Weekly Briefing: NY Times Confirms Carbon Pricing Is Advancing
September 29, 2021
Amid major carbon price buzz, register for CCL’s November conference
The prospects for passing a carbon price this year continue to grow, thanks in large part to the advocacy of CCL volunteers. A major story appeared in the New York Times on Friday, where Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, “confirmed that the Senate majority leader had asked him to craft legislation that would put a price on carbon emissions [...] with some kind of rebate or ‘carbon dividend.’”
The New York Times article also quoted CCL’s Steve Valk about our grassroots lobbying efforts: “I can tell you that our volunteers have placed 1,444 calls and emails to Arizona Senate and House offices in the last few months.”
Since July, CCL volunteers have generated more than 65,000 messages asking senators, House members, and the President to support a price on carbon. CCL Senior Director of Government Affairs Ben Pendergrass credits that effort as one of the reasons the Senate Finance Committee is now taking a carbon fee so seriously: “Our folks delivered the right message to the right people at the perfect time.”
Progress to enact a price on carbon is happening because of the persistent work we’ve done throughout the year. What a great time for our community to come together for our November virtual conference!
Registration for the conference — Nov. 13-14 — is free and now open. Our theme is “Grit & Gratitude,” and the conference provides an opportunity to celebrate this year’s accomplishments and prepare for what’s next. Our keynote speaker will be Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, co-founder of the climate initiative The All We Can Save Project, and co-creator of the podcast How to Save a Planet.
In other news this week:
Another cosponsor for H.R. 2307: Rep. Karen Bass (CA-37), former chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, has become the 84th cosponsor of the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act. She joins a flurry of House members who recently signed on to the carbon pricing bill: Representatives James Langevin (RI-02), Brenda Lawrence (MI-14), and Pramila Jayapal (WA-07).
Dr. Hayhoe on Jimmy Kimmel: The topic of climate change was all over late-night TV last Wednesday, and CCL Advisory Board member Dr. Katharine Hayhoe was on Jimmy Kimmel Live talking about our changing climate. Watch the segment on Twitter.
Infrastructure vote set for House: A vote is scheduled Thursday in the House for the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill. The House continues to work on a separate $3.5 trillion budget bill. Both bills and the politics involved in finalizing them are making a splash in the media, so check out our “LTE Topics” resource for guidance on writing letters about this news.
Yale survey on climate change: The Yale Program on Climate Change Communication released its latest survey, which found the percentage of Americans who are worried about climate change is at an all-time high: 70%. And for the first time, a majority of Americans, 55%, say that people in the U.S. are being harmed right now by global warming.
Take action this week
If you have a little time: Read and share this op-ed in The Hill by Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-CA-24) urging Congress to put a price on carbon. After referencing Dr. Katharine Hayhoe and the latest IPCC report, Carbajal writes, “Congress is deliberating on the reconciliation proposal right now. [...] Reconciliation presents an opportunity to enact a carbon fee and dividend, which can help us raise revenue, reduce carbon emissions, and curb climate change.” Additionally, check out and share Carbajal’s tweet about his op-ed.
Featured Lever This Week
Grasstops: Endorsements from KY faith leaders
CCL volunteer Christine Missik from Danville, Kentucky, organized an effort to get endorsements for a carbon price from Kentucky’s faith leaders. Over 100 clergy members from multiple denominations signed a letter endorsing a price on carbon as an effective way to care for God’s creation.
“As stewards of God’s creation, we bear a moral and spiritual responsibility to prevent a worsening climate crisis. We ask our members of Congress to act decisively: Enact a carbon pricing policy,” the letter reads.
Christine shares more about what inspired her. “After an ‘Economists’ Statement’ came out in Indiana, we were inspired to reach out to economists in Kentucky, asking them to sign a statement in favor of carbon fee and dividend. This was a success,” she writes. “CCLers around the state reached out to faith leaders they knew in order to [get] signatures before we reached out to leaders who we didn’t know. In both cases we were able to show significant support from grasstops.”
In other grasstops news, the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act has reached a milestone of 3,000 prominent endorsements. This broad support bolsters the discussions happening in Congress about including a carbon price in the budget. Thank you to our volunteers for all of their hard work!
9/30: Social Media Actions to Support Reconciliation - Join CCL's Marketing Manager Ashley Hunt Martorano for training that will teach volunteers to use social media strategically. Join us!
10/7: Understanding State Severance Fees - CCL State Level Carbon Pricing Coordinator Alexis Hermosillo and CCL's legislative team are offering training that will examine the connection between severance fees and carbon pricing. This training will help attendees understand current trends and future steps for action. Join us!
Need training on the basics? Catch our next session of Core Volunteer Training, made for newer volunteers:
10/5: Engaging With CCL Community - This training is designed to help volunteers learn how to use CCL's main websites to get up to speed. This training will also help volunteers identify opportunities for participation that match their talents and interests. Join us!
To see other topics and past trainings, visit the Training Topics page of CCL Community.
This week on the CCL blog:
Citizens’ Climate Radio: In this episode of Citizens’ Climate Radio, Hari Venkatachalam reveals how extreme weather, which affects everyone, disproportionally impacts LGBTQ homeless youth. Hari is an active member of Sadhana: A Coalition of Progressive Hindus, and his activism focuses on environmental justice, LGBTQ+ issues, and public health. Read the show notes and listen to the episode here.
Climate Avengers, assemble! CCL Research Coordinator Dana Nuccitelli summarizes new assessments made by Resources for the Future and Rhodium Group about climate policies under consideration in the budget package, and he motivates climate advocates to act. Read more.
IPCC report spurs climate advocates onward: CCL Research Coordinator Rick Knight breaks down the latest IPCC report, and what this means for climate advocacy in the future. Read more.