Congratulations to CJA members building power in the northeast region: Alternatives for Community and Environment, Connecticut Coalition for Environmental Justice, Institute for Policy Studies, NAACP Environmental & Climate Justice Program (and their Maryland chapter), Ironbound Community Corporation, New York City Environmental Justice Alliance and UPROSE, along with their state partners, who have successfully blocked the incorporation of the majority of northeast states from joining the Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI). After more than ten years in the making and with the expectation of finally securing 12 states to participate, TCI launched in the northeast yesterday with little fanfare and only 3 states plus the District of Columbia (Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut) on board. While New York and New Jersey are still a part of the TCI informational table, they – as the largest states in the northeast – are now questioning the purpose, equity process, and revenue that TCI could bring. (Does Brexit ring a bell?
Essentially, TCI is a cap and trade scheme that purports to reduce car pollution through expanding electric vehicles. However, the reality is not as rosy. The real life cost for those electric vehicles will again be at the expense of frontline communities in the form of pollution from existing power plants in their neighborhoods, resulting in a deepening of environmental racism and sacrifice zones. Hear from CJA’s steering committee member in this recent New York Times article: A Plan by Eastern States to Cap Tailpipe Emissions Gets Off to a Slow Start to learn more.