What a wild month it's been. Young people across the country have been working for years to pass bold state-level climate policy, and in June, we won in New York! We are also seeing firsthand how powerful the fossil fuel industry is, and we know that the fight ahead will not be easy. Read on to see what our team's been up to and how you can get involved.
The fight in Oregon to pass the Clean Energy Jobs bill (HB 2020) is not over. Young Oregonians are severely threatened by the climate crisis, and we cannot afford to wait for legislation that limits pollution and averts the worst effects of a warming planet. We call on Governor Kate Brown to hold a special session so lawmakers do what we sent them to do: protect our future by passing HB 2020.
Make no mistake: HB 2020 was sent back to committee because the fossil fuel industry made a last-ditch effort to protect their bottom line. Senate Republicans, whose campaigns can receive unlimited funding from corporate interests, left the state to prevent a vote because they knew they would lose. The fact that a handful of Democrats rewarded this behavior by caving to their fossil-fuel industry-funded demands is unacceptable.
Mitigating the climate crisis will require courage, creativity, and perseverance, and we are deeply grateful to our elected leaders, including Governor Kate Brown, who have risen to this challenge. Oregon voters elected a majority of lawmakers who promised to take action on climate change. They have not yet delivered. For this reason, a special session must be convened immediately to pass HB 2020, preserve the integrity of our democratic institutions, and demonstrate Oregon’s leadership on this critical issue.
Young leaders call for Oregon Senate President to stand up to fossil fuel funded Republican minority
As young Oregonians directly threatened by the climate crisis, we are outraged that Senate President Peter Courtney has caved to Republican demands and plans to walk away from the Clean Energy Jobs bill (HB 2020). Young constituents deserve leaders who fight for their interests and do not back down when things get tough. We deserve to know where our elected leaders stand, and who they represent. For this reason, we demand a full Senate floor vote on Clean Energy Jobs this legislative session.
This week, the New York State legislature passed the historic Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, which sets the strongest greenhouse gas emissions reduction standards in the country.
Violette is a freshman studying Environmental Analysis and Policy at Boston University while concurrently earning her MA in Energy and Environment. Violette’s passion for environmental advocacy stems from her experience as a lifelong resident of the Central Valley, CA, America’s agricultural capital. When she is not studying or working, Violette can be found running, cycling, skiing, hiking, or stargazing in her hammock with her black lab, Gus.
Andrew Dickinson is a junior at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst and was a Fellow in the Fall of 2018. He is majoring in Communications with a minor in Environmental Science. He has been environmentally conscious since he was a kid and recently decided that this was the path he needs to go down in order to make the world a better place. He sees Our Climate as a clear first step towards a career in environmental advocacy after graduating. When he isn’t thinking about ways to better our future, you’ll find him scaling a rock wall or shredding the slopes of a ski hill.
Gabriel Bongiorno is a Fellow with Our Climate and a sophomore at Binghamton University.
Claire is part of Our Climate's Fellowship Program. She is a sophomore at Willamette University in Salem, OR.
Earlier this month, students across the country convened at state capitols to demand science-based and equitable climate policy. From Washington to Nebraska to New York, young people marched, connected with advocates from across their state, and collectively met with more than 165 state lawmakers. ThinkProgress and PBS covered the day, along with local and state outlets (we especially love this piece from the Florida Phoenix).
In a show of force, students and young leaders in states across the country (Oregon, Florida, Massachusetts, Nebraska, Illinois, Iowa, and New York) rallied at their state capitals to demand equitable and science-based action on climate change. Students in Washington State will hold a similar event on Thursday.