Weekly Briefing: New Senate Bill Prices Carbon & Pollutants, Supports Coal Communities
June 16, 2021
The drumbeat to price carbon continues as Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (RI) and Brian Schatz (HI) today introduced the Save Our Future Act, comprehensive legislation that dramatically reduces emissions and protects environmental justice and coal communities.
In a statement, CCL Executive Director Mark Reynolds said, “The Save Our Future Act would place an ambitious price on carbon to reduce America's emissions, but it doesn't stop there. This legislation would also address long-standing environmental justice concerns by directly pricing emissions of fossil fuel co-pollutants in frontline communities, and it would invest in coal communities to support them through the transition to a clean energy economy.”
The bill is drawing positive comments from unions and environmental justice organizations.
“Senators Whitehouse and Schatz are leading the difficult but important conversations about how America’s energy transition impacts almost 100,000 individuals working in coal and mining facilities today,” said Utility Workers Union of America President James Slevin.
“It’s past time for polluters to be held accountable for their transgressions against people and planet alike,” said the New York City Environmental Justice Alliance and New York Lawyers for the Public Interest in a joint statement. “Senators Schatz and Whitehouse have introduced a commonsense emissions pricing mechanism that, if ratified, will end the practice of polluting with impunity by the fossil fuel industry and associated harmful processes.”
Learn more about this legislation on the Carbon Pricing Bills in Congress page or watch CCL's Legislative Update on the new legislation.
In other news this week:
Speaking of carbon pricing momentum… In the past two weeks, 10 more House members have cosponsored the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, bringing the total number of cosponsors to 68. With CCL volunteers conducting lobbying meetings this month, we can expect to see more cosponsors in the weeks ahead. Tweet your thanks to the new cosponsors with CCL’s online action tool.
Looking for a job? Citizens’ Climate Education currently has openings for four positions candidates can apply for: Director of Government Affairs, Conservative Outreach Coordinator, Content Marketing Manager, and Government Affairs Coordinator.
Lobbying: CCLers connect with members of Congress online
CCL’s June lobby meetings are in high gear this week. Most of these meetings, if not all, are still occurring online through platforms like Zoom. Members of the Atlanta chapter (shown above) met with Rep. Hank Johnson (lower right), who is an original cosponsor for the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act. Henry Slack (lower left), CCL’s state coordinator for Georgia, said, “Rep. Johnson was very gracious as always.” Paul Friederich (upper left), the CCL liaison for Johnson’s office, said, “I like the flexibility virtual meetings give us. Even though it's not the same excitement of meeting in person, there is a lot to be said for people being able to participate from many locations without the expense of travel.”
CCL volunteers and members of Congress like Rep. Johnson are tweeting about the meetings. Check out his tweet and other meeting posts in our Twitter thread.
See tweets from meetings
Take action this week
If you have a little time: Retweet, like and comment on CCL's statement on Twitter about the Save Our Future Act, the carbon pricing bill just introduced by Sen. Whitehouse and Sen. Schatz.
If you have more time: Watch recordings from last weekend's virtual conference, “The Push for a Price on Carbon.” If you weren’t among the 2,126 people who joined the conference Saturday on Airmeet, you can hear keynote speakers Jerry Taylor and Jasmine Sanders from our opening session or Adele Morris from our closing session. Recordings are also available from our Take Action breakout sessions, our “Who Supports Carbon Pricing?” breakouts, and our deeper dive Sunday workshops.
6/24: Climate Central: Making It Local, Making It Real - Join Karen Florini from Climate Central for a look at resources her organization offers for climate advocates, including Climate Matters, WeatherPower, Sea Level Rise, and Realtime Climate. Join us!
6/24: Big Tent Climate Talks - Join CCL’s monthly series of conversations with people from organizations outside of CCL as we work to build coalitions with others who are doing important work around climate solutions. Join us!
Need training on the basics? Catch our next session of Core Volunteer Training, made for newer volunteers:
6/22 Communicating with Progressives - Learn how to talk with progressives about the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act. Alexis Hermosillo, CCL’s State Level Carbon Pricing Coordinator, leads the training. Learn more and RSVP.
To see other topics and past trainings, visit the Training Topics page of CCL Community.
This week on the CCL blog:
CCL testimony for carbon pricing hearing: Earlier this spring, Alex Brill from American Enterprise Institute testified at a Senate Finance Committee about the benefits of carbon pricing. Senators had a few follow up questions, and CCL was happy to provide answers in written testimony that was submitted to the committee. Read more.