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Congressional climate strategy includes microgrids and climate justice

Last week, Democrats on the US House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis issued a report, “Solving the Climate Crisis, “ which provides an emissions reduction policy framework which seeks to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Here’s a link to a summary article from Vox about the report. 

One of the recommendations in the report is to “Invest in disproportionately exposed communities to cut pollution and advance environmental justice.” This matches Climate Center policy priorities related to climate justice as noted in a recent letter sent by The Climate Center and Partners to the Steyer Committee (here’s a link to a summary article from Microgrid Knowledge).  One of the principles of The Climate Center-backed Community Energy Resilience Act, SB 1314, was the prioritization of state support for low-income and disadvantaged communities.

The new report also spotlights microgrid development as a key resilience strategy, particularly for critical infrastructure — similar to recommendations from The Climate Center’s Community Energy Resilience program and associated media efforts.

Microgrid-related recommendations in the new congressional report include the following:

  • Establishing a new program at the Departments of Health and Human Services to support pre-disaster hospital and health facility resilience projects, including retrofits and maintenance to reduce flood and wildfire risk, harden facilities against extreme weather, and integrate redundant water and power supplies, including microgrids and community renewable energy grids;
  • Directing the Department of Energy to create a grant, technical assistance, and demonstration programs for microgrids, especially in isolated areas and vulnerable communities;
  • Providing technical assistance and funding through the US Department of Agriculture to deploy resilient renewable energy and microgrid systems;
  • Creating a new program within the Department of Transportation to assess and deploy resilient solutions for public transit electrification, including advanced microgrids.

To learn more community energy resilience policy, register here for The Climate Center’s August 5th Community Energy Resilience Policy Summit.

Congressional climate action plan

Congressional Climate Crisis Action Plan would decarbonize U.S., add $8 trillion in benefits by 2050

by Megan Mahajan, Forbes


Highlights

  • The U.S. House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis has released their climate policy report titled Solving the Climate Crisis: The Congressional Action Plan for a Clean Energy Economy and a Healthy, Resilient and Just America 
  • Climate policy firm Energy Innovation modeled a subset of the Select Committee’s recommendations using a simulator and found it will hit net zero carbon dioxide emissions before 2050 and slash net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 88% from 2010 levels by 2050
  • This policy could prevent 62,000 premature deaths annually from pollution, while generating nearly $8 trillion in cumulative monetized health and climate benefits by 2050
  • Under this model, the electricity sector could reach 90% clean electricity by 2035 and 100% clean energy by 2040
  • Electrifying buildings with clean energy can deliver much-needed emissions reductions within that sector
  • 100% zero-emission vehicle sales for light-duty vehicles by 2035 and for heavy-duty vehicles by 2040 would help the transportation sector meet 2050 net-zero targets
  • More than 70% of voters support legislation targeting a 100% clean economy according to new polling

The Climate Center’s Climate-Safe California Platform advocates for a formal California State commitment by 2022 to 80% below 1990 levels of greenhouse gas emissions and net negative emissions by 2030 for a climate-safe future.


Read More: https://www.forbes.com/sites/energyinnovation/2020/06/30/congressional-climate-crisis-action-plan-would-decarbonize-us-add-8-trillion-in-benefits-by-2050/#56af4e331381

House Democrats’ climate plan is ambitious, but is it enough?

On Tuesday House Democrats unveiled a package of more than 120 pieces of legislation that seek to drive a transition to net zero carbon emissions by 2050, and the plan ties climate action to racial justice. Some pundits are saying that the plan shows just how far progressives have pushed the climate conversation. Vox reporter David Roberts called it, “The most detailed and well-thought-out plan for addressing climate change that has ever been a part of US politics.”

The plan is very similar to the Green New Deal, but lacks a ban on fracking and other rapid fossil fuel phase-out measures that will be required to avoid already looming climate catastrophe.

The plan comes just as Ohio University has released a study revealing that the South Pole has been warming at more than three times the global average over the past 30 years. For climate scientists, the alarm bells are ringing on global tippings points that are beginning to unleash potentially irreversible damage.

The 547-page report calls for setting a price on carbon dioxide pollution, eliminating pollution from cars by 2035 and from power plants by 2040, and achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

The roadmap draws on information gathered in more than 100 hearings by Castor’s panel and other House committees. The plan also calls for massive jobs programs, investments in infrastructure, and tax credits to encourage more manufacturing of clean energy components domestically.

The plan is ambitious, and hopefully this agenda will also soon include a rapid phase-out of fossil fuels that is more in line with the current climate reality and the need for net-negative emissions by 2030

California can help by setting our own targets in line with the latest science. Our Climate-Safe California platform outlines these targets and the bold policies needed to meet them. Endorse it today.