Mike's Agenda

Protecting Our Planet

Our district is home to more than 50 miles of beautiful California coastline and other cherished lands and waters like San Onofre State Beach and the San Elijo Lagoon. Unfortunately, the climate crisis threatens our natural treasures, with extreme heat waves, longer droughts, year-round wildfires, and rising sea levels and storm surges driving unprecedented coastal erosion.

As a longtime advocate for climate action and member of the House Natural Resources Committee, Mike led aggressive legislation to protect our environment and grow our economy at the same time.

Mike helped pass the Inflation Reduction Act, which makes the single largest investment in climate action in history, with $370 billion in investments to reduce carbon emissions 40 percent below 2005 levels by 2030. The bill will also lower energy costs for consumers with $9 billion in consumer home energy rebate programs, energy efficiency tax credits, clean vehicle tax credits for middle- and low-income families, and more.

Mike worked across the aisle to pass the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and fought for provisions to expand electric vehicle charging infrastructure, invest in the supply chain for batteries, provide $1.5 billion for clean hydrogen manufacturing, invest $550 million in the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program, and much more.

To reduce greenhouse gas emissions and manufacture the cars of the future here in America, Mike introduced legislation to transition America to zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs), expand charging infrastructure, and convert Park Service and Forest Service fleets to ZEVs. He supported bills to ban new offshore drilling along our Southern California coast and protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Following the October 2021 oil spill off the coast of Orange County, Mike led the effort to advance legislation ending new drilling and strengthening oversight of offshore drilling companies.

Our district is on the frontline of the climate crisis, which is why Mike secured critical resources to protect our environment, including $30 million to put approximately 1,000,000 cubic yards of sand on the beach in Encinitas and Solana Beach, $5 million for flood protection in Oceanside, $9 million to restore beaches in San Clemente, and more. Mike has also secured more than $50 million for local water recycling and desalination so that our community has reliable drinking water for generations to come.

Mike is also fighting to protect the unique lagoon landscapes and ecosystems in our district. He introduced the bipartisan Resilient Coasts and Estuaries Act to fund the protection of estuary habitats nationwide, including San Mateo Creek, San Luis Rey River, and San Elijo Lagoon.

As Co-Chair of the House Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition Clean Energy Deployment Task Force, Mike and Rep. Sean Casten (D-IL) introduced the Clean Electricity and Transmission Acceleration (CETA) Act, legislation that comprehensively addresses the primary permitting and transmission issues that are holding back the American clean energy transition. In addition to tackling the climate crisis by unlocking the full potential of renewable energy, CETA will reduce energy costs by enabling the cleanest, least-expensive forms of energy – renewables – to connect to the grid.

Mike introduced the American Coasts and Oceans Protection Act to prohibit any new leasing for the exploration, development, or production of oil or natural gas along the Southern California coast, from San Diego to the northern border of San Luis Obispo County. The bill passed the House as part of a legislative package, but was ultimately removed by the Senate. Mike won’t stop until there is a federal offshore drilling ban off the Southern California coast.

As part of the 2020 United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, Mike’s advocacy helped secure $300 million to clean up toxic pollution and raw sewage from the Tijuana River. Read more from the Los Angeles Times about Mike’s role in helping to deliver these funds.

With two young children at home, Mike will always work to protect our planet for future generations.