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Good Climate News

Good Climate News this Week: EPA’s Plan to Eliminate Lead Pipes, Michigan’s 100% Clean Energy Commitment, a Win at COP28, and More!

Dec 4, 2023

Every Monday, we round up five of the best good climate news stories we’re celebrating. This week, we’re covering the EPA’s plan to eliminate lead pipes, the approval of two offshore wind projects, Michigan’s 100% clean energy commitment, the “Climate Impact and Response Fund,” and investments in the U.K.’s green transition.

1. EPA proposes eliminating all of America’s lead pipes

Closeup of a faucet with water pouring.
Credit: Rawpixel

The EPA has proposed a historic rule on lead pipes that would require the removal of nearly all lead water pipes across the country over the next 10 years. This rule is the strongest lead rule the country has ever seen, according to Radhika Fox, the EPA’s assistant administrator for water, and would institute the strictest limits for lead in drinking water since the introduction of federal lead standards in 1991.

Drinking water contaminated with lead can cause irreversible damage to the brain and nervous system, especially in children and infants. Eliminating lead water pipes would help prevent lead poisoning from affecting communities nationwide and avert future public health disasters like the ongoing crisis in Flint, Michigan.

Source: New York Times

2. Biden administration green-lights sixth offshore wind project

Sunset over an ocean horizon with wind turbines.
Credit: 掬茶

The Biden-Harris administration has approved the construction of two offshore wind projects, Empire Wind 1 and Empire Wind 2, off the coast of New York and New Jersey. This is the administration’s sixth commercial-scale offshore wind project approval.

The projects will feature up to 147 wind turbines and will provide an estimated 700,000 homes with clean energy, as well as support 830 jobs each year during construction and 300 jobs annually once operational.

Source: DOI

3. Michigan governor signs 100% clean energy into law

Governor Whitmer shaking hands with a person.
Credit: Julia Pickett

Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed the Michigan Clean Energy Future and Clean Energy and Jobs Act into law on Tuesday. The bills will improve Michigan’s clean energy requirements and mandate that state utilities shift to 100% clean energy sources by 2040.

In addition to being a critical step toward tackling the climate crisis, Michigan’s clean energy package will create good paying clean energy jobs, lower costs, and work to invest in communities, while making Michigan a national leader in energy efficiency and clean energy.

Source: NBC

4. COP28 nations establish “Climate Impact and Response Fund” 

View of damage caused on by Hurricane Irma in Road Town, the capital of the British Virgin Islands.
Credit: DFID

Building on the COP27 commitment of establishing a loss-and-damages fund for nations on the frontlines of climate change, COP28 kicked off with an agreement to establish a fund within the World Bank aimed at assisting nations who are impacted by the consequences of climate change despite not contributing heavily to its causes.

The fund will take voluntary contributions from nations and direct them to help frontline nations withstand the impacts of climate change.

Source: Axios

5. U.K. announces €4.5 billion for green transition

Row of solar panels in the United Kingdom.
Credit: David Blaikie

The Treasury of the U.K. has announced it will provide €4.5 billion (roughly $4.9 billion) in green subsidies to British manufacturers to aid the nation’s green energy transition. The subsidies will go to eight different sectors in which Treasury Chancellor Jeremy Hunt says the U.K. “is or could be world-leading” over the next five years (starting in 2025), with the largest portion of the investment going to the automotive industry.

This investment is the U.K.’s response to billions in investment in the green transition seen in the U.S. and EU in the past year and a half.


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