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Schumer calls for action on climate after devastating Ida flooding

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer

US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has said that extreme flooding in the New York area, which has killed nearly two dozen people in New York and New Jersey so far, from Hurricane Ida shows that “global warming is upon us.”  

"Woe is us if we don't recognize these changes are due to climate change. Woe is us if we don't do something about it quickly,” Schumer said on Thursday at a press conference with New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D).

The New York senator said the climate and resilience provisions in the infrastructure packages currently before Congress could “stop the global warming or at least reduce its awful effects on this country.”

“When you get two record rainfalls in a week, it’s not just coincidence,” he said. “Global warming is upon us and it’s going to get worse and worse and worse unless we do something about it, and that’s why it’s so important to pass… the infrastructure bill and the budget reconciliation bill.”

The bipartisan infrastructure bill, which is a $1 trillion package, could provide America’s biggest investment in decades in roads, bridges, airports and waterways.

The bill includes funds for renewable energy and climate resilience, but omits some major climate agenda items such as a clean energy standard.

Schumer vowed to secure as much federal disaster aid as necessary in response to the extreme weather.

“We will fight and make New York declared a disaster area … and that will mean money” for homeowners, business owners and city and local governments, he added, promising to ensure “no stone is left unturned.”

Hurricane Ida has killed at least 22 people in New York and New Jersey, according to officials. Hochul and New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) both declared states of emergency Wednesday, which also saw the first-ever flash flood emergency issued for New York City.

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