This Week In Climate Action


Jun 21, 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, Instagram, and TikTok.


“When it comes to getting our grid in shape, support is needed from literally every corner. It’s going to take everyone.”

Peder Mewis, regional policy director for the Clean Grid Alliance, on ensuring that clean energy developments are able to connect to the grid.

“With these agreements, there is hope. We feel like this is a moment in time. If it doesn’t happen now, it will be too late.”

Tom Iverson, regional coordinator for Yakama Nation Fisheries, on U.S. government’s acknowledgement of Northwest dams’ devastating impact on Native communities, and investment of $1 billion to restore the region’s salmon runs.

“As long as humans fill the atmosphere with fossil-fuel emissions, the heat will only get worse – vulnerable people will continue to die and the cost of living will continue to increase.”

Izidine Pinto, co-author and researcher at the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute, on the role of climate change in recent extreme heat waves.


BIDEN-HARRIS ADMINISTRATION ANNOUNCES FINAL RULES TO ENSURE GOOD-PAYING CLEAN ENERGY JOBS, EXPAND CLEAN ENERGY WORKFORCE: The U.S. Department of the Treasury and the IRS released final rules on prevailing wage and registered apprenticeship (PWA) requirements in the Inflation Reduction Act. As part of the President’s Investing in America agenda, these rules will help create a strong pipeline of highly-skilled workers to support the growing clean energy economy and ensure that clean energy jobs are good-paying.

OUR TAKE: LCV Vice President of Government Affairs Sara Chieffo said, “We applaud the   Biden-Harris administration for finalizing this new rule, which marks a crucial step forward toward delivering on the promise of creating good-paying, family-sustaining, union jobs as a core part of building a clean energy future. This administration understands that good jobs and climate action go hand in hand, and we look forward to working together to ensure that these rules are effectively implemented, so workers and communities across the country can continue to see the impacts of and benefit from the President’s historic affordable clean energy plan.”

BOEM GREEN LIGHTS CONSTRUCTION FOR SUNRISE WIND: The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) announced their approval of Sunrise Wind’s Construction and Operations plan, clearing the offshore wind project to begin construction.

OUR TAKE: LCV Senior Government Affairs Advocate David Shadburn said, “LCV is thrilled that BOEM has given the green light for construction to begin on Sunrise Wind. Once completed, Sunrise Wind will generate enough clean, affordable energy to power more than 320,000 New York homes per year, further advancing the Biden-Harris administration’s goal of deploying 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030. We are excited to continue to work with the administration to direct federal funding from the President’s affordable clean energy plan to offshore wind and other clean energy projects that will bring clean, reliable, and affordable energy to communities nationwide.”

NYLCV TAKE: New York LCV President Julie Tighe said, “Today is a great day for New York and its effort to tackle the climate crisis because we need to transition off of fossil fuels and start delivering on clean energy like offshore wind. We congratulate Orsted on receiving BOEM’s final approval for Sunrise Wind, which will allow the state to begin realizing the benefits of this shovel-ready project, starting with hundreds of well-paying construction jobs on its way to delivering 924 MW of renewable offshore wind energy, resulting in fewer greenhouse gas emissions and cleaner air for New Yorkers.”

FIRST AMERICAN CLIMATE CORPS CLASS SWORN IN: The first class of President Biden’s American Climate Corps has been sworn in. All 9,000 members of the program’s inaugural class will be sworn in to their paid federal, state, and local roles by the end of the month.

BIDEN-HARRIS ADMINISTRATION RELEASES AGENCY CLIMATE ADAPTATION PLANS: The Biden-Harris administration released updated Climate Adaptation Plans that expand agency efforts to ensure their facilities, employees, resources, and operations are climate resilient. This plan was developed by more than 20 federal agencies and advances the Biden-Harris administration’s National Climate Resilience Framework.

BIDEN-HARRIS ADMINISTRATION ANNOUNCES PLAN TO PROTECT AND STEWARD OLD-GROWTH FORESTS ON NATIONAL FOREST SYSTEM LANDS: The Biden-Harris administration announced that they are advancing the USDA’s proposal to amend all 128 forest land plans to better steward old-growth forests across the National Forest System. The proposed plan will use the best available science and tap Indigenous Knowledge to create new strategies to conserve, restore, and cultivate old-growth forest conditions across our national forests.

DOI ANNOUNCES ADDITIONAL $43 MILLION INVESTMENT FOR RURAL WATER PROJECTS: The Department of the Interior announced an additional $43 million investment for rural water projects, as part of President Biden’s Investing in America Agenda. These projects will be focused on providing clean, reliable drinking water to rural and Tribal communities. This investment builds on from the previously announced $733 million for rural water projects from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, and will support six projects already underway.


LCV VICTORY FUND AND NRDC ACTION VOTES LAUNCH UPDATED GIVEGREEN DONOR PLATFORM: LCV Victory Fund and NRDC Action Votes announced the launch of a newly updated online donor platform through GiveGreen, the fundraising program which aims to elect pro-environment candidates to public office. Donors have contributed a record $36 million to candidates via GiveGreen in the current political cycle, far outpacing the program’s performance in 2020 and 2022. Check out the updated site!

OUR TAKE: LCV Victory Fund President Gene Karpinski said, “Climate donors have already set the pace for GiveGreen to raise more dollars for candidates than ever before, and we’re thrilled to add even more capabilities for members to easily share ways to support climate champions with their friends and family. GiveGreen donors understand the urgency of the climate crisis and extreme weather in our communities and are showing their strong support of climate champions who will fight to protect our communities, clean air and water, our public lands, and future generations.”

NRDC ACTION VOTES TAKE: NRDC Action Votes Executive Director Kevin S. Curtis said, “The growth of GiveGreen parallels the rise of climate as a potent political issue, and I don’t think that’s just a coincidence. Now this expanded platform will give more political donors even more tools to send an unmistakable message to candidates that climate action is a winning issue, and that we’ve got their backs.”

BIDEN-HARRIS ADMINISTRATION ANNOUNCES NEW ACTIONS TO KEEP FAMILIES TOGETHER: President Biden announced new actions for people who have been in the U.S. for many years to keep American families together and enable more young people to contribute to our economy. The Department of Homeland Security will now take action to ensure that U.S. citizens with noncitizen spouses and children can keep their families together.

OUR TAKE: LCV Senior Vice President of Community and Civic Engagement Sandra Pérez González said, “We can’t have environmental justice without a healthy democracy and an immigration system that respects the dignity and humanity of the people and communities most impacted by the climate crisis in our country. The Biden-Harris administration is taking bold action to keep families together and ensure hundreds of thousands of children and spouses of citizens can access their legal pathway to residency. Communities across the country are seeing the severe impacts of the climate crisis and extreme weather firsthand, and as temperatures continue to rise, our immigrant communities are often on the front lines of environmental injustice, are excluded from opportunities like resiliency investments, and are denied security. This is a step towards realizing an immigration system that centers people and their lived experience, and LCV will continue to support more just and equitable immigration policy for future generations.”

CHISPA TAKE: Chispa Senior Director Estefany Carrasco-González said, “Chispa welcomes today’s executive actions to keep families together. Through my personal experience and our work on the ground in the communities affected most by environmental injustice, we know that families need stability just as much as they need clean air, clean water and a healthy environment. Immigrant families who pay taxes and contribute to their communities often bear the brunt of climate inequality, and children of color especially need all the strong family support that is possible to thrive. Expanding pathways for immigrants and keeping families together, including mixed-status families, will make our communities’ environmental and local work, and our nation, stronger.”

DAVE MCCORMICK TEAMS UP WITH DONALD TRUMP FOR RALLY AMID HEATWAVE: Donald Trump is teaming up with GOP Senate hopeful Dave McCormick tomorrow for a rally during the unusually early and record-breaking heatwave that is surging across Philadelphia and the Northeast. 

OUR TAKE: LCV Victory Fund Senior Vice President of Campaigns Pete Maysmith said, “McCormick’s decision to team up with Trump, a known climate denier, proves that he is not the ‘conservationist’ he claims to be–no surprise for someone who also claims to live in Pennsylvania when he really lives in Connecticut. This extreme heatwave in the Northeast is a symptom of the excessive pollution Trump and MAGA republicans intend to continue. It’s no secret that Trump has an extensive record of calling climate change a hoax, rolling back 100 environmental protections, opposing clean energy actions, and siding with Big Oil and Big Polluters. But, McCormick is a former hedge fund CEO who supports tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans and Big Oil, and has already committed to rolling back clean energy legislation that would create 200,000 new jobs.

Meanwhile, Joe Biden and Bob Casey have championed clean energy solutions that have created a boom of good, family-sustaining jobs and are cutting energy bills for everyone. From the heatwaves in the Midwest and East, fires in the West, and a storm forming in the Gulf, people across the country are feeling the impacts of what happens when politicians cater to Big Polluter interests. President Biden is committed to continuing to put the health and safety of our communities, families, and environment first.”

LCV ACTION FUND ENDORSED CANDIDATES WIN VIRGINIA PRIMARY ELECTIONS: LCV Action Fund Endorsed Candidates Representative Gerry Connolly (VA-11) and U.S. House candidate Missy Cotter Smasal (VA-02) won their respective primary elections. LCVAF endorsed U.S. Representatives Jennifer McClellan (VA-04) and Don Beyer (VA-08) also advanced to the general election in Virginia.

OUR TAKE: LCV Action Fund Senior Vice President for Government Affairs Tiernan Sittenfeld said, “Congratulations to Representatives Jennifer McClellan, Don Beyer, Gerry Connolly and to Missy Cotter Smasal on their victories tonight in Virginia! Summer has just started and Virginia communities are already experiencing a record-threatening and prolonged heat wave across the commonwealth. The climate crisis is here and that is why LCV Action Fund is thrilled to support climate champions like Representatives McClellan, Beyer, Connolly and Cotter Smasal who will always protect our communities, clean air and water, public lands and fight for a just and equitable clean energy future.”

COALITION WARNS OF IMPACTS FROM POTENTIAL SCOTUS DECISION IN RELENTLESS: Over 90 local, state, and national organizations joined a letter led by United for Democracy to members of Congress sounding the alarm about the threat posed to our protections from bad actors by the pending case Relentless Inc. v. Department of Commerce, which threatens to upend 40 years of legal precedent on the ability of civil servants at public agencies like the EPA to protect us.

COALITION TAKE: In the press release for the letter, United for Democracy Campaign Director Stasha Rhodes said, “In the Relentless cases, the right-wing justices threaten to make their greatest power grab yet — and if last week’s Garland v. Cargill decision is any indication, it’s a threat they are likely to make good on. Yet in the face of the right-wing justices’ blatant disregard for Congress’ authority under ‘checks and balances’ and the rollback of their constituents’ rights and freedoms, Congress has virtually ignored the stakes in these cases. Our organizations, and the millions we represent, know that we are running out of time for Congress to stop the right-wing justices before they continue trading in on the lives, freedoms, and democracy of the American people in order to boost their billionaire backers. It’s time for Congress to act.”

HART RESEARCH RELEASES SURVEY RESULTS ON CLIMATE AND CLEAN ENERGY ECONOMY MESSAGING IN PRESIDENTIAL RACE: Hart Research has released the results of a survey on the best climate and clean energy economy messaging to make the case against Trump in seven key battleground states Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. The survey was paid for by LCV and Climate Power. Check out the results.


VERMONT ENACTS 100% RENEWABLE ENERGY STANDARD: After passing an updated Renewable Energy Standard (RES) last month, the Vermont legislature voted this week to override Governor Phil Scott’s veto to enact it into law, making Vermont the 18th state to commit to 100% clean energy. Under the RES, the state’s two largest utilities – which together serve about 70% of the state – are required to source their power from 100% clean and renewable sources by 2030, the nation’s fastest timeline. All other utilities are required to achieve this goal by 2035.

VCV TAKE: Vermont Conservation Voters Executive Director Lauren Hierl said, “As the impacts of the climate crisis continue to grow, the Legislature recognized that we have a responsibility to our children to build a clean energy future. I’m grateful legislators stood up for what is right and urgent in today’s important vote for climate action.”

NEW YORK GOVERNOR HOCHUL HALTS CONGESTION PRICING: Earlier this month, New York Governor Kathy Hochul halted a first-of-its-kind congestion pricing program in New York City, which was planned to go into effect at the end of June. LCV joined a coalition of environmental groups in a letter to Governor Hochul, urging her to recommit to the program.

COALITION TAKE: From the letter, “This decision will have significant consequences for New York, and it will reverberate nationally. Your proposed indefinite delay poses a significant risk to achieving New York’s climate goals and the imperative to both reduce traffic congestion and ensure sustainable funding for more affordable and reliable transportation.”

WILDFIRES RAGE IN NEW MEXICO: Several wildfires burning since early this week have destroyed more than 23,000 acres in New Mexico, forcing the evacuation of thousands and killing at least two people. The fires were 0% contained as of Wednesday night and continue to pose a dangerous threat. Now, several New Mexico communities are also facing threats of severe flooding and debris flows as the already water-soaked lands, and some wildfire burn scarred areas, are being hit with heavy rainfall.

NYC PROPOSES BILL TO SHIFT COST OF LEAD PIPE REPLACEMENT TO PROPERTY OWNERS: The New York City Council has proposed a bill that would require property owners to bear the cost of replacing lead pipes within the next decade, potentially costing thousands of dollars.

NYLCV TAKE: New York LCV Senior Vice President Josh Klainberg said, “With an estimated one in five New Yorkers possibly getting their drinking water from lead service lines – and all of the attendant health consequences that result from that – the city should be planning a comprehensive lead service line replacement program at no upfront cost to the homeowner. Instead, Intro 942 would require homeowners to foot the bill — up to $15,000 — which is unfair, impractical, and will only delay the replacement of these toxic pipes. We call on City Council members to remove this ‘rotten apple plan’ and replace it with an alternative that is fair to all New Yorkers.”

FEDERAL APPEALS COURT REMANDS NESSEL V. ENBRIDGE CASE BACK TO STATE COURT: After urging from Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals directed a federal district court to remand her ongoing lawsuit against the Line 5 oil pipeline, Nessel v. Enbridge, back to state court where it was originally litigated for over a year. Nessel is committed to shutting down the old, dangerous pipeline that currently runs through the Straits of Mackinac in order to protect the fragile Great Lakes ecosystem.

CHISPA AZ EMPOWERS YOUTH CIVIC LEADERS IN MARICOPA COUNTY: Chispa Arizona’s summer initiative “Plantando Semillas” (“Planting Seeds”) has kicked off with 40 young future civic leaders in Maricopa County! Throughout this season, youth participants will draft legislation and receive professional development in media and advocacy skills! Check out Chispa Arizona’s post from the first meeting!

CHISPA MD PREPARES THE LEADERS OF TOMORROW THROUGH ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE WORKSHOPS: This week, our Chispa Maryland team conducted community workshops in Langley Park and Baltimore. They discussed the significance of environmental justice for our communities, exploring ways to improve the quality of the air we breathe, the parks we enjoy, the water we drink, and the overall health of our neighborhoods. Check out Chispa Maryland’s post!


ON THE BLOG: This week, LCV celebrated Juneteenth with a blog on how President Biden’s Justice40 Initiative is bringing benefits to communities of color and low-income communities who have faced decades of over-pollution and disinvestment. And, with SCOTUS season in full swing, we are breaking down some of the most impactful cases in the environment and democracy space that the Supreme Court is expected to issue rulings on by the end of the month.

ON OUR SOCIALS: It’s getting hot in here, so check out this hack for staying cool in this scorching weather, and get a glimpse into how we’re really feeling as SCOTUS turns up the heat and threatens even more of our rights. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, fighting for people and the planet is so brat.


JUNE 25: Colorado and New York primary elections.

JUNE 27: First presidential debate.

JUNE 28: POWER BACK TO THE PEOPLE rally outside the Supreme Court at 9:30am. RSVP to attend.