ACT BY THURSDAY, APRIL 1

ISSUE

House Bill 2189 (and its Senate companion bill SB 13) would require the State of Texas and its entities (including state pension funds and the state’s huge K-12 school endowment) to cut ties with companies that refuse to invest in fossil fuels.

Scientific data shows that we must decrease reliance on fossil fuels to avoid climate catastrophe. It is clear that the future lies in renewable energy, and the movement to divest from fossil fuels has gained traction in recent years. Divestment allows banks, investment funds, and investors to prioritize the climate crisis when doing business. Texas has both realized and acted upon this when attracting forward-thinking businesses like Tesla.

HB 2189 would force Texas to invest against its own interests and future economic strength. It seeks to rein in the free market, inhibit business innovation, and possibly also infringe on free speech. It could jeopardize Texas’ reputation as a business-friendly state.

HB 2189 creates an intricate system of lists, reports, and oversight of companies that prefer not to transact with fossil fuel companies for whatever reason. Although leaving convenient loopholes and treating state entities inconsistently, this bill actually treats business interactions with certain business sectors in the state as it does enemies of the US!

Luke Metzger, the executive director of Environment Texas, says of SB 13, the companion bill of HB 2189, “Lt. Gov. Patrick and his allies will be shooting themselves in their own feet in order to ‘own the libs.’ The state’s political leadership are trying to have their cake and eat it, too. They’re recruiting Fortune 500 companies to move here with promises that Texas can help them achieve carbon neutrality and then at the same time, undermining those very efforts in order to prop up the anachronistic, dangerous oil industry. They’re pledging action to prevent future blackouts and then doubling down on the fossil fuels that were responsible.”

CALL OR WRITE

Every Texan should call or write members of the House State Affairs Committee (contact info below), and submit a comment online.

Submit a public comment here. Put in your contact information, then select “HB 2189 by King, Phil” and write your comments.

When you call or write, you can say…

My name is_______. I am a Texan living in______, and my zip code is __. I ask that you vote NO on HB 2189. This bill would require the State of Texas to cut ties with companies that refuse to invest in fossil fuels. Texas has a reputation as a business-friendly state and this bill would undercut that hard-earned reputation. HB 2189 would also force Texas to move against its own interests and future economic strength. It would distort the free market by artificially propping up the fossil fuel industry, inhibit innovation, and possibly also infringe on free speech. Please VOTE NO on HB 2189!

House State Affairs Committee

  • Chair: Chris Paddie, 512-463-0556, chris.paddie@house.texas.gov
  • Vice Chair: Ana Hernandez, 512-463-0614, ana.hernandez@house.texas.gov
  • Member: Joe Deshotel, 512-463-0662, joe.deshotel@house.texas.gov
  • Member: Sam Harless, 512-463-0496, sam.harless@house.texas.gov
  • Member: Donna Howard, 512-463-0631, donna.howard@house.texas.gov
  • Member: Todd Hunter, 512-463-0672, todd.hunter@house.texas.gov
  • Member: Phil King, 512-463-0738, phil.king@house.texas.gov
  • Member: Eddie Lucio III, 512-463-0606, eddie.lucio_III@house.texas.gov
  • Member: Will Metcalf, 512-463-0726, will.metcalf@house.texas.gov
  • Member: Richard Raymond, 512-463-0558, richard.raymond@house.texas.gov
  • Member: Matt Shaheen, 512-463-0594, matt.shaheen@house.texas.gov
  • Member: Shelby Slawson, 512-463-0628, shelby.slawson@house.texas.gov
  • Member: John Smithee, 512-463-0702, john.smithee@house.texas.gov

FOR MORE

You can read the text of the bill here.

And here is some background reading on SB 13, the companion bill of HB 2189: