OPINION: Making the Grade on the Environment

By Martin O'Malley, Governor

We received some great news about our efforts, working together in the State of Maryland, to improve the health of our environment and the Chesapeake Bay. The Maryland League of Conservation Voters released their comprehensive mid-term report card that placed Maryland “as a national leader in environmental policy.” Their report awarded Maryland an overall grade of A-, the highest grade ever given by the organization, as a result of the strong environmental ethic instilled in all of our state agencies and communities.

It's vitally important that we make decisions that are derived from our highest ideals for the future we all prefer – not only for ourselves, but for our children. So coming together as One Maryland, we have been working tirelessly to build a more sustainable energy future and preserve and protect Maryland's natural beauty.

That spirit of determination and innovation led the National Resource Defense Council to name Maryland as one of the Top 10 states making significant progress towards breaking an unsustainable addiction to oil that is threatening our economy and our security. The report ranked Maryland second overall among states that are making eco-friendly public transportation a high priority.

We are continuing to find new and innovative ways to continue to live up to the reputation given to us over a year ago by the Washington Post when they declared that an “eco-friendly era” had arrived in Maryland. Whether by promoting farmers and locally-grown food through the Buy-Local Challenge, replacing our transportation fleet with efficient hybrid buses, or dedicating the necessary resources to the Chesapeake Bay clean-up effort, Maryland is doing its part to confront our modern energy crisis, and as a result, has been recognized as a national leader.

It's been a week of exciting news about Maryland's future, but we know that there is still much more to be done. As One Maryland, we will continue making steady progress by coming together and rising to our generation's greatest challenges to realize that brighter future for our children and theirs.

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