Investing in Climate Action for Jobs, Health, and Equity

A seven-part webinar series
November 2021 – July 2022

Solar Panel Installation

The head of the United Nations called the UN’s latest IPCC report a “code red” warning for humanity. His message: act on climate change now or pay the price for years to come. In the midst of record-breaking fires, drought, floods, and extreme heat, it is clear that massive investments will be required to ensure a climate-safe future for California. Creating a prosperous, zero-carbon economy for the state presents enormous opportunities, including economic and job benefits, community benefits through creating more equity and resilience and improving health outcomes, and through protecting our agricultural industry and restoring wildlands. This series will bring together diverse experts and policymakers to discuss how much we need to invest, what the areas are for priority for investment, and what returns can we expect.

Webinar Recordings

Webinar #1: The Human and Economic Costs of Climate Inaction

Presenters: Chris Busch, Energy Innovation; Senator Lena A. Gonzalez; and Ibrahim AlHusseini, FullCycle

November 18, 2021 

Achieving a climate-safe future for California will require massive investments, both public and private, in all sectors of the economy. But people across the state are already paying a heavy price for our tepid approach to the climate crisis today. This webinar will take a deep dive into the cost of “business as usual,” both in terms of lost economic opportunity, and in terms of the tangible costs our society must bear in the form of healthcare costs, fire protection, and the other impacts of the climate crisis.

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Webinar #2: Maximizing Benefits From Climate Investments

Presenters: Irena Asmundson, California Policy Research Initiative; Dr. Manuel Pastor, University of California; Dr. Daniel Kammen, University of Southern California, Berkeley; Dan Adler, California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development; and Jan Pepper, Peninsula Clean Energy

December 16, 2021 

Hear from policymakers, economists, and business leaders as they discuss the levels of investment needed to accelerate climate action in California. This webinar will explore the routes to achieving more ambitious climate goals and outline the economic and health benefits of investing in bold, equitable climate solutions.

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Webinar #3: Investing in Sustainable Mobility

Presenters: Adrian Martinez, Earthjustice; Dr. Daniel Sperling, California Air Resources Board; Hasan Ikhrata, San Diego Association of Governments; Assemblymember Laura Friedman; and Minda Berbeco, PhD, Bay Area Air Quality Management District. 

January 26, 2022

California’s transportation system is fossil-fueled and automobile-dependent. What sort of investments are needed to create a 21st-century transportation system that can provide equitable access to work and play, while drastically reducing climate pollution from cars, trucks, and buses? It will not be enough to simply invest in more electric vehicle chargers.

This webinar will explore a more comprehensive approach to mobility that provides a range of sustainable transportation options for individuals, commuters, and freight.

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Webinar #4: Investing in Clean Community Energy Resilience

Presenters: Ali Chehrehsaz, TerraVerde Energy; Destiny Rodriguez, The Climate Center; Jaime Alonso, Grid Alternatives, Inland Empire; and Saharnaz Mirzazad, California Strategic Growth Council

March 23, 2022

This webinar addresses the challenges of securing clean, resilient, and reliable energy for California communities. Panelists discussed both current state programs for funding community energy resilience, as well as how to secure the additional investments required to ensure that all Californians can keep the power on during extreme weather events without increasing reliance on diesel generators. Attendees learned about public and private funding opportunities for communities interested in enhancing energy resilience with clean energy.

This webinar featured live Spanish translation by Lingüística Interpreting & Translation.

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Webinar #5: Investing in Workers for a World Beyond Fossil Fuels

Presenters: Norman Rogers, United Steelworkers, Local 675; Dr. Robert Pollin, Political Economy Research Institute (PERI) at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst; Veronica Wilson, Labor Network for Sustainability

April 27, 2022

As we move toward a cleaner and more equitable future, we need to ensure that workers who make a living extracting and refining oil and gas, and maintaining the aging fuel and transportation infrastructure, are able to continue to support their families and communities. We will hear from labor leaders and economists about what investments are needed to protect workers as we phase out fracking and oil extraction in California.

This webinar featured live Spanish translation by Lingüística Interpreting & Translation.

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Webinar #6: Investing in Building Electrification for a Climate-Safe Future

Presenters: Senator Josh Becker; Zoe Elizabeth, Silicon Valley Clean Energy; Laura Gromis, US Green Building Council Central California 

June 8, 2022

Today, roughly 25 percent of California’s greenhouse gas emissions come from commercial and residential buildings. Even as cities begin to transition to all-electric buildings — and some cities are going further by banning natural gas in new construction — addressing the climate crisis will require accelerating the shift away from fossil fuels. This webinar will focus on the investments necessary to quickly and equitably decarbonize residential and commercial buildings in California.

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Webinar #7: Investing in Farmers for Nature-based Carbon Sequestration

Presenters: Albert Straus, Straus Family Creamery; Baani Behniwal, The Climate Center; Bruce Rominger, Rominger Brothers Farms; Emilie Winfield, North Coast Soil Hub; Senator Josh Becker; Patricia Hickey, Carbon Cycle Institute

July 28, 2022

Farmers and ranchers can and should be a big part of the solution to the climate crisis. Climate-smart agricultural practices can sequester significant amounts of carbon while also improving soil health, increasing water retention in the soil, and making the land more drought-resilient and productive. On this webinar, policymakers, conservationists, and farmers discuss the transition towards more resilient farming and ranching practices and what investments are needed to scale climate-smart agricultural practices in a way that supports the growers of our food.

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