The following is testimony in support of the Omaha City Council accepting funds from the EPA to support the development and implementation of a Climate Action Plan for the City of Omaha. This testimony was prepared and delivered on Aug. 29 by One Omaha’s Engagement Manager, Alex O’Hanlon.
I am here today on behalf of One Omaha and in favor of accepting the EPA funds for the upcoming Climate Action Plan. One Omaha empowers people where they live through education, training, and engagement to develop thriving neighborhoods.
The most important tenet of a thriving neighborhood is that it is a healthy neighborhood. The upcoming Climate Action Plan is an opportunity to learn from residents about their experiences living in neighborhoods that are affected by environmental injustices amid a worsening climate crisis. This information should inform a plan that addresses and remediates those injustices while at the same time creating a blueprint for moving forward with the development of our city in a way that supports residents and the ecosystems we live in.
It is imperative that we create a comprehensive climate action plan to improve the quality of life in our community, address decades of environmental racism, and determine how to best foster a sustainable future that includes clean air, clean water, and a healthful environment for all. This plan must be founded on the feedback of the residents most impacted by climate change and be ready for expeditious implementation. Accepting these funds is the first step in a long and overdue process. I urge you all to vote to accept these funds so that we can move forward with this important plan in the most fiscally responsible manner.