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SC State to host 2020 presidential hopefuls for environmental forum

Democratic 2020 hopefuls will descend on South Carolina next month to tout their views on climate change and participate in an environmental justice forum.

The National Black Caucus of State Legislators announced Tuesday that the forum, focused on connecting voters from marginalized communities to presidential hopefuls, will take place Nov. 8 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at South Carolina State University.

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, former U.S. Rep. John Delaney and businessman Tom Steyer will participate, and others may commit to attending at a later date, according to the statement from the National Black Caucus of State Legislators.

“Candidates who want to earn the votes of communities impacted by environmental justice should step up, hear our concerns and explain their plans for a cleaner, healthier future for all,” caucus president and S.C. legislator Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter said. “This forum provides a rare opportunity for the candidates to show us where they stand on clean water, clean air and so many of the important issues that people living on the front lines of environmental degradation face.”

Candidates will individually appear on stage at the historic Martin Luther King Jr. Auditorium to answer questions about different environmental issues, including topics like air pollution, tainted water and environmental degradation. Questions can be submitted online ahead of the forum.

Other forum sponsors include the Pee Dee Indian Tribe of South Carolina, South Carolina Environmental Justice Network, WE ACT for Environmental Justice, the NAACP, the National Wildlife Federation, the National Children’s Campaign, the South Carolina Wildlife Federation, the Conservation Voters of South Carolina and South Carolina State University.

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Emily Bohatch helps cover South Carolina’s government for The State. She also updates The State’s databases. Her accomplishments include winning a Green Eyeshade award in Disaster Reporting in 2018 for her teamwork reporting on Hurricane Irma. She has a degree in Journalism with a minor in Spanish from Ohio University’s E. W. Scripps School of Journalism.