Join us.

We’re working to create a just society and preserve a healthy environment for future generations. Donate today to help.

Donate

Blog

Showing 119 results

Daniel Farber | August 19, 2022

Making Fossil Fuels Pay for Their Damage

Production and combustion of fossil fuels impose enormous costs on society, which the industry doesn't pay for. I want to talk about some options for using the tax system to change that.

Alexandra Rogan, James Goodwin | August 18, 2022

With the Inflation Reduction Act, the Clean Energy Revolution Will be Subsidized

With the signature of President Joe Biden, the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) now marks the most significant climate policy action the United States has ever taken. The defining feature of this law is that it seeks to wring carbon dioxide emissions out of the U.S. economy by relying heavily on policy "carrots," like subsidies, instead of policy "sticks," such as regulating the fossil fuel industry or attempting to capture the external costs of greenhouse gas emissions through carbon pricing.

Alexandra Rogan, James Goodwin | August 18, 2022

The Inflation Reduction Act’s Harmful Implications for Marginalized Communities

The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) will subsidize our nation's clean energy revolution and have a positive impact on climate-driven economics, as noted in Part I of this series. That said, the IRA isn't flawless. Notably, it includes several subsidies for fossil fuels, which will be counterproductive as our nation works toward its climate goals. Worse still, not all "carrots" for clean energy technologies are good, and the IRA includes a potentially bad one. Specifically, the IRA risks subsidizing the clean energy transition through perpetuating environmental injustice in how we obtain and use energy to fuel our economy.

Sophie Loeb | August 4, 2022

Duke Energy Carbon Plan Hearing: Authentic Community Engagement Lacking

On July 27, I had the privilege of testifying at the North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC) public hearing regarding the Duke Energy Carbon Plan. The Asheville hearing was one of six forums designated for public witness testimony on the proposed decarbonization plan. In 2019, North Carolina joined 34 other states investing in solar, wind, and other renewable resources when it passed its Clean Energy Power Plan, and, in 2021, when it passed House Bill 951, which commits to a 70 percent carbon reduction by 2030 and carbon neutrality by 2050. When Duke Energy, a major corporation with outsized influence over the state’s decarbonization plan, submitted its proposal to meet those goals, it failed to account for affordability and equity.

Hannah Klaus | August 3, 2022

Environmental Justice for All Act Would Address Generations of Environmental Racism

Last week, the Center for Progressive Reform joined 90 organizations in expressing strong support for the Environmental Justice for All Act in a letter as the bill went before the House Committee on Natural Resources for markup. The coalition, led by Coming Clean, a collaborative of environmental health and environmental justice experts, and the Environmental Justice Health Alliance for Chemical Policy Reform, urged committee members to advance this important legislation to the House floor. The bill, introduced by Reps. Raúl M. Grijalva of Arizona and Donald McEachin of Virginia, is the most significant effort by the federal government to address generations of environmental racism.

James Goodwin | July 27, 2022

Op-Ed: Manchin and the Supreme Court Told Biden to Modernize Regulatory Review — Will He Listen?

The Biden administration’s path forward on climate change -- as the widely deployed metaphor goes -- has become more difficult with the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision in West Virginia vs. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). If the Biden administration is to successfully navigate that path -- and it must if we are to avert the worst consequences of the climate crisis -- the president will need to abandon the “compass” that his predecessors have relied on for decades to guide their policy agenda: Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review.

Thomas McGarity, Wendy Wagner | July 25, 2022

Do Not Blame Us

Law professors dream of the day when the U.S. Supreme Court will rely on one of their publications for a proposition that is crucial to the outcome of an important case. What better validation of all the blood, sweat, and tears that were poured into the publication? What an existential high to know that they have finally arrived at the pinnacle. We experienced none of those emotions when reading Chief Justice John Roberts' opinion in West Virginia v. EPA. The citations to our work were both minor and innocuous, so that fact helps allay any sense of accomplishment. But equally significant, the Court's analysis bears little relationship to our own understanding of Section 111(a) of the Clean Air Act.

Alexandra Rogan | July 15, 2022

Apparent Defeat of Clean Energy Legislation in Congress Is a Staggering Loss for Our Country and the Climate

Without Senator Joe Manchin's (D-WV) support, a key energy bill will fail to move forward in the U.S. Senate. The bill's provisions would have taken needed steps toward limiting the global average temperature change to 1.5 degree Celcius, the goal of the Paris Climate Agreement, and transitioning our nation to a clean energy economy.

Hannah Klaus | July 13, 2022

North Carolina Climate Plan Must Include Clean, Affordable Energy for Underserved Residents

Duke Energy, a major corporation with near-monopoly control over North Carolina’s electric grid, has outsized influence over the state’s decarbonization plan, which is now under review. The state legislature ordered the utility commission to make a 70 percent reduction in carbon emissions by 2030 and to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. Duke Energy has submitted a plan to the commission to meet those goals, but the plan fails to take affordability and equity into full account. What’s worse: Low-wealth people aren’t required -- or, in many cases, even able -- to participate in the planning process. They’re shut out.