Published: March 5 2014 | 4:44 pm - Updated: 1 April 2014 | 9:13 am in

 United States Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., will visit Iowa this month in hopes of securing climate change as an important subject in the 2016 presidential race. Whitehouse will make a three-day stop to Des Moines March 17 with stops in Shenendoah and Omaha, Neb.

Whitehouse, who chairs the Environment and Public Works Committe's Clean Air and Nucelar Safety Subcommittee, was invited by state Sen. Rob Hogg, D- Cedar Rapids, who has also been an ardent advocate on the urgency of climate change.

Whitehouse said he isn't planning to run for president but he hopes bringing the issue to Iowa, famous for it's first-in-the-nation caucuses, will slate climate change as an important topic among presidential candidates.

"Climate change threatens Rhode Island coasts and Iowa farmlands alike, and I look forward to this opportunity to talk to rural Americans about the threats they face," Whitehouse said in a statement announcing his visit. "I also realize that in order to advance serious climate chance legislation in Congress, we need to make climate change a major topic in the 2016 presidential race."

Whitehouse is expected to visit the Iowa Statehouse March 18 at 9:15 a.m., attend a business panel on climate change and clean energy at the University of Iowa Pappajohn Center in downtown Des Moines at 3 p.m. and give a public presentation to the Izaak Walton League at 7:15 p.m.. Although more details will be released the senator's trip will include a visit to a BioProcess Algae location in Shenandoah.

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