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Good Climate News

Good Climate News this Week: The EPA’s Youth Advisory Council, Environmental Justice, E-bikes, and More!

Nov 27, 2023

Every Monday, we round up five of the best good climate news stories we’re celebrating this week. This week we’re covering the EPA’s new Youth Advisory Council, New Mexico’s clean car standards, environmental justice initiatives, progress on offshore wind, and the environmental impact of e-bikes.

1. EPA announces members of first ever National Environmental Youth Advisory Council

Michael Regan congratulating the new members of the National Environmental Youth Advisory Council.
Credit: EPA

EPA administrator Michael Regan announced the appointment of 16 youth climate leaders to the nation’s first ever National Environmental Youth Advisory Council (NEYAC). The members of the newly established federal advisory council, who range in age from 18-29, will advise Administrator Regan directly on a variety of environmental issues that impact young people.

Council members were selected from a pool of over 1,000 applicants with experience in climate change and environmental justice and were chosen to represent the EPA’s 10 regions, including urban, rural and Tribal communities, and to represent a variety of lived experiences and interests.

Source: EPA

2. New Mexico to adopt clean car, truck standards

A worker completes a vehicle emissions test.
Credit: Adobe

New Mexico has voted to partially adopt California’s Advanced Clean Car II standards with an ultimate goal of 82% of new cars and light-duty trucks to be zero-emission by 2032.

The new rules will require an increasing percentage of cars sold in New Mexico to have zero tailpipe emissions, starting with model year 2027. The adoption of these standards is an “important step forward for our climate and air quality goals, especially in environmental justice and frontline communities,” said New Mexico Environment Department Cabinet Secretary James Kenney.

The new standards, along with federal incentives that will help people save on electric vehicle purchases, will help accelerate adoption of electric cars in the state.

Source: NM Political Report

3. EPA announces $2 billion for environmental justice

Michael Regan, head of EPA, speaking on a panel.
Credit: chesbayprogram

The Biden administration has announced it will invest $2 billion in what EPA administrator Michael Regan has called the “single largest investment in environmental justice history.”

These grants funded by this money will directly fund projects in communities on the frontlines of the climate crisis who experience disproportionate levels of pollution and other environmental harms and are made possible by the Inflation Reduction Act as part of the Biden Administration’s Justice40 Initiative.

Projects funded by the grants will include initiatives to improve communities’ climate resiliency; mitigate effects from urban heat islands, extreme heat and wildfires; reduce indoor and outdoor air pollution; and offer workforce development in support of clean energy jobs.

Source: POLITICO, EPA

4. First offshore wind turbine installed off New York coast

A sailboat passes a lighthouse and wind turbines as it enters Lake Erie at Buffalo, New York.
Credit: Michelle Frechette

The first of 12 wind turbines has been installed in the South Fork Wind project off the coast of Montauk Point in New York.

Once completed, the South Fork Wind project will produce enough clean energy to power around 70,000 homes and help New York reach its goal of developing 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind energy by 2035, according to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA).

Source: Reuters

5. E-bikes are slashing global oil demand

Closeup of an electric bike in a Fall landscape.
Credit: Khürt Williams

E-bike popularity is skyrocketing. Last year, there were over 280 million (and counting) electric mopeds, scooters, motorcycles, and three-wheelers on the road globally.

These alternative transportation methods are cheaper and more efficient than personal vehicles for short trips, which account for about 60% of car trips made in the U.S. The immense popularity of e-bikes is already contributing to an estimated 1% drop in oil demand globally – about a million barrels of oil a day – according to a report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

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