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by Sarah Lutz, climate campaigner

Nine conservative Democrats have issued an ultimatum to Speaker Nancy Pelosi: pass the Senate’s anemic bipartisan infrastructure bill before proceeding to the truly ambitious $3.5 trillion reconciliation package.

This is certainly a lot of legislative jargon, and in recent weeks the back-and-forth on infrastructure has become dizzyingly complex. So to recap: Before the Senate broke for recess this August, it passed a bipartisan $1 trillion infrastructure bill that progressives generally panned as too small and too friendly to fossil fuels. It also passed a Democrat-only budget resolution clearing the path for a $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill covering clean energy, healthcare…


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by Donna Chavis, senior climate campaigner

The 30th anniversary of the Environmental Justice Summit traces its roots to North Carolina, the unexpected home of environmental justice and the place the term “environmental racism” was coined. As the state grapples with its lengthy history of racial exploitation it must recognize the ways the energy sector has scarred communities through fossil fuels and natural gas. To truly further environmental justice, North Carolina must divest from pervasive fossil fuel extraction and move toward a 100% renewable energy grid.

In 2020 North Carolina officials moved toward joining the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). Established in 2005, the initiative is a…


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by Sarah Lutz, climate campaigner

A few weeks ago, ExxonMobil lobbyists were caught on tape bragging about their plans to undermine climate policy in coming infrastructure legislation. The strategy seems to already be paying dividends. Look no further than Senator Joe Manchin’s Energy Infrastructure Act of 2021. This bill has Exxon’s fingerprints all over it.

The legislation proposes to make $95 billion in infrastructure investments mainly concentrated in the energy sector. But a close look at exactly where the money is going to go reveals an undeniable bet on dirty energy from the 20th century over clean energy from the 21st. In fact, the bill…


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by Katie Chicojay-Moore, Oceans and Vessels Fellow

Air pollution from large container ports has been a historically neglected environmental justice issue. Near-port communities tend to be communities of color, low-income, or otherwise disadvantaged and are disproportionately exposed to pollutants. While there have been significant efforts to reduce emissions from the transportation sector, efforts to reduce emissions at ports have been slow and far behind other industries. However, as the harms of environmental injustices are increasingly recognized, port emissions have received heightened focus.

Port operations release high amounts of climate change-causing greenhouse gases (GHGs), as well as particulate matter (PM) and nitrogen oxides (NOx), which are known to…


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by Lukas Ross, climate and energy program manager

One of the biggest presents Trump ever sent to Big Oil was hidden on page 157 of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, the GOP tax bill passed at the end of 2017. Practically unnoticed at the time, the Biden administration has a new plan to close this loophole and raise $84.7 billion from the biggest of the Big Oil companies over the next decade.

Separate from this sum is an additional $36.5 billion the Biden administration wants to raise from repealing fossil fuel tax breaks. These are the special carve outs for oil, gas and coal that allow the…


by Luisa Abbott Galvao, international policy campaigner

The U.S. government has spent more than $44 billion on fossil fuel projects overseas over the last decade. From fracking projects in Argentina to liquified natural gas development in Mozambique, this finance has not only resulted in pollution and environmental degradation, but displacement, violent conflict and human rights abuses. But much harder to measure are the hidden ways U.S. tax dollars entrench coal, oil and gas overseas through the international financial institutions (IFIs) in which the U.S. participates.

The tide would appear to be turning: soon after taking office this year, President Biden…


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by Luisa Abbott Galvao, international policy campaigner

The U.S. government has spent more than $44 billion on fossil fuel projects overseas over the last decade. From fracking projects in Argentina to liquified natural gas development in Mozambique, this finance has not only resulted in pollution and environmental degradation, but displacement, violent conflict and human rights abuses. But much harder to measure are the hidden ways U.S. tax dollars entrench coal, oil and gas overseas through the international financial institutions (IFIs) in which the U.S. participates.

The tide would appear to be turning: soon after taking office this year, President Biden issued an Executive Order promoting an end…


by Sarah Lutz, climate campaigner

The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is the most important federal policy you have never heard of. It is also undoubtedly the most broken. For 15 years, it has forced dirty corn ethanol into the nation’s fuel supply.

Now, the Biden Administration is contemplating using this broken mandate to subsidize some of our dirtiest electricity sources — woody biomass, factory farm gas, and landfill gas. The plan? Declare that electric vehicles (EVs) charged with these false solutions are actually being powered by renewable fuel.

Special interests, including factory farmers, are lobbying hard to implement this change…


Image via creative commons.

by Sarah Lutz, climate campaigner

The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is the most important federal policy you have never heard of. It is also undoubtedly the most broken. For 15 years, it has forced dirty corn ethanol into the nation’s fuel supply.

Now, the Biden Administration is contemplating using this broken mandate to subsidize some of our dirtiest electricity sources — woody biomass, factory farm gas, and landfill gas. The plan? Declare that electric vehicles (EVs) charged with these false solutions are actually being powered by renewable fuel.

Special interests, including factory farmers, are lobbying hard to implement this change quickly. But President Biden’s new…


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by Sarah Lutz, climate campaigner

In 2012, then President Obama alarmed climate activists during his State of the Union by saying,

“The development of natural gas will create jobs and power trucks and factories that are cleaner and cheaper, proving that we don’t have to choose between our environment and our economy.”

A few minutes later, the President implored Congress to pass a Clean Energy Standard. The two issues — natural gas and Clean Energy Standards — have been deeply connected since the inception of the term. …

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