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CPR Climate Justice Initiative: Charting a National Path Forward through the California Example

Alice Kaswan, Minor Sinclair | April 22, 2021

Project will assess the state’s progress on climate justice and drive policy change on the state and national levels

Commitments to ensure an equitable clean energy transition are gaining traction, with some states dedicating a portion of clean energy funding to historically marginalized communities and the Biden-Harris administration proposing to dedicate 40 percent of federal climate funds to achieving climate justice. These commitments are essential to realizing an energy transition for communities that would otherwise be left further behind and can help alleviate longstanding inequities.

As these initiatives take shape, CPR is tapping the expertise of our climate and environmental justice scholars and our body of work on climate justice. Over the next two years, we’ll dig into the California example, researching the state’s track record in implementing climate justice programs. We’ll use our findings to help drive proactive national and state policies and governance structures, with the aim of making the transformational goals of climate justice advocates a reality. Our research will help advocates and policymakers answer key questions, including:

  • Who should decide what to fund?
  • On what basis?
  • With what degree of engagement by the communities themselves?

Scholars

Alice Kaswan, Professor of Law at the University of San Francisco School of Law, has conducted initial research into California climate policies and helped conceive this project.

Alejandro Camacho, Professor of Law and Director, Center for Land, Environmental, and Natural Resources at University of California, Irvine School of Law, is an expert on institutional design, considering optimal allocations of authority within administrative agencies.

Robert Glicksman, Professor of Law at George Washington University School of Law, is an expert on institutional design.

Carmen Gonzalez, Morris I. Leibman Professor of Law at Loyola University Chicago School of Law, is an expert on international human rights law and the environment.

Uma Outka, Professor of Law at the University of Kansas School of Law, is an expert on energy law and environmental justice.

Staff

Beginning July 12, 2021, Climate Justice Policy Analyst Catalina Gonzalez will work with our scholars and support this project.

CPR thanks the ClimateWorks Foundation and the Rowboat Foundation for their support for this project.