We are on fire…Tell your representative to push for these 3 climate priorities in the recovery package.

(Image from @US_Stormwatch, Aug. 4, Dixie Fire)

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (#IPCC) just announced that #ClimateChange is caused by humans, and is widespread, rapid, & intensifying in every region & across the whole climate system.
(press release: https://bit.ly/WGICC2021PR, #ClimateReport: https://bit.ly/WGICC2021).

While we await for the usual “denier” arguments from the Koch-funded fossil-fuel propaganda machine – including the Heritage Foundation and the Heartland Institute, we can watch people being evacuated by ferry from Greece, the Dixie Fire flames rise over 100′ high and climate-change flooding kill people in Europe. The whole world has been invited to this party and our host has something to say.

It’s America’s turn to make a coherent response. Since passing the American Rescue Plan, Congress has been working on a recovery package, which includes three main parts. The first is the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework (BIF)- the roads-and bridges-deal currently being negotiated with Republicans, which needs 60 votes to clear the filibuster. The next two parts are the Democrat’s budget resolution and reconciliation process, which we hope will pick up all the climate change issues that were left off or underfunded in the BIF. Its passage is subject to the judgement of the Senate parliamentarian, and random whims of “Democratic” legislators like Manchin and Sinema.

Our job? Making sure our own legislators know our priorities, that we will back them while they fight for them and that we’re watching the outcome.

Action: Call your legislators to demand these three climate priority bills get into the recovery package.

Minimal script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Rep. [___] to address the climate crisis in the recovery package, including cosponsoring the following bills:

  • H.R.516 – The Environmental Justice Mapping and Data Collection Act
    • (Rep-check here. Brownley and Carbajal haven’t cosponsored yet.)
  • H.R.2670 – The Civilian Climate Corps for Jobs and Justice Act
    • (Rep-check here. Brownley and Carbajal haven’t cosponsored yet.)
    • (NOTE: This is a different bill than similarly named H.R.1162 – See “Notes” below!)
  • H.R.3959 – The American Renewable Energy Act
    • (Rep-check here. Brownley and Carbajal haven’t cosponsored yet.)

Contact:

  • Rep. Julia Brownley (CA-26): email, DC (202) 225-5811, Oxnard (805) 379-1779, T.O. (805) 379-1779
  • or Rep. Salud Carbajal (CA-24): email. DC (202) 225-3601, SB (805) 730-1710 SLO (805) 546-8348
  • Who is my representative?: https://whoismyrepresentative.com

Action: Remind your senators – No recess until they pass S.1 – For the People Act.

Title from theHill.com article: “This week: Senate races toward summer break.” Remind them the infrastructure plan is a start, but we need them to stay until they finish foundational work on voting rights.

POST: No recess until the Senate passes S.1 – For the People Act and stops partisan gerrymandering.

Notes

H.R.516 – The Environmental Justice Mapping and Data Collection Act

The Environmental Justice Mapping and Data Collection Act establishes the framework needed to direct at least 40% of federal investments to frontline communities.

As our nation rebuilds from this deadly pandemic, we must continue prioritize working to ensure every American has the right to breathe safe air, drink clean water and live on uncontaminated land regardless of their zip code, the size of their wallet or the color of their skin.” – Sen. Duckworth

  • Introduction of bill by Sens. Markey and Duckworth and Rep. Cori Bush here.
  • A copy of the legislation can be found HERE
  • A one-pager of the bill can be found HERE.

H.R.2670 – The Civilian Climate Corps for Jobs and Justice Act

The Civilian Climate Corps for Jobs and Justice Act creates 1.5 million jobs, guaranteeing a $15 minimum wage, healthcare coverage, and requires at least 50% of hires to be from frontline communities. Indivisible, the Sierra Club, the Sunrise Movement, Food & Water Watch and more are big fans of this bill. Great listing of examples of projects that would be eligible for funding here.

  • Introduction of bill by Sens. Markey and Ocasio-Cortez here.
  • A copy of the legislation can be found HERE
  • A one-pager of the bill can be found HERE.

Wait! Didn’t we just read about a CCC reboot in your column? Yes. To confuse us all, this bill is almost a title-twin to H.R.1162 – “21st Century Conservation Corps Act.” However, H.R. 2670, largely a brainchild of the Sunrise Movement, focuses on the potential workforce, while the latter, H.R.1162, snuck in a whole section of giveaways, both in trees and taxpayer money, to the logging industry. (If you haven’t called about this climate-change disaster and waste of our money yet, here’s the action for that.)

President Biden has put out his vision for recovery—the American Jobs and Families Plan— and it’s a good first step, but fails to address the climate crisis we are facing.

H.R.3959 – The American Renewable Energy Act

Biden’s original utilities goals have taken a beating in the bipartisan infrastructure plan. Along with cutting the budget in half for water infrastructure (which includes the president’s plan to replace all of the nation’s lead pipes) to $55 billion, no money was put into clean energy tax credits, a $363 billion cut.

The American Renewable Energy Act establishes an ambitious renewable energy standard to drastically reduce emissions, decrease pollution, and promote community resiliency and energy democracy. It’s supported by Indivisible and renewable energy groups representing wind, solar and hydropower associations, and environmental groups such as the Natural Resources Defense Council, Union of Concerned Scientists, and the League of Conservation Voters and the Sunshine Movement. Supporters here.

Analysis of the American Renewable Energy and Efficiency Act and similar previously- introduced legislation found that, if enacted, the bill would:

  • Create more than 400,000 jobs
  • Lead to energy efficiency improvements that will save the average Americanhousehold $39 annually. Cumulative consumer savings through 2030 would benearly $90 billion
  • Spur more than $200 billion in new capital investments in renewable energytechnology, leading to nearly a quadrupling of renewable electricity production by2025
  • Reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 480 million metric tons annually by 2025,the equivalent output of 120 coal-fired power plants

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