Press Statement
From the Office of State Senator Rodney Ellis

For Immediate Release
July 29, 2008
Contact: Tina Tran, 713-236-0306

Senator Ellis joins Leaders for Kick-Off of Commission to Engage African Americans on Climate Change

(Washington, DC-July 29, 2008) -- Senator Ellis joined experts on energy and the environment today to announce the creation of the Commission to Engage African Americans on Climate Change (CEAC). The Texas State Senator will co-chair the Commission, alongside Ralph B. Everett, president of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies.

"This Commission will ensure that African-Americans are fully engaged in the process to create effective climate change policies that promote affordable solutions and strengthen our economy. I'm very excited to co-chair this very important effort," stated Senator Ellis.

The Commission will work with African-Americans and others to understand the impacts that climate change will have on their communities, and work to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions and ensure that energy policies are fair to all Americans. At a press conference today, the Commission released key findings based on the views of African Americans regarding climate and energy issues.

In a statement of support, Senator Barack Obama said, " Global climate change is one of the greatest challenges facing our generation. Last September, as part of the Annual Legislative Conference of the Congressional Black Caucus, I convened a distinguished panel of experts to discuss the implications of global warming, particularly for African-American communities. Today's announcement of the establishment of the Commission to Engage African Americans on Climate Change is a bold step forward in enlisting these communities to help develop solutions to this problem. I commend Texas State Senator Rodney Ellis, Ralph Everett, the President and CEO of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, and the other commissioners for their vision and leadership."

Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid, stated in a letter of support that, "Too often, major policy issues are debated form a wide perspective without proper consideration given to disparate communities. The Commission's work is critically important because every citizen of our nation and planet is a stakeholder in the issue of global warming."