The Council of the City of New York 
Council Member Costa Constantinides, District 22

June 26, 2019
Contact: Terence Cullen

Astoria, NY — New York City Council Member Costa Constantinides, Chair of the Committee on Environmental Protection, today called on NBC News to dedicate a portion of the 2020 Democratic Primary debates in Miami this week to fighting climate change at the national level. 

“You shouldn’t be on the stage unless you support a Green New Deal,” said Council Member Costa Constantinides, who helped pass New York City’s landmark Climate Mobilization Act this spring. “Americans deserve to hear what these candidates will do to make this necessary commitment a reality, because we have just a decade left before climate change creates serious upheaval. I call on NBC News to lead the way by dedicating significant time over the next two nights to this phenomenon.” 

Climate change’s violent weather are projected to cause massive disruptions throughout the country without meaningful action to reduce carbon emissions nationally. The Pentagon deemed these effects a national security threat in the decades to come without real action. Yet the Trump administration has bizarrely dismissed these warnings to roll back regulations on coal-burning power plants in spite of industry efforts to promote renewable energy. 

The Democratic National Committee recently rejected Washington Gov. Jay Inslee’s request for a special debate focused solely on this life-threatening phenomenon. That only underscored the need for at least three questions at the debate asking candidates how they’ll promote renewable energy, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and foster a green economy. 

NBC News, MSNBC, and Telemundo will host the first debate over two nights between 20 candidates vying for the Democratic nomination in 2020. Democratic voters in Iowa, Nevada, and New Hampshire recently polled by Monmouth University listed climate change as their second largest concern behind healthcare coverage. 

Council Member Costa Constantinides represents the New York City Council’s 22nd District, which includes his native Astoria along with parts of Woodside, East Elmhurst, and Jackson Heights. He serves as the chair of the City Council’s Environmental Protection Committee and sits on three additional committees: Sanitation, Resiliency, and Technology. For more information, visit