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This Week In Climate Action

THIS WEEK IN CLIMATE ACTION – September 01, 2022

Sep 2, 2022

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.

QUOTES OF THE WEEK:

“This is very far from a normal monsoon – it is climate dystopia at our doorstep.”

– Pakistan Climate Minister Sherry Rehman said about the monsoon-related floods that have left one third of Pakistan under water. Thousands of people have already died or been injured and millions are now displaced.

“This is our church, given to us by our creator. It gives us guidance, strength and courage and provides comfort and confidence to our younger generations moving forward in the modern world.”

— Linda Otero, a leader of the Fort Mojave Indian Tribe, speaking about the pilgrimage many Indigenous people make to Avi Kwa Ame (Spirit Mountain). The mountain is located in the Mojave Desert and Indigenous and environmental activists are calling on Biden to designate it as a National Monument.

“Climate change is magnifying the water crisis in Mississippi and its inequities. Residents of Jackson are scrambling for clean water after decades of underinvestment. Urgent, targeted action and systemic transformation is needed to ensure a just and sustainable future for all.”

— Ani Dasgupta, president of the World Resources Institute, said about the water crisis in Jackson, Mississippi that has left hundreds of thousands without safe drinking water.

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TURNING OUT TWO MILLION CLIMATE VOTERS: On Tuesday, LCV Victory Fund and Climate Power Action launched the $12 million Climate Voters Mobilization program, a strategic, surround-sound digital advertising and direct mail marketing campaign to nearly 2 million voters in congressional battleground states and districts. The program uses data from a sophisticated modeling and message testing development to target voters who supported President Biden in 2020, but are in jeopardy of not casting their ballot for pro-climate Democrats in 2022. This base of voters is uniquely moved by climate and environmental issues and tend to be younger, more female and more racially diverse.

OUR TAKE: LCV Victory Fund  Senior Vice President of Campaigns Pete Maysmith said, “This is the first time in our organization’s 50 year history that we get to campaign on a transformational climate law, so you better believe we are going to do it in the most strategic, powerful way possible. By the time polls open, voters in key states and districts who care about climate but aren’t constantly paying attention to politics are going to understand exactly how the Inflation Reduction Act benefits them, and exactly where their candidates stood on the strongest climate bill in U.S. history.”

SUPPORTING SETH MAGAZINER IN THE RI-02 PRIMARY: LCV Victory Fund announced a $400,000 advertising investment in support of congressional candidate Seth Magaziner on Tuesday. Magaziner, who is running to represent Rhode Island’s 2nd Congressional District and was endorsed by LCV Action Fund in May, currently serves as general treasurer for Rhode Island where he has helped the state become a national leader in clean energy. The ad is already airing on broadcast and cable throughout the Providence, RI media market and on digital streaming TV and will continue for the final two weeks before the September 13 primary. Watch the ad  – titled “Leader” – here.

OUR TAKE: LCV Victory Fund Regional Campaigns Director Eva Estrada said, “We need proven, innovative climate leaders like Seth Magaziner in Congress who will use every tool in the toolbox to advance climate justice, build a clean energy economy, and create jobs. Rhode Island has become a trailblazer for clean energy under Magaziner’s leadership as Treasurer, and we are confident that he will continue to be a strong voice for climate, jobs, and justice in Congress – unlike Republican Allan Fung.”

ENDORSING MICHELLE VALLEJO: LCV Action Fund and Latino Victory Fund announced their endorsements of Michelle Vallejo for election to the U.S. House representing Texas’s 15th Congressional District on Tuesday. Vallejo, a small business owner and descendent of farm workers, immigrants and entrepreneurs, also co-founded two organizations advancing equity and building prosperity in her Texas community. In Congress, she will fight for reversing the impacts of climate change through electrifying public transport, strengthening the EPA, and protecting underrepresented communities from facing the brunt of climate inaction.

OUR TAKE: LCV Action Fund Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Tiernan Sittenfeld said, “Michelle Vallejo will fight for every community in South Texas to have clean air, clean water, and a healthy environment, especially people in frontline communities facing the brunt of corporate polluters. As a small business owner and family of farm workers, immigrants, and entrepreneurs in the Rio Grande Valley, she understands what is at stake. She is committed to protecting our environment, strengthening our democracy, and building a just and equitable clean energy future for all. We are thrilled to support Michelle Vallejo’s campaign to win this competitive election, and we look forward to working with her in Washington as we continue to fight for environmental justice and a democracy that is more accessible to all.”

EJNCP STATEMENT ON PERMITTING ROLLBACK: In response to a leaked congressional permitting proposal with an American Petroleum Institute watermark that would short-circuit public input and restrict environmental review on pipeline and other projects, the Equitable and Just National Climate Platform released a statement condemning the proposal. Signed onto the statement are leaders from 13 environmental justice groups and six national environmental organizations, including the League of Conservation Voters, the Center for American Progress, Earthjustice, Natural Resources Defense Council, Sierra Club, WE ACT for Environmental Justice and the Deep South Center for Environmental Justice. Read the full statement here.

OUR COLLECTIVE TAKE: EJNCP members wrote, “This proposal is a gift to the fossil fuel industry that threatens to undercut a just and equitable pollution free energy transition. We must urgently build out renewable energy, and a thorough environmental review process must be at the center of ambitious renewable energy deployment. Communities must have a voice in federal decision-making in order to repair this country’s legacy of environmental injustice and to create an energy future that works for everyone.”

“We strongly oppose any effort to perpetuate fossil fuel harms and silence community voices. Congress should focus instead on passing the Environmental Justice for All Act, which clarifies how agencies consider and address the cumulative, and often disproportionate, impacts from project development in communities of color and low-income communities. This will ensure projects proceed not just efficiently, but equitably, in the communities where it matters most.”

AUGUST TOP 5: The month of August marks a historic milestone for our nation’s fight for climate and clean energy. By applying pressure through five different strategies, LCV helped pass the Inflation Reduction Act and secure the greatest investments into climate action our nation has ever seen. Across over 30 states, our grassroots activists mobilized and engaged tens of thousands of supporters with hundreds of events throughout our growing Conservation Voter Movement. Through this work, we elected climate champions at every level of government who made sweeping investments into the environment and clean energy jobs. Then, we continued to advocate and hold them accountable, with LCV staff consistently pushing the needle forward on what is possible and calling out decision makers who put polluter profits over people. We did this nationally and by building state and local power to secure an equitable future where communities have access to clean air and water. Read more about LCV’s impact and these five strategies here.

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HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE STATES:

CALIFORNIA TAKES ON CLIMATE CHANGE: The state of California approved a record fleet of bills to cut emissions and tackle the climate crisis. On top of a record $54 billion in climate spending, legislators also voted for new restrictions on oil and gas drilling and to end statewide carbon emissions by 2045. This is a monumental step for the state that has experienced a season of intense heat waves and wildfires. 

ENVIROVOTERS TAKE: Chief Executive Officer of California Environmental Voters Mary Creasman said, “AB 1279 passed because of brave and persistent leadership from climate champions in California who refused to take no for an answer. As we fought for in our Climate Courage Campaign, this bill makes our climate goals more credible by rooting them in the latest science — a-make-or-break threshold to ensure our actions actually save the California we love for our kids. Scientists say we will reach a point of no return by the end of this decade, which makes bigger and bolder action essential to our success.”

CLEAN CARS IN CALIFORNIA: In additional Californian climate news, the state committed to 100% of new car sales being zero-emission vehicles by 2035. 

ENVIROVOTERS TAKE: Political and Organizing Director of the California Environmental Voters Mike Young said, “The transportation sector is one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions in California and nationwide. Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II) codifies and sets key markers for achieving the Governor’s 2020 Executive Order banning the sale of non-electric vehicles by 2035. It is a critically important step towards addressing an enormous source of emissions and can and likely will be adopted by other states around the country just like its predecessor in Advanced Clean Cars I. Transitioning to cleaner vehicles will also have direct public health benefits, and will help reduce air pollution from smog and other particulates.”

COMING UP:

SEPTEMBER 6: Massachusetts Primary Election

SEPTEMBER 8: Rally in Washington, D.C. hosted by StopMVP Coalition and People Vs. Fossil Fuels in opposition to the Mountain Valley Pipeline 

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