Monday, April 26, 2021
You may know that this spring’s Illinois Environmental Lobby Day, April 26, is just around the corner! Because of COVID, this Lobby Day will be virtual, Meetings with elected officials will be scheduled in advance and held via Zoom. Lobbying will focus on the Clean Energy Jobs Act, but also Lead Service Line Replacement and Environmental Justice in Permitting.
Click “Other” and then type in Eco-Justice Collaborative. Once you register, you’ll be added to a lobby team, and your team guide will reach out closer to the event with your meeting time.
Putting Equity Front and Center
The Clean Energy Jobs Act (CEJA) will transition Illinois’ power sector completely away from fossil fuels by 2030; support workers and communities impacted by the decline of coal; and significantly expand clean energy generation and good-paying clean energy jobs in our state. It’s good for the climate, and it’s good for Illinois!
The equity and justice components of the bill were developed with representatives of Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) communities. They include a plans to break down the barriers in job training and clean energy entrepreneurship that have kept BIPOC communities from sharing in the benefits of clean energy.
“We don’t just want electric vehicle charging stations, rooftop and community solar, and energy efficiency projects completed in Black neighborhoods and communities. We want Black workers installing them, and we want Black-owned businesses designing the projects and getting them built. Chicago should be at the forefront of moving from the Rust Belt to a Green Belt. Clean energy must become an engine of safety and stability in our communities, and CEJA is the only comprehensive energy bill that delivers on that promise,” said State Sen. Robert Peters, Senate chair of the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus
The bill prioritizes equitable hiring and ownership, by giving companies meeting specified equity actions priority access to renewable energy, energy efficiency, and electric vehicle incentives. An equity point score system is used in competitive procurements and through program set-asides to reward companies that take some or all of the following actions: hire a minority workforce; are a disadvantaged business enterprise; meet equitable subcontracting requirements; hire workforce hub training graduates; are participants in the entrepreneurship and contractor incubator; are small businesses; have labor peace agreements; and create community benefits agreements. Read more here.
You don’t need to be an expert to participate. There are designated team leaders that will take charge of organizing and facilitate meetings.
If three or more individuals are interested in learning more about the Clean Energy Jobs Act, EJC will host a zoom meeting that showcases key elements of the bill, and focuses on the equity components that make this bill different from other energy legislation that has been introduced. If you are interested, please email Pam.
Illinois faces an economic and public health crisis, a racial and economic justice crisis, and a crisis of utility corruption, and this comprehensive bill can move us forward. #CEJA can’t wait.
We hope you’ll consider joining us! Register here, today.