This Week In Climate Action


Apr 12, 2024

Your weekly resource to learn what the environmental movement is saying about the news of the day and the political fight of our generation. Be sure to follow LCV on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. 


I’m grateful the Biden EPA heard our pleas and kept its promise to the American people. 

–Grassroots activist and co-founder of Clean Cape Fear Emily Donovan on the Biden administration’s national drinking water standard. 

Renewable energy projects like Arica and Victory Pass on public lands create good-paying jobs and are crucial in achieving the Biden-Harris administration’s goal of a carbon pollution-free power sector by 2035. 

 Bureau of Land Management Director Tracy Stone Manning on the Biden Administration’s final rule to promote responsible clean energy development on public lands. 

“[The new chemical plant rule is] a starting point for lowering toxic emissions and saving the children in our community.” 

— Founder of Concerned Citizens of St. John Robert Taylor on the Environmental Protection Agency’s final rule on clean air standards for chemical plants. 


EPA RELEASES FINAL HON RULE: The EPA has issued a rule to significantly reduce toxic air pollution from chemical plants, slashing more than 6,200 tons of cancer-causing chemical emissions every year and 23,700 tons of smog-forming volatile organic compounds. This decision will reduce the number of people at elevated risk of cancer and other diseases for residents who live in communities near these plants and advance President Biden’s commitment to environmental justice. 

OUR TAKE: LCV Vice President of Government Affairs Sara Chieffo said, “The Biden-Harris administration has once again taken important steps to cut pollution that unfairly burdens fenceline communities across the country, especially those in the Gulf Coast and Ohio River Valley where there is a high concentration of toxic chemical facilities. Slashing emissions of air toxics from these facilities, like ethylene oxide and chloroprene, is essential to improve public health and we urge the administration to continue working to address the many sources of toxic air pollution that disproportionately impact communities of color and low wealth communities. Today’s rule demonstrates the Biden-Harris administration’s continued commitment to prioritizing clean, safe air for every community.” 

CHISPA TX TAKE: Chispa Texas Program Director Elida Castillo said, “As a program that is made up of frontline community members, we applaud the EPA for today’s HON rule. The right to breathe clean air should never be determined by where you live. Too many chemical plants in our communities have taken advantage of weak regulations and have spewed hazardous pollutants into our air, our water, and our land, exposing residents to harmful cancer-causing emissions. Our communities have a high proportion of residents of all ages with respiratory and heart issues resulting from the air we breathe. We cannot stress enough the need for more fenceline monitoring, and this is a positive step toward closing that gap. We thank the EPA for finalizing this rule to strengthen protections for the clean air we all deserve.” 

EPA FINALIZES FIRST-EVER NATIONAL PFAS DRINKING WATER STANDARDS: The Biden-Harris Administration has issued the first nationwide, legally enforceable drinking water standard for PFAS. The new ruling will help protect communities from these toxic PFAS, commonly referred to as “forever chemicals,” reducing exposure for approximately 100 million people. 

OUR TAKE: LCV Deputy Legislative Director Madeleine Foote said, “EPA’s first-ever national drinking water standards are a historic win for people all across the country whose health has been impacted by toxic PFAS ‘forever chemicals.’ Everyone should be able to turn on their tap and trust that the water is safe. But chemical companies and other Big Polluters have made that impossible for tens of millions of people by knowingly dumping hazardous chemicals into our waters for decades. 

The Biden administration is delivering on their commitment to protect clean water for our communities, especially communities of color and low-wealth communities disproportionately impacted by PFAS and other pollution. We applaud the administration for taking this momentous step and look forward to continuing to work together to hold the chemical companies accountable for the damage they have done to our health and to ensure that everyone, no matter their race, zip code, or income, has access to safe, clean water.” 

BLM ANNOUNCES RENEWABLE ENERGY AND OIL AND GAS REFORM RULES: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has released its final Renewable Energy Rule which aims to increase development of renewable energy, such as wind and solar, on public lands. 

OUR TAKE: LCV Conservation Program Director America Fitzpatrick said, “We’re thrilled the Biden-Harris administration is continuing their historic action on climate, clean energy jobs, and environmental justice with even more commitments and investments to advance and rapidly deploy clean energy across the country in a responsible manner. This rule would level the playing field for renewable energy companies to put our country on track toward a clean energy future to develop wind and solar projects on public lands while tackling the climate crisis, pollution, and environmental injustice. We look forward to the Biden-Harris administration continuing their strong commitment to accelerate clean energy projects and tackle the climate crisis.” 

Today, BLM also announced its Oil and Gas rule to protect public lands and hold the fossil fuel industry accountable for the impact of extractive processes on these lands. 

TAKE 2: LCV Conservation Program Director America Fitzpatrick said, “We’re thrilled the Biden-Harris administration is cracking down on Big Polluters and making sure they pay their fair share for the fossil fuels they are extracting from our public lands. These reforms are common sense and long overdue for American taxpayers and communities who have been paying the cost of cleanups for decades while communities bear the burden of the impacts from toxic pollution. President Biden has done more to hold the fossil fuel industry accountable than any president ever and is continuing to deliver on his commitments to tackle the climate crisis.” 

CONSERVATION COLORADO TAKE: Conservation Colorado Public Lands Campaign Manager Brien Webster said, “The current oil and gas leasing system is outdated and shortchanges taxpayers and harms the environment. Thanks to the leadership of the Biden Administration we have a final rule that fixes this by raising royalty rates and ensuring responsible development. It generates billions more for communities, strengthens wildlife protections, and makes companies accountable. It’s a win-win for Coloradans.” 

MCV TAKE: Montana Conservation Voters Program Director Jocelyn Leroux said, “We are excited to see the Interior Department’s new oil and gas rule, which has overwhelming support from Montana voters and will conserve the public lands that support our way of life and local economies. 93% of Montanans support requiring oil and gas companies, instead of taxpayers, to cover the clean-up costs – which is exactly what these reforms accomplish. This common-sense rule updates decades-old policies to ensure that Montana taxpayers get a fair return from development, aren’t on the hook for clean up, and have access to our state’s iconic landscapes for generations to come.” 

NCL TAKE: Nevada Conservation League Executive Director Kristee Watson said, “We are thankful the Bureau of Land Management took an important step today to prioritize Nevada communities and their needs. The oil and gas rule has vast support from Nevadans because it protects irreplaceable landscapes and ecosystems from speculative, out-of-state companies. Under today’s reforms, Nevada’s public lands will be better managed for economic drivers such as hunting, fishing, tourism, and outdoor recreation, not just oil and gas.” 


LCV LAUNCHES DIGITAL CAMPAIGN IN SUPPORT OF BIDEN-HARRIS LNG PAUSE: Late last week, LCV launched the latest wave of its digital campaign supporting the Biden administration’s pause on permitting for LNG export facilities. This campaign is a continuation of the $2 million campaign LCV announced in January in response to the Biden-Harris administration’s initial announcement. Check out the ads here, here, and here. 

OUR TAKE: LCV Vice President of Paid Communications and Elections Megan Jacobs said, “The Biden administration has made historic progress fighting the climate crisis and standing up to Big Oil, with actions like implementing the Inflation Reduction Act and pausing the development of methane export facilities. Big Oil has shown time and time again that they will do anything to line their pockets including putting our families at risk for their personal gain. The Biden-Harris administration has continued to stand up to Big Oil and demonstrate that they are committed to fighting the climate crisis and we want everyone to hear about it.” 

SENATE PASSES CRA TO BLOCK TRANSPORTATION CLIMATE POLLUTION MEASURE: The Senate voted to pass a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution ( S.J. Res. 61) to undo the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA’s) final rule setting a national performance management measure for greenhouse gas emissions. The White House announced in a statement that President Biden intends to veto the CRA. LCV sent a letter to the Senate ahead of the vote urging members to vote “no” on the resolution. 

OUR TAKE: LCV President Gene Karpinksi said, “S.J. Res. 61 is a misguided attack on FHWA’s GHG emissions performance measure that supports good-governance and helps tackle climate change. Rolling back this measure would also set a dangerous precedent for thwarting other critical environmental and public health protections.” 

LCV and state affiliates Georgia Conservation Voters and Illinois Environmental Council also joined a coalition letter opposing the CRA. 

COALITION TAKE: From the letter, “Many states are supportive of the final rule – several have already established their targets and have also expressed their support to DOT in a January letter to the Biden administration. With an unprecedented level of funding flowing towards transportation infrastructure from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and Inflation Reduction Act, transparent data on the impacts of those investments is critical and can help inform states’ transitions to a clean,  equitable, and affordable transportation system. We urge you to vote no on S.J. Res. 61/H.J. Res. 114.” 


MICHIGAN LCV PRAISES NEW REGULATIONS ON “FOREVER CHEMICALS” IN DRINKING WATER: Michigan LCV, members of the Michigan Congressional Delegation, state lawmakers, and the Great Lakes PFAS Action Network held a press event praising the EPA for finalizing the country’s first-ever national standards to regulate PFAS, also known as “forever chemicals” in drinking water. Watch a recording of the event here! 

MLCV TAKE: Michigan LCV Federal Government Affairs Director Bentley Johnson said, “Today’s announcement of the first-ever national drinking water standards for PFAS chemicals marks the most significant federal action to address these toxic ‘forever chemicals’ ever and would not have happened without President Biden’s leadership. We applaud the EPA and White House for pursuing the finalization of these standards over the last year and celebrate the positive impact the standards will have on protecting our drinking water, our health, and addressing the toxic PFAS crisis here in Michigan.” 

GLPAN TAKE: Great Lakes PFAS Action co-chair Tony Spaniola said, “This is a monumental victory for the American people and a new beginning for impacted communities across the country. These PFAS drinking water standards will save the lives of countless Americans for generations to come. Thank you to President Biden for putting public health and science above the demands of powerful special interests, to the EPA for its diligent work, and to our friends and allies in communities across the country for never giving up. Together, we have shown that government can work for all of us.” 


ON THE BLOG: Check out the latest round-up of Good Climate News on The Power Source Blog! 

ON OUR SOCIALS: We celebrated good news across the board on our socials this week, with *deep breath* a roundup of President Biden’s Top 5 climate accomplishments, EPA’s month of wins, new protections against PFAS, a BLM clean energy permitting milestone, funding for climate resilient infrastructure, new rules to cut pollution from chemical facilities, communities fighting desalination in TX, and the anniversary of Justice Ketanji Jackson Brown’s confirmation… just to name a few. 


APRIL 15: Tax day (don’t forget your clean energy tax credits!)  

APRIL 16: 10:30am ET: Monument Petition Delivery at the House triangle. 

APRIL 22: Earth Day! 

APRIL 22: Passover begins at sundown.