FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 1, 2021
Press Contact: Vanessa Rule, Lead Organizer, 350VT, 802-356-0205 [email protected]
350VT CALLS ON THE LEGISLATURE AND AGENCIES TO STOP GREENWASHING AND ENACT BOLD AND JUST CLIMATE POLICY in 2022
Today marks the release of the first iteration of Vermont’s Climate Action Plan - the map for how our state will reach its greenhouse gas reduction goals to address the climate crisis, as mandated by the Global Warming Solutions Act. 350VT thanks the Councilors and members of the Council’s sub-committees who have put so much work into developing this plan.
We are at a crossroads. What parts of the plan become reality and how this is done will determine whether Vermont is a true leader in helping to create a just and climate resilient future for everyone. The Legislature and the Agencies who are charged with implementing this plan have an incredible opportunity not only to lead on climate, but to improve the lives of Vermonters by, as 350VT member and Montpelier resident Jesse Scarlato says, “enacting solutions that address not only the end of the world but also the end of the month. And we need people all across Vermont to make sure that people at all levels of government are prioritizing a just transition that leaves no one behind.”
To do this, it is imperative that policy-makers listen to and work with Vermonters who will be living with the impact of the decisions that get made in the coming year. So far, the public, particularly the most socio-economically vulnerable of us, has been inadequately engaged in the development of this plan.
We also need real solutions, not loopholes for corporate profit. This will not happen unless the state puts in place a transparent and accurate method of counting our actual greenhouse gas emissions to stop greenwashing and the maintenance of business as usual.
350VT is calling on the Legislature and state agencies to take the time and make it a priority to listen to Vermonters who stand to be the most impacted by climate disruption. Then, take action and provide the leadership and the courage to center the needs of Vermont's most vulnerable citizens at the heart and forefront of every choice and decision to implement a just and equitable transition to renewable energy. This means enacting legislation and funding mechanisms that will strengthen the whole fabric of our state and lift up everyone.