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Washington, D.C. – Tonight, thanks to countless hours, days, weeks, and months of organizing against Manchin’s dirty side deal, the power of the people has won for the third time! We applaud the Senators who stood with those most impacted by the climate crisis rather than supporting a dirty deal struck behind closed doors in Manchin’s most recent attempt to attach it to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) this evening.
This is an Environmental Justice movement victory! With a vote of 47 No’s as of this writing, the 60 votes needed to move it forward has been defeated. The tireless organizing of frontline communities; strategic campaigns waged by the environmental justice movement and allies; and round the clock work with reasonable legislators, has again beaten back this dirty deal that would have stripped away communities rights and the foundational protections afforded communities under the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) and other bedrock protections like the Clean Water Act, that ensure a pathway for community input and recourse against toxic and polluting industries.
“Those who we have elected to office must understand how hard we had to fight for this victory, we are literally fighting for our lives. I look forward now to spending time building and creating real community solutions to the climate crisis that are grounded in environmental justice rather than fighting against bad policies, which we will continue to do. We must continue ensuring Manchin’s fossil fuel handout is dead for good.” said Maria Lopez-Nuñez, Deputy Director of Advocacy and Organizing at Ironbound Community Corporation, Member of the WHEJAC, and CJA board member.
“Once again, Black, Brown, Indigenous, and poor white communities stood up united against the fossil industry. And we won! Manchin’s dirty deal would have been a disaster for our people and the climate. But, thanks to tireless efforts from Environmental Justice advocates and frontline communities all over the nation, we have ensured that this bill will not be included in the NDAA. Our communities will continue to fight against this zombie bill and any other threats from fossil fuels and false solutions. We thank the courageous legislators that stood with communities that have been historically left behind in the political process. We are ready to work with our elected officials to create a justice and equity centered framework for Just Transition to a renewable energy grid free of fossil fuels.” said Juan Jhong-Chung, Climate Justice Director at the Michigan Environmental Justice Coalition and Co-Chair of CJA’s Policy work group.
“Once again, frontline communities and congressional allies have shown Manchin and Schumer that we will not allow shady back door deals to sacrifice our land and water. It is disappointing to see the Democratic senators who are willing to reduce and restrict the engagement and consultation process, which is a foundation of the government-to-government relationship with Tribal Nations. Any senator willing to vote for the dirty deal does not respect Tribal sovereignty.” said Jordan Harmon, Policy Analyst and Legislative Advocate at Indigenous Environmental Network.
“Make no mistake this is a victory for the frontlines. Frontline environmental justice leaders made it clear again and again Manchin’s dirty energy deal would harm communities. From Appalachia to the Gulf, community members organized and pushed our Congressmembers to stand for environmental justice. This is the third time we have shut down Manchin’s dirty deal. Democratic leadership should listen to the constituents they represent and end this game toying with life and death for communities. Let this be the end of Manchin’s dirty deal.” said Adrien Salazar, Policy Director of Grassroots Global Justice Alliance.
Earlier this week, when we learned the dirty deal would be brought to a vote, CJA members joined environmental justice, Indigenous organizations, and allies across the nation making calls, sending emails and visiting with their Senators to make their position clear: this deal is no good for any of us.
“This is the kind of Democratic leadership we direly need and welcome. We look forward to working with Congress in developing a positive vision of permitting reform, informed by frontline communities experience and expertise.” said Marion Gee, Co-Executive Director of Climate Justice Alliance.