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.
“In Florida, we don’t take this lightly; communities have endured environmental, social and economic impacts because these disasters continue to occur. Pollution and devastation from past spills motivate locals to come together to resist the continued threat Gulf drilling poses to Tampa Bay. I joined this movement because I’m worried about my future.”
— Chloe McKenna, senior at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida, in a recent op-ed published by the Tampa Bay Times titled “Offshore Drilling Puts Our Future at Risk.” In the piece, Mckenna recalls the trauma of experiencing the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and calls on everyone to push federal leaders to protect the Gulf Coast from more offshore drilling.
“Granting MVP more time to harm Appalachian communities and water resources is appalling, but FERC’s decision will only strengthen the growing national opposition against this unnecessary fracked-gas pipeline.”
— Jessica Sims, Virginia Field Coordinator for Appalachian Voices, in response to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s decision to grant the requested extension for the Mountain Valley Pipeline despite thousands of comments in opposition.
“The climate crisis is directly connected to fossil-fueled conflicts and wars—not only the Ukraine war but other conflicts we currently have in many places of the Earth: in Latin America, in Africa, in Asia. Speaking about one war, we also have to interlink the social and climate justice everywhere on Earth. So why are we speaking about phasing out fossil fuels? Because enough is enough. I don’t think that petro-colonialism and petro-dictators paid and fueled and empowered by enormous fossil fuel revenues can rule any longer.”
—Svitlana Romanko, a climate leader who remains inside Ukraine and is organizing from Ivano Frankivsk, a city in western Ukraine. She recently founded Razom We Stand, an international nonprofit born out of the war focused on fossil fuel conflicts. She has said she is fighting to see a “green revolution everywhere.”
LCVVF ANNOUNCES $2 MILLION MEDIA CAMPAIGN FOR GENERAL ELECTION: LCV Victory Fund announced its first six paid media investments into House races for the 2022 General Election on Friday afternoon. The launch comes on the heels of President Biden signing the historic Inflation Reduction Act and after many primary wins by LCV Action Fund endorsed candidates.
The ad campaigns will run in the battleground districts of CA-49, CT-05, KS-03, NM-02, PA-07 and WA-08, with the first airing ad calling attention to Rep. Susan Wild (PA-07)’s opponent, Lisa Scheller, and her company’s dirty record of breaking environmental safeguards. The campaign is part of the $100 million Climate Votes Project launched earlier this year by LCVVF, Climate Power Action, Climate Reality Action Fund, EDF Action Votes, NRDC Action Votes and NextGen PAC.
OUR TAKE: LCV Victory Fund Senior National Campaigns Director Megan Jacobs said, “Environmental champions in the House just voted to lower costs for families, create millions of jobs, and take the strongest climate action in U.S. history – we must re-elect House Democrats in battleground districts to continue to build a just and thriving clean energy economy. There is no place in Congress for pro-polluter candidates who are completely out of step with the vast majority of voters in this country who support the Inflation Reduction Act.”
CLIMATE LEADERS LIVE: Last week, LCV Senior Director of Governmental Affairs Matthew Davis joined a panel discussion hosted by Climate Solutions to discuss the benefits of the Inflation Reduction Act and what it took to get us here. View a recording of the event HERE.
LCV ACTION FUND CONGRATULATES ENDORSED FLORIDA CANDIDATES ON PRIMARY ELECTION VICTORIES: After an exciting primary election night on Tuesday in Florida, LCV Action Fund congratulated U.S. Senate nominee Representative Val Demings, Chair Kathy Castor (FL-14), Representatives Darren Soto (FL-09) and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-25), and House candidates Maxwell Frost (FL-10), Eric Lynn (FL-13), Jared Moskowitz (FL-23) and Annette Taddeo (FL-27) on their respective victories in the Florida primary election.
OUR TAKE: LCV Action Fund Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Tiernan Sittenfeld said, “Congratulations to these climate and environmental justice leaders on their victories in Florida. Communities in Florida are on the frontlines of the climate crisis and we are proud to support these environmental champions in their work to defend Florida’s natural resources, hold big polluters accountable, grow our clean energy economy, and create high-paying jobs. We look forward to more victories in November and will do everything we can to help make that happen.”
LCV ACTION FUND ENDORSES MARK KELLY FOR SENATE: The League of Conservation Voters (LCV) Action Fund, which works to elect pro-environment candidates, announced on Monday the endorsement of Mark Kelly for re-election to the U.S. Senate representing Arizona. Senator Mark Kelly has earned an outstanding lifetime score of 97% on the LCV’s National Environmental Scorecard.
OUR TAKE: LCV Action Fund Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Tiernan Sittenfeld said, “Senator Mark Kelly has demonstrated his strong commitment to climate action and building a clean energy economy for Arizona in the Senate. LCV Action Fund is proud to support Senator Kelly for re-election because we know that he will continue to fight for Arizona’s communities, creating good-paying clean energy jobs and securing Arizona’s water future. Now more than ever, we need leaders like Senator Kelly who are committed to prioritizing people over corporate polluters and their profits and who we can count on to fight for Arizona’s clean air, clean water, and resilient climate for all communities.”
PFAS ARE HAZARDOUS TO HUMAN AND ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH: The Environmental Protection Agency announced Friday that it would designate two per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) as hazardous under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA). The two are some of the most widely used and notoriously harmful substances to public health and the environment, making this an important step towards accelerating contamination cleanups, holding polluters accountable and protecting communities. The effort was led by Rep. Debbie Dingell (MI-12), who first introduced her bipartisan PFAS Action Act in 2019.
OUR TAKE: Deputy Legislative Director Madeleine Foote said, “We are grateful to Administrator Regan and the EPA for designating PFOA and PFOS as hazardous substances. This is an essential step toward finally holding polluters accountable who for decades have harmed communities across the country by contaminating their food, water, air, and lands while posing significant dangers to our health, especially in low wealth communities and communities of color who are disproportionately exposed to toxic pollution. Today’s actions will make it easier for the EPA to prioritize cleanup of contaminated sites, and it will give local governments and small businesses the power to ensure polluters — not communities — bear the cost.”
OIL COMPANIES GIVE UP THEIR LEASES: The Arctic National Refuge Wildlife Refuge only has one leaseholder left after the last remaining private company, Knik Arms Services, pulled out of their oil and gas lease on Monday. The decision follows in the steps of Regenerate Alaska, who also exited their lease in June. These actions show that companies recognize that drilling in the Arctic Refuge is bad for business in the face of opposition from Indigenous people, the majority of Americans who support protecting the Refuge, and the refusal of every major US bank to finance drilling there. The land – called Iizhik Gwats’an Gwandaii Goodlit (The Sacred Place where Life Begins) – is critical to sustaining the Indigenous Gwich’in Nation who have depended on the Refuge’s Coastal Plain since time immemorial. Though the Gwich’in Nation has been critical to protecting the Arctic Refuge, they continue to be one of the communities left behind in Congressional climate action – recently, a provision to repeal the drilling program in the Arctic Refuge was left out of the Inflation Reduction Act.
SENATOR BENNET LEADS CALL FOR A NATIONAL MONUMENT IN THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS: On Friday, a delegation of Colorado Democrats, led by Senator Bennet and including Senator Hickenlooper, Rep. Neguse, and Governor Polis, released a letter asking President Biden to both designate the Camp Hale – Continental Divide a national monument and protect the Thompson Divide from oil and gas leasing via a mineral withdrawal. Situated in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, the Camp Hale area has played an important role in Colorado and U.S. history as the training site for the legendary 10th Mountain Division. If designated, it would be the first National Monument created by Biden and would help boost Colorado’s outdoor recreation economy.
STATE AFFILIATES CONTINUE TO EDUCATE COMMUNITIES ON INFLATION REDUCTION ACT BENEFITS: LCV’s state affiliates across the Conservation Voter Movement are educating communities about the benefits of the Inflation Reduction Act and the role states will play in implementing the bill swiftly and justly. Some of the most exciting portions of the bill could supercharge state climate action, making it critical that state environmental leaders communicate locally about how these federal investments will empower their communities. This week:
THE JERSEY SHORE WELCOMES WIND TURBINES FOR A CLEAN ENERGY FUTURE: On Monday, Executive Director of the New Jersey League of Conservation Voters Ed Potosnak published an op-ed in the Philadelphia Inquirer, “Wind turbines will help — not hurt — the Jersey Shore.”
NJLCV TAKE: Executive Director of the New Jersey League of Conservation Voters Ed Potosnak said, “Offshore wind is a vast, untapped resource that can help us not only reach our climate and environmental goals, but also our energy and economic goals. The development and distribution of clean, renewable offshore wind energy will support the creation of thousands of secure, well-paying union jobs and a stable year-round economy for New Jersey…New Jersey is perfectly positioned — by location and with our local labor pool — to be a hub for offshore wind.”
CHISPA MARYLAND ENJOYS OPEN SPACE AT ANACOSTIA RIVER: This past week, the Chispa Maryland team met with the Defensores de La Cuenca and Anacostia Watershed Society for an afternoon at the Anacostia River. Chispa Maryland promoters and their families had the opportunity to learn about the river and nature.
CHISPA ARIZONA DEVELOPS COMMUNITY LEADERS: Last night, Chispa Arizona’s Deputy Communications Director hosted a Media Spokesperson Training. Chispa Arizona Members were invited to attend this 1.5 hour training with Communications Deputy Director Nuvia Enriquez to receive certification as official spokespeople for Chispa Arizona. Check out more HERE.
ALL OF AUGUST: Poll Worker Recruitment Month
SEPTEMBER 6: Massachusetts Primary Election
SEPTEMBER 11- 17: Truck Driver Appreciation Week
SEPTEMBER 13: Delaware, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island Primary Elections
SEPTEMBER 15 – OCTOBER 15: Hispanic Heritage Month
SEPTEMBER 20: National Voter Registration Day
WEEK OF SEPTEMBER 20: Civic Engagement Week of Action
SEPTEMBER 24: National Public Lands Day
NOVEMBER 8: Election Day