Learn how eco-friendly the congressional candidates in Arizona are before you vote this November. To learn more about Sustainable Politician Project, read our full intro here. To access our article on Arizona’s primary election, click here.
Kyrsten Sinema (D) – Rank: Weak
The good: Kyrsten doesn’t support the Keystone XL pipeline, supports government funding for the development of renewable energy and the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions, and voted against exempting some power plants who convert coal refuse into energy from certain EPA standards. The Bad: Kyrsten voted not to have a carbon tax, and voted to resume building the nuclear waste facility at Yucca Mountain (source).
Martha McSally (R) – Rank: Bad
The Good: Supports funding for renewable energy. The Bad: Supports Keystone XL pipeline, opposes a carbon tax and regulating greenhouse gas emissions, voted to resume building the nuclear waste facility at Yucca Mountain, and voted to exempt certain power plants from EPA standards (source).
Angela Green (Green) – Rank: Weak
Her campaign site does not talk very thoroughly about the issues she supports, but Angela does mention that protecting the environment is an important issue to tackle.
U.S. House of Representatives
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Tom O’Halleran – Rank: Good
- A bill he wrote passed in the house to clean up abandoned Uranium mines in tribal and rural areas across the Southwest.
Tom O’Halleran has a history of voting to help the environment with his bill to clean up the Uranium mines and his vote to not exempt power plants that convert coal refuse into energy from EPA regulations. He also voted to make sure the Federal Columbia River Power System must be managed in a way “that is consistent with the Endangered Species Act.” But while he has voted to improve the environment, his track record isn’t always consistent. He also voted yes to not have a carbon tax because it would be “bad for American families.”
Wendy Rogers (R) – Rank: Bad
Wendy approves of the Keystone XL pipeline, drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, offshore drilling, and more oil refineries. Wendy opposes regulating the energy sector. She does, however, claim to support funding renewable energy, but only has an 11% LCV lifetime score. (Source 1 | Source 2).
Ann Kirkpatrick (D) – Rank: Strong
Ann has worked to protect Arizona’s natural resources and lands by supporting the Four Forest Restoration Initiative. She wants to work on reducing our country’s carbon emissions by pushing for alternative renewable energy sources. Lastly, Ann strongly supports a local approach to your state’s environmental issues. This can help with addressing local environmental issues in ways that the federal government may not have the individual understanding of each communities’ needs.
Lea Marquez Peterson (R) – Rank: Unknown
Lea’s campaign site discusses several key issues, but sustainability and environmentalism are not one of them.
- Does not support the Keystone XL pipeline
- Supports government funding for the development of renewable energy and the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions.
Not only is Raul Grijalva the top Democrat on the House Natural Resource committee, but he also has a long record of fighting for a better environment. He believes that the environment and the economy do not have to be enemies, and we can work to have a better environment and a thriving economy.
He states on his website, “Hiking, hunting, fishing, cycling, and camping are the foundation of businesses across the West and the entire nation. Outdoor recreation contributes about $730 billion to the economy each year. The great outdoors is one of America’s most important treasures, both environmentally and economically. Spoiling it is not an option.” Raul Grijalva also believes in stronger protections for natural landmarks and places, especially from places that the mining industry wishes to destroy. He introduced the Save Oak Flat Act to block the Resolution Copper Mine from taking over Native American land.
He is also fighting for the Grand Canyon. He wishes to create the Greater Grand Canyon Heritage National Monument which would protect more than 1 million acres of land north and south of the Grand Canyon. The land is currently being threatened by those looking to mine Uranium. Grijalva has advocated for full funding of the National Park Service for most of his career in Congress and has won awards because of that.
Raul also wants to protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, save wilderness areas and endangered species from pollution as well as increase funding for wildfire suppression. He also wants to update the General Mining Law of 1872 so that taxpayers are compensated for public land and that miners do not undermine the environment and the protections put on it.
Nicolas Pierson (R) – Rank: Unknown
Nicolas’ campaign site discusses several key issues, but sustainability and environmentalism are not one of them.
Our pick: David Brill – Rank: Strong
- Head of Primary Care, Northern Arizona Veterans Administration
David Brill believes that renewable energy is where the future lies and that Arizona has “the highest quality solar potential of any state.” He thinks that we must provide more incentive for business to help make the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy easier and give people more options for how to participate in clean energy.
David Brill also believes that we must restore and support the teaching of science in schools and properly fund the EPA and hire actual scientists to run it and publish their research findings.
To help fight climate change, Brill proposes more funding to fight fires, floods, and droughts, to fully embrace science and what it tells us we need to do to help prevent the dire effects of climate change and to ultimately reduce industrial carbon pollution.
Paul Gosar (R) – Incumbent – Rank: Weak
Supports funding renewable energy, but opposes regulating greenhouse gases and carbon taxes. Paul also supported the Keystone XL pipeline (source).
Haryaksha Gregor Knauer (Green Party) – Rank: Weak
Haryaksha’s website does state his concerns with the environment but does not discuss many plans to remedy these concerns other than addressing airplane travel.
Joan Greene (D) – Rank: Good
Joan is looking to protect the planet. According to her website, she wants to help work towards new technologies, green jobs, better health, better food, eco-friendly innovation, and clean water and air. These all sound like great things, but the plans to achieve this are not very well defined.
Andy opposes regulation of greenhouse gas submissions and a carbon tax. Andy also voted to resume building the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste facility. Not that we need to say more, his LCV lifetime scorecard is only 6% (source).
Anita Malik (D) – Rank: Good
Anita wants to increase investments in renewable energy and strongly opposes fracking. Anita promises to defend marginalized communities who often disproportionately affected by the effects of climate change.
David has an all of the above energy approach with fossil fuels and renewables, supports Keystone XL pipeline and opposes the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions (source). His LCV scorecard of 5% points out that these all stand true (source).
Ruben supports government funding for developing renewable energy and regulating greenhouse gas emissions. He opposed the Keystone XL pipeline, building the nuclear waste facility at Yucca Mountain. However, he did not support a carbon tax (source).
Gary Swing (Green Party) – Rank: Unknown
We could not find information regarding Gary’s sustainable platform.
Hiral Tipimeni (D) – Rank: Strong
Hiral wants to take advantage of Arizona’s climate when it comes to sustainability by pushing for more utilization of solar energy and other renewable sources. She also wants to use this increase in renewable energy as a way to decrease carbon emissions and work toward a cleaner environment. Additionally, Hiral supports the Paris Climate Agreement and would like to see our country joining the world’s fight against climate change.
Debbie Lesko (R) – Incumbent – Rank: Bad
Debbie voted against a carbon tax and voted in support of a nuclear waste facility on Yucca Mountain. In a political courage test, she has indicated her opposition to funding renewable energy developments (source).
Our primary pick: Greg Stanton – Rank: Strong
- Former mayor of Phoenix
Greg Stanton firmly believes that the US needs to re-agree to the Paris Agreement and not just for the climate change policies it provides, but because it’s bad policy to pull out of a commitment the US originally agree to. He believes that the US needs to do its part to fighting climate change and to make sure the Earth’s temperature levels don’t keep increasing and cause more damage to people across the globe.
Greg Stanton also believes that cities need to be better supported to deal with climate change. In particular, he’s helped Phoenix reduce its own carbon emissions by 15%. This is a huge deal because it illustrates his success in implementing necessary measures within his ability already. He also has worked and says he will continue to work to support and improve relations with Mexico (source).
Steve Ferrara (R) – Rank: Unknown
Steve’s campaign site lists many key issues on his platform, but sustainability and environmentalism were not listed.