CCL Newsletter: With Carbon Pricing Still In Play, Volunteers Gather For CCL’s Fall Conference
November 17, 2021
With carbon pricing still under consideration in the Senate version of the Build Back Better Act, Citizens’ Climate Lobby volunteers gathered for a virtual conference last weekend. The conference kicked off a week of lobbying congressional offices to include a price on carbon in the reconciliation bill that House and Senate leaders hope to pass in the weeks ahead.
CCL volunteers have scheduled 268 Senate and House meetings this week. During the conference, CCL VP for Government Affairs Dr. Danny Richter laid out the organization’s legislative strategy and where things stand with the reconciliation process. Noting Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse’s recent statement that carbon pricing has 49 of the 50 Senate votes needed for passage, Danny told volunteers, “While Sen. Whitehouse’s vote count is very encouraging, politicians have been known to get weak knees from time to time. In the Senate, your job is to be a knee brace for those politicians to strengthen the resolve of Senate Democrats. Let them know their constituents still support this and want to see it included in the final package.”
The conference, Grit and Gratitude, was viewed by 1,843 attendees online and featured keynote speaker Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, marine biologist, writer and co-creator of the climate initiative The All We Can Save Project. Dr. Johnson shared the concept of a Blue New Deal, a plan that recognizes that we must include the ocean as a key solution to the climate crisis. She also offered advice on how CCL can build better relationships with the climate justice movement. You can watch her conversation with CCL President Madeleine Para on CCL Community.
Participants at the conference also heard from Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, Chief Scientist for the Nature Conservancy and author of “Saving Us.” She had just returned from the UN climate conference, COP26, in Glasgow, Scotland, and spoke about the agreement that was reached during CCL’s conference. “Never before has the UNFCC’s agreement specifically called out fossil fuels, and this one does. It calls for the elimination of subsidies for fossil fuels, which are astronomical.”
Plenaries and workshops from the conference can be viewed on CCL’s YouTube channel.
Watch Conference Sessions!
In other news this week:
- CCI at COP26: Citizens’ Climate International had a major presence at the COP26 UN climate meeting in Glasgow, with 23 team members accredited to attend the conference. During CCL’s conference on Saturday, CCI Executive Director Joe Robertson and CCL Southeast Regional Coordinator Solemi Hernandez gave an update on the UN conference just as delegates were signing off on the COP26 agreement. Check out CCI’s report about COP26 and photos from the conference. Joe will give a presentation about COP26 in a Citizens’ Climate University session on Dec. 2.
- Where does the reconciliation bill stand? A House vote may soon take place on the Build Back Better Act, legislation moving through the budget reconciliation process that only requires a simple majority for passage in the Senate. Among other things, the bill contains sweeping measures to address climate change. House leaders are waiting for a report from the Congressional Budget Office, expected later this week, before voting on the measure. One complication is that the CBO score may reveal a gap between spending and revenue that would have to be addressed.
- Meanwhile, in the Senate... Once the House passes its version of the Build Back Better Act, attention turns to the Senate, where negotiations are expected to take several weeks. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said he hopes to deliver the bill before Christmas. Although the House version does not contain a price on carbon, the policy is still under consideration in the Senate. Should the Senate bill include carbon pricing, the House is expected to pass the Senate version.
Take action this week
If you have a little time: Check out this tweet from Sen. Whitehouse
In a recent tweet, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) makes the case that a carbon price with a border carbon adjustment is the key for cutting emissions and making sure that countries like Russia and China do the same. Reply, retweet and like his tweet here.
If you have more time: Join a phone or text banking session
This is a crucial time to reach out to other climate-concerned Americans and urge them to contact Congress about a carbon price. One of the most effective ways to do this is through CCL’s weekly phone banking and text banking. Check out this CCL Community page to find an upcoming session that works for you.
Featured Lever This Week
Media: Young Republicans tout solutions
Within the last week, two newspapers published guest columns written by young Republicans in Indiana, endorsing sensible market-based solutions to climate change.
Chris Elmore of Indiana wrote in the Hamilton County Reporter that, as a young Republican concerned with climate change’s impact on agriculture, he’s thankful that Senators Mike Braun and Todd Young are representing the state’s best interests.
Chris finds particular promise in the Growing Climate Solutions Act, a bill CCL has supported as a “secondary ask” in lobby meetings. Chris says this legislation “would leverage the power of the free market to incentivize farmers and foresters nationwide to incorporate climate-friendly agriculture practices into their operations.”
Josh Taulbee, the chair of the Delaware County Young Republicans in Indiana, published an op-ed in The Star Press. He, too, makes a case in support of the Growing Climate Solutions Act and its success.
“As chair of the Delaware County Young Republicans, I am exceedingly grateful to both of Indiana’s senators for their support of the market-based Growing Climate Solutions Act. I am also hopeful that Representative Greg Pence will recognize what a smart, pro-growth solution this bill is and throw his support behind it in the House,” Josh writes.
Read the Op-Ed!
Citizens’ Climate is going big on Giving Tuesday
2021 has been a big year for climate, and Citizens’ Climate has played an important role. But we’re not across the finish line yet. To keep this momentum going, we need to raise $1.5 million by December 31st,including $300,000 on Giving Tuesday (Nov. 30th) alone.
Senate Democrats are negotiating the largest potential climate package in U.S. history through the budget reconciliation process. Citizens’ Climate has pulled out all the stops to meet this moment with full force, and the policy we have long advocated — carbon fee and dividend — has become part of these negotiations. The inclusion of a price on carbon will ensure we achieve 50% emissions reductions by 2030 and avoid the most devastating consequences of climate change. But only if it gets passed.
Donate to CCL!
Meeting our fundraising goal is the key to continue deploying the effective grassroots advocacy tools that have gotten us this far. Can we count on you to pitch in?
Your tax-deductible donation to 501(c)(3) Citizens’ Climate Education will help grow, empower, and mobilize more than 210,000+ climate-concerned citizens to advance meaningful climate legislation. This Giving Tuesday, support the grassroots climate movement that just won't stop.
P.S. You can also give early! If you give now, we’ll count your donation count toward our year-end goal. Thank you!
Note: Citizens’ Climate Education (CCE) is the 501(c)(3) tax-exempt sister organization to Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL). Donations made to CCE are tax deductible within the guidelines of U.S. law.
11/18: First Time Lobbying Experiences Open Mic Night — This open mic is an opportunity for first time lobbyists to share their stories and reflections from meeting with their members of Congress. Join us!
Trainings scheduled for Thursday, 11/25, have been canceled for Thanksgiving
Need training on the basics? Catch our next session of Core Volunteer Training, made for newer volunteers:
11/23: Grassroots Outreach Basics — Join Dave Cain, CCL Presenters & Schedulers Action Team Leader, for a training on grassroots outreach geared at highlighting the best practices for both tabling and presentations. Join us!
To see other topics and past trainings, visit the Training Topics page of CCL Community.
This week on the CCL blog:
It’s fourth and goal: CCL’s Research Team shows that a carbon price is the policy determining whether or not America will reach the President’s emissions goal. Read more.
Climate advocates gather: With carbon pricing still under consideration in the Senate, Citizens’ Climate Lobby volunteers gathered for a successful virtual conference. Read more.
ICYMI — It was Infrastructure Week: On Monday, President Biden signed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The legislation contains two climate-related provisions that were included with CCL’s help. Read more.