This Week In Climate Action


Jun 9, 2023

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.


“This isn’t Blade Runner — it’s real life. And it’s a direct result of the climate crisis.”

-New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy in a  tweet regarding worsening air quality on the East Coast brought on by ongoing wildfires in Canada.

“Gov. Youngkin’s anti-RGGI agenda is cruel and leaves vulnerable communities unprepared for the extreme heat and hurricane season that’s to come. These actions are not legal, and it’s why electing climate champions should be top of mind for voters this year. We’re the leaders who’ll end Youngkin’s petty anti-climate agenda for good and keep our communities safe.”

– State Senator Jeremy McPike on Virginia’s withdrawal from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.

“The way to read today’s 5-4 decision is that Alabama was so racist in the drawing of its congressional map that even the Chief Justice who gutted the Voting Rights Act thought a small portion of it was still necessary to prohibit this kind of conduct.”

-Former Representative Mondaire Jones in a tweet on the Allen v. Milligan decision by the U.S. Supreme Court regarding racist gerrymandering in Alabama.



MI LEADERS CENTER RACIAL EQUITY IN 100% CLEAN ENERGY TRANSITION: Last week, Michigan lawmakers and Governor Whitmer’s administration held an event in Lansing to discuss how to properly center racial equity in discussions about 100% clean energy targets. Speakers highlighted the importance of ensuring that wealth discrepancies in Michigan aren’t unintentionally heightened as investments for clean energy infrastructure made possible by the Inflation Reduction Act and the Biden-Harris administration’s affordable clean energy plan are allocated throughout the state. They also discussed how combatting redlining must be central to environmental justice goals. Read more here

NH PASSES LEGISLATION TO BUILD OFFSHORE WIND INDUSTRY: New Hampshire is working to catch up in the race to develop offshore wind in New England with two new bills passed this legislative session. The first bill will help develop an offshore wind workforce through establishing and funding training programs, and the second allows the state’s electric utilities to sign contracts with long-term energy projects, such as offshore wind farms. These bills, along with the investments made possible by the federal clean energy plan, will benefit local economies in New Hampshire and create thousands of high-paying jobs in renewed domestic manufacturing and maintenance of offshore wind farms. 


SCOTUS UPHOLDS VOTING RIGHTS IN ALABAMA REDISTRICTING CASE: On Thursday, the Supreme Court voted 5-4 to uphold the lower court’s ruling on racist gerrymandering practices in Alabama in the Allen v. Milligan case. The ruling came as a relief to voting rights groups, but does not erase far-right Justices’ repeated rollbacks of voting rights. While the right decision was made in this egregious instance to reaffirm the remaining protections of the Voting Rights Act, attacks on voting rights like the ones we have seen over the last decade are why we need Congress to pass the Freedom to Vote Act, John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, and Judiciary Act. They are also why we need states to pass protections like the new Connecticut Voting Rights Act.

OUR TAKE: LCV Democracy Program Director Justin Kwasa said, “Today’s decision to affirm the lower court’s ruling on Alabama’s racist gerrymander is the correct one but does not erase a decade of relentless attacks by far-right extremist Justices to undermine the Voting Rights Act and voters’ fundamental right to vote. Voters should be choosing their representatives, not the other way around, and we must remain vigilant against ongoing and future threats to our democracy from the far-right. Congress must take immediate action to ensure protection for the rights of voters, especially Black voters, voters of color, and voters in other historically excluded communities, by passing the Freedom to Vote Act and the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, in addition to the Judiciary Act to expand and rebalance this captured Supreme Court.”

MIKE PENCE ENTERS PRESIDENTIAL RACE: Former Vice President and former Trump running mate Mike Pence has declared his candidacy in the 2024 presidential race. 

OUR TAKE: LCV Victory Fund Senior Vice President of Campaigns Pete Maysmith said, “Whether it was in the Indiana Governor’s mansion, Congress, or the White House Mike Pence has stood in the way of environmental protections at every turn. As Governor of Indiana he aided and abetted rolling back an energy efficiency law that would have saved Hoosiers money, fought a state clean energy standard, and took hundreds of thousands in contributions from the oil and gas industry. In Congress he earned a near rock bottom  4% career score on LCV’s Scorecard. As an extremist MAGA Vice President he served in the most anti-environmental administration in American history, overseeing the largest rollback of our public lands, gutting of the EPA, and pulling out of the Paris Climate Agreement. Pence has proven no matter what office he holds that he’s on the side of big polluters, not the voters. His addition to the Republican presidential field brings just another climate-denying puppet of Big Oil.”

NEW ADS: CONSTITUENTS NEED TO KNOW LAWMAKERS’ VOTES ON CLEAN WATER: LCV released new ads today praising members of Congress for voting to support clean water protections while calling out Senator Kyrsten Sinema’s vote to eliminate them. Earlier this year, Congress voted on H.J. Res. 27, a Congressional Review Act joint resolution to block the Biden-Harris administration’s Clean Water Restoration Rule, aka “Waters of the United States” rule, which aimed to clarify jurisdiction of the Clean Water Act. This dangerous legislation would have severely weakened the Clean Water Act by revoking important protections for critical waters and allowing unregulated pollution and destruction of everything from small streams to rivers to wetlands. Fortunately, the bill was vetoed by President Biden, and an attempt at overriding the veto failed. See the ads running on digital and social channels praising Senator Mark Kelly (AZ) and Representatives Gallego (AZ-03), Lee (PA-12), Slotkin (MI-07), Spanberger (VA-07), Stansbury (NM-01), and Sykes (OH-34) here

OUR TAKE: LCV Deputy Legislative Director Madeleine Foote said, “These leaders stood up to protect our most precious resources. They deserve thanks for putting people ahead of big polluters. We know how important clean water is to everything we love and rely on in our communities. ” 

JUDICIAL ETHICS AND ANTI-CORRUPTION ACT REINTRODUCED IN CONGRESS: Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Representative Pramila Jayapal of Washington reintroduced the Judicial Ethics and Anti-Corruption Act in Congress this week. The legislation aims to restore the public’s faith in the courts by strengthening judicial ethics laws and creating an enforceable code of conduct for the U.S. Supreme Court, as well as prohibiting federal judges from owning individual stock. LCV has endorsed this legislation as part of our ongoing fight for fair, just, and ethical courts. 



CONNECTICUT ENACTS STATE VOTING RIGHTS ACT AND EARLY VOTING: On Tuesday, Connecticut lawmakers passed a state-level Voting Rights Act (CTVRA) to strengthen protections against racial discrimination in voting and expand voting access in the state. The CTVRA is the most comprehensive state-level voting rights act in the country. The coalition leading the effort that helped to pass the CTVRA released a statement on their victory. On Friday, Connecticut LCV hosted its post-session debrief along with Senate and House majority leaders and the Connecticut secretary of state. 

COALITION TAKE: A coalition of 29 civil rights, voting rights, labor, service, community, and faith-based organizations issued the following statement in response to the passage of the CTVRA: 

“We thank and congratulate the Connecticut Legislature on the final passage of the Connecticut Voting Rights Act, which takes a major step towards ensuring the right to vote for every eligible voter across the state. We celebrate the collaboration and bipartisan support for the CTVRA, and commend its leading champions, Senator Mae Flexer and Representative Matt Blumenthal, as well as the leadership of the Connecticut Black and Puerto Rican Caucus for their tireless work to get this historic legislation to the finish line.

Connecticut is poised to become a national leader by serving a critical local need. The passage of this landmark bill is a monumental achievement that is strongly supported by Connecticut voters across race and party lines. It will safeguard the right to vote and build a stronger, more inclusive democracy—both here in Connecticut and across the nation, by serving as a model for other states. By recognizing the urgent need to protect and expand access to the ballot box, Connecticut lawmakers have taken a crucial step towards ensuring that every eligible citizen can exercise their right to vote freely, without undue barriers or discrimination.”

KEY BILL TO DEVELOP GULF OF MAINE OFFSHORE WIND MOVES FORWARD: A bill to responsibly develop offshore wind in the Gulf of Maine passed out of the Energy, Utilities, and Technology Committee on Wednesday and is headed to the state Senate. This was the first hurdle for the critical legislation which has gained support from both labor and environmental groups due to its strong workforce, wildlife and equity standards. On Monday, Maine Conservation Voters (MCV) Executive Director Maureen Drouin co-authored an op-ed in the Portland Press Herald urging the Maine legislature to pass the offshore wind procurement bill along with another piece of legislation regarding offshore wind ports. Read the statement from MCV and their partners in the Maine Environmental Priorities Coalition here, and read testimony in support of the bill delivered last month by MCV Energy Justice Manager, Kelt Wilska here.

MCV TAKE: Kelt Wilska, Energy Justice Manager at Maine Conservation Voters said, “Maine needs offshore wind power, and we need offshore wind power that’s developed responsibly. That’s exactly what this bill does. We have the opportunity to launch a new, affordable energy source, grow good-paying jobs for our workers, and to do so without compromising Maine values. We urge the Legislature to pass this bill and support this transformational new industry.”

CHISPAS COME TOGETHER AT GREENLATINOS TO CONTINUE THE FIGHT FOR ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE: This week, Chispa chapters from Maryland, Arizona, Nevada, Texas, and Florida gathered at the 2023 GreenLatinos National Summit to network, learn, and continue the fight for environmental justice with other Latinx leaders in the climate justice movement across the country. Check out MD’s, AZ’s, and NV’s Instagram posts from the summit!

CHISPA AZ ADVOCATES FOR GRAND CANYON NATIONAL MONUMENT PROTECTIONS: This week, Vania Guevara, Chispa Arizona Advocacy Director, advocated at the White House in support of creating the Baaj Nwaavjo I’tah Kukveni Grand Canyon National Monument to protect lands around the Grand Canyon that are important to local Native American tribes. Chispa Arizona has been working to make public lands accessible with the inclusion of indigenous voices. Hear from Guevara about this effort on Chispa AZ’s Instagram post here.



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