Faced with different temperatures, more storms, and more sporadic precipitation, Arkansas must invest in infrastructure that is environmentally sound and keeps in mind all communities within the state. There are challenges to livelihoods—particularly in agriculture— in recreation (for instance, the decreasing population of ducks), and communities (who may need access to drinking water). And, the communities who have been most disenfranchised (particularly communities of color) are the most at risk from environmental threats, contaminated water, . While this is no accident, Chris Jones believes that we can uphold environmental justice with Arkansan ingenuity, grit, and by bringing those most at risk into the conversation.
The Natural State has the perfect convergence of incredible natural resources and statewide experts on how to improve infrastructure and build the systems that Arkansas needs to sustain our population and economy. First, Arkansas is a leader in advanced energy and must continue to invest in these industries. Second, Arkansas is the recipient of over a billion dollars in from the federal infrastructure bill: resources that must be used to build infrastructure that leaves no community behind.
Chris Jones will also pursue state policies and laws that work to address these disparities and build clean infrastructure in communities that have long been forgotten. These efforts will aim to bridge the gaps between communities—Black and White, urban and rural— and maintain clean air and water, agriculture, and recreation in the natural state for generations to come.
To support environmental justice, Chris Jones will:
- Raise awareness and support research into the effects of climate change in Arkansas.
- Direct funding from the federal infrastructure bill to build infrastructure in communities most in need.
- Develop a plan for environmental sustainability that protects Arkansas’s resources and leaves no community behind.