Contact: Olivia@climatejusticealliance.org 301-613-4767
Last month, Congress passed the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), and even though the bill included some beneficial provisions, it most definitely was not the kind of legislation we asked for. By allocating billions to unproven geoengineering projects, nuclear energy, “green” hydrogen, and carbon markets, and by handcuffing investments for clean energy to new fossil fuel projects, the authors and cheerleaders of the IRA used the lives and well-being of our communities as bargaining chips to be sacrificed.
What’s worse, as part of the backroom negotiations around the IRA and in return for Manchin’s support, the West Virginian Senator demanded the introduction of a separate piece of legislation that would fast-track permit approvals for new fossil fuel projects. It would also gut the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), which is essentially an attack on communities’ rights to protect themselves from polluting industries. Democratic Congressional Leadership might try to attach this harmful legislation to a must-pass government spending bill very soon. This is a mistake; we must not enable Manchin to continue holding the public hostage to his fossil fuel backed pet projects that further dismantle everyday peoples’ rights to protect themselves.
We cannot allow a lone wolf Senator beholden to the dirty energy establishment to use our communities as sacrifice zones, all in an effort to line the coffers of a dying and outdated industry.
We call on allies, environmentalists, social justice activists and all those who believe that every human being has a right to a healthy and just life, to not cower in the face of pressure from the fossil fuel industry. Instead, it is time for our movements and elected representatives to stand firm and oppose Manchin’s dirty side deal in all its forms. There is too much at stake to do otherwise. The time for being strong-armed by this fossil fuel lobbyist is over.
In order to avert the worst impacts of the climate crisis, the remaining fossil fuel reserves must stay in the ground and we must begin to reduce emissions at source. Our lives, the well-being of our communities, and the very future of Mother Earth depends on it.
Democratic leadership: You must do everything in your power to block this deal. The time to act is now.