WASHINGTON D.C. – Yesterday, the Senate passed the so-called “Fiscal Responsibility Act,” the product of a closed-doors negotiation between President Biden and House Speaker McCarthy.
In reaction to the Senate’s passage, Ozawa Bineshi Albert, Co-Executive Director at the Climate Justice Alliance, a national nonprofit representing 89 rural and urban community-based environmental justice organizations and supporting networks, released this statement:
“Despite our communities’ and allies’ collective efforts, including Senators who pushed for amendments to remove poison pills and ensure a clean debt ceiling bill, Congress took advantage of a bill necessary to avoid a government shutdown– which could impact millions of poor and working class Americans–in order to pass dangerous policies that continue to sacrifice our neighborhoods and the planet and perpetuate environmental injustice.
Fast-tracking the Mountain Valley Pipeline; drastically limiting community input on fossil fuel projects; gutting bedrock environmental protections so that oil and gas pipelines and other energy projects would be completely exempt — this is a dirty deal that we have fought and shut down three times previously thanks to the power of grassroots organizing and the strength of the Environmental Justice Movement.
By allowing these provisions to be proposed and move through the legislative process, President Biden, Senator Schumer (who second top donor is the company behind the Mountain Valley Pipeline), and House Minority Leader Jeffries have invigorated corporated-backed politicians who are already signaling more harmful bills and bills with this win. This is not climate leadership, this is not justice.”
Elizabeth Yeampierre, Executive Director of UPROSE and co-chair of the Climate Justice Alliances, on the passage of the bill said:
“As Environmental Justice communities with both experience and lived history in the struggle against extractive and polluting industries, we won’t stand idly by as both Democrats and Republicans continue to pander to their fossil fuel donors at the expense of our communities.
Members of the Climate Justice Alliance are building a Just Transition away from extractive systems of production, consumption and political oppression, and towards resilient, regenerative and equitable economies. We need politicians to follow the lead of frontline communities who have the solutions to the climate crisis, or get out of the way, like those who introduced and supported amendments to stop the Mountain Valley Pipeline and the gutting of NEPA.
Not only are we ready for the next fight, we continue to lay the foundation for a regenerative economy that does not sacrifice people or the environment as our Congress and corporations are keen to do.”