Nearly 300 climate justice groups ask Congress to reject Manchin proposals and embrace renewable transition

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On May 9, the Climate Justice Alliance, the Center for Biodiversity, and the Indigenous Environment Network, along with more than 290 other climate justice organizations, urgent letter We call on President Biden and Congressional Democratic leaders to take action to accelerate renewable energy, address the grid challenge, and advance environmental justice.The letter also contains Summary of Support Policy Examples of specific actions Congress can take.

Group asks Congress to veto Proposed by Republicans and Senator Joe Manchin Renewable energy yields only marginal gains, while fossil fuels yield enormous gains. Instead, the letter calls on Congress to increase community engagement and uphold environmental justice by taking two actions.

“Rather than sticking to a few petty proposals, Congress should take meaningful action to address transmission challenges and advance a renewable energy future,” said Brett Hartle, director of government affairs at the Center for Biodiversity. should be taken,” he said. “We don’t have to buy into Senator Manchin’s machinations to beef up the fossil fuel industry, or sit back and watch the Republican horror show efforts to dismantle all environmental protections. Congress can do better. Must.”

The letter also identifies five key areas for Congress’ action.

  • Maximize the use of distributed energy resources, such as installing distributed solar on the rooftops of residential, commercial, public buildings, parking lots and other developments close to where energy is consumed. This should go hand in hand with the deployment of battery storage and microgrids to provide more reliable, resilient and affordable energy that benefits communities.
  • Powering federal agencies to crack down on energy-wasting activities by emerging industries such as cryptocurrencies, while minimizing energy use by doubling down on energy efficiency efforts such as heat pump deployments, weather protection and demand response technologies. give.
  • Reform and reorganize the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the Department of Energy to prioritize distributed energy and responsibly installed transmission, efficiently coordinate multi-level licensing, and enable commercial operators to adopt renewable energy. provide a master planning authority to prevent interference with
  • Requires all federal agencies to advance innovative solutions to replace fossil fuels with renewable energy. For example, it would require the Federal Emergency Management Agency to prioritize rebuilding communities affected by natural disasters with renewable energy systems over fossil fuel systems.
  • Directs all federal agencies to deprioritize fossil fuel project reviews and approvals until all currently pending renewable energy and related transmission projects are completed before the agency does; provide strong funding so that they have a meaningful opportunity to be heard;

The group’s letter also warns against expensive and unproven technologies that claim to cut emissions. Congress and the Biden administration are pushing for hydrogen power generation and carbon capture, even as these technologies continue to expand the use of fossil fuels and expose the environmental justice community to potentially decades of additional pollution and other consequences. continues to advance these technologies, including a vast network of pipelines for load.

“For too long, our elected leaders have said that the fossil fuel industry and investor-owned utilities control our power grid, pollute our neighborhoods, It has allowed the creation of victim zones from browns, indigenous peoples, and low-income communities.Congress and the Biden administration have addressed years of environmental injustice by rejecting fossil fuel projects, including hydrogen and carbon capture and storage. We have an opportunity to put it right,” said Huang Jongchung, climate justice director and co-chair on climate change issues at the Michigan Environmental Justice Coalition. Policy Working Group of the Justice Alliance. “Our government will strengthen environmental regulations, properly fund government agencies, address the most affected people first, minimize mining, and maximize benefits for all. We must plan our energy system, and regardless of race or zip code, we all deserve a fair, community-centered, renewable energy future.”

News from the Center for Biodiversity

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