Our fight to transition to a pollution-free, clean energy economy received a major boost today when philanthropist and UN Special Envoy for Climate Ambitions and Solutions Mike Bloomberg committed an additional $500 million to move the U.S. beyond carbon. This is the kind of bold climate leadership that we need, and Earthjustice is proud to be working with Bloomberg Philanthropies to champion clean energy solutions.
With the support of the Beyond Carbon campaign, Earthjustice has made major progress towards an equitable clean energy future. Together with our partners, we are working to power our entire economy with clean energy, clean up coal’s toxic legacy, and move away from fossil fuels. All of this work is grounded in Earthjustice’s commitment to justice and equity.
Here are just a few examples of the progress that the Beyond Carbon campaign has supported since its launch in 2019.
- Moving away from coal and methane gas: Earthjustice is working in state regulatory commissions in 20 states to retire dirty coal plants, block and phase out methane gas, and level the playing field for clean energy. In July, we reached a settlement that put Michigan on track to end the burning of coal for electricity in less than a decade. In August, we won a long fight against a harmful coal-to-diesel refinery in Indiana when its permit expired. We’ve also had tremendous success blocking new gas plants in New York, and we are challenging more across the Midwest, Appalachia, and Puerto Rico.
- Removing barriers to clean energy: Earthjustice is working at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and in key states to clear market barriers for clean energy and prevent market manipulation and discriminatory pricing structures that favor fossil fuels. We recently won a big ruling in the D.C. Circuit which found that FERC unlawfully approved the Southeast Energy Exchange Market, which disadvantaged independent power producers and enabled large monopoly utilities to prop up their own coal and gas resources.
- Accelerating transmission infrastructure: Earthjustice is leading efforts to address regulatory hurdles to build transmission and other clean energy infrastructure quickly, while preventing harm to impacted communities. With our partners, we developed a roadmap with clear, actionable steps for policymakers to ensure our transmission system can meet the growing demand for clean energy. Earthjustice and our allies successfully pushed FERC to strengthen interconnection reforms to speed the approval process for new energy projects, and our work continues as we seek reforms to transmission planning, siting and development.
- Cutting pollution from power plants: Earthjustice has been pressing EPA to address multiple pollutants from coal- and gas-fired power plants that are harming air and water quality, public health, and the climate. We’re fighting for stronger protections against ozone pollution, mercury and air toxics, particulate matter, and carbon pollution from power plants.
- Cleaning up toxic coal ash: After years of Earthjustice litigation and advocacy, EPA proposed a new coal ash rule that will extend federal monitoring, closure, and cleanup requirements to hundreds of previously excluded older landfills, legacy ponds, and fill sites. EPA is also cracking down on coal ash contamination and taking steps to stop coal plants from dumping coal ash in unlined ponds.
- Getting fossil fuels out of buildings and improving energy efficiency: We’ve secured wins in New York and Washington, D.C. to electrify new buildings, and we successfully pushed California to end incentives for gas appliances. Since the Biden administration took office, we’ve made steady progress improving federal efficiency standards, including stronger standards for dishwashers, light bulbs, and manufactured homes.
We’re in a critical moment in the fight against climate change and for a livable future for all. From extreme heat and raging wildfires to record-breaking hurricanes, climate disasters are destroying lives, homes, and livelihoods. The window of time left to save our future is narrowing fast. At Earthjustice, we are committed to rising to the challenge.
Beyond Carbon will help us accelerate progress and replicate our victories in communities around the country. Together, we can advance equitable climate solutions that match the scale of the crisis and fully benefit frontline communities. We’re on our way toward building a just and healthy future for the planet and all its people.