White House Climate Advisor talks infrastructure and climate change impacts in Hampton Roads

gina mccarthy.jpg
Posted at 5:08 PM, Aug 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-03 17:16:20-04

NORFOLK, Va. -- Infrastructure is on a positive track in Hampton Roads, and White House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy is taking notice.

"This is all about being happy that we're moving forward with investments on (Capitol) Hill like the bipartisan infrastructure plan and the reconciliation plan,” McCarthy said. “But more importantly what it means to communities like this."

She joined elected officials such as Congresswoman Elaine Luria and Congressman Bobby Scott at the Norfolk International Terminals to highlight key infrastructure projects.

All of this comes on the heels of a $1 trillion bi-partisan infrastructure bill unveiled by the Senate. That bill is expected to be voted on this week.

They also highlighted threats that could hinder any progress such as climate change.

"Infrastructure is best when it's not flooded,” McCarthy said.

"They can see firsthand the effects of climate change of sea-level rise of current flooding in our region and how those investments will benefit Hampton Roads," Democratic Congresswoman Elaine Luria said.

Projections were shown of areas that could be flooded at the hands of climate change, including the NIT.

"I think that they're actually making climate change one of the fundamental considerations in how they grow back,” McCarthy said, “how they think about ensuring they're resilient."

The other issue, one not created by climate change, is the jobs and people to fill those positions.

"We do not have enough highly-skilled workers at this point,” Democratic Congressman Bobby Scott said. “We have to make sure they're trained to our benefit, not only to the climate but to also benefit a lot of people who get much better jobs than they have now."

“As long as we get these investments on the table, this community and others will have an ability to grow,” McCarthy said.