Newsom Budget Boosts Revolutionary California Climate Effort

Transformative Climate Communities, Seen as National Model, Gets $420 million Over 3 Years

Contact: Bruce Mirken, Greenlining Institute Associate Director for Media Relations, 415-846-7758 (cell)

SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA – In his May budget revision, California Governor Gavin Newsom has proposed a game-changing increase in and stabilization of funding for one of California’s most creative and effective climate programs, Transformative Climate Communities.

Based on legislation passed in 2016, authored by Assemblymember Autumn Burke and sponsored by The Greenlining Institute and the California Environmental Justice Alliance, Transformative Climate Communities offers a model for fighting climate change, building economic prosperity and redressing historic injustices by funding community-developed climate projects in the state’s most under-resourced communities.

“Transformative Climate Communities is unique in two ways,” said Greenlining Institute Vice President of Policy Alvaro Sanchez. “First, it places communities first, requiring that plans and projects be developed with community leadership, based on what residents need and want. Second, unlike most government programs, it puts the pieces together, linking things like clean energy, transportation, affordable housing near transit and more in ways that both cut carbon emissions and create healthier, more liveable, more prosperous neighborhoods.”

“TCC should be a national model for how to do climate policy right, putting communities first and connecting the dots between energy, transportation, housing and jobs,” Sanchez continued. “We applaud the governor for proposing a level of funding in California that can truly tap into this program’s potential, with stable funding of $140 million a year for the next three years. We hope  legislators will go even farther and raise it to the $500 million level that environmental justice advocates have proposed. Congress and the administration should use this as a model as they look at proposals like the Green New Deal for Cities Act.”

TCC elevates community ownership by requiring that all projects develop a collaborative governance structure between stakeholders such as local government, community-based organizations and residents. This ensures that projects are derived from resident-identified needs, assets and visions, and gives community members who know best more ownership over the changes taking place in their own neighborhoods. It also requires applicants to develop plans for community engagement, workforce development, displacement avoidance and climate resilience.

Although hampered by inadequate funding since its inception, TCC has still produced some remarkable results. In Stockton, for example, a $10.8 million TCC grant is funding streetscape improvements, solar installations on over 100 single-family homes and several multi-family housing complexes, energy and water efficiency upgrades for more than 500 households, the planting of over 1,500 trees plus weekly healthy produce boxes for 50 families – simultaneously fighting climate change while providing a better quality of life for residents and promoting jobs and economic opportunities. The Greenlining Institute is presently analyzing TCC’s implementation thus far and will be releasing its findings later this year.

To learn more about The Greenlining Institute, visit www.greenlining.org.

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THE GREENLINING INSTITUTE works toward a future when communities of color can build wealth, live in healthy places filled with economic opportunity, and are ready to meet the challenges posed by climate change.
www.greenlining.org
@Greenlining

Newsom “California Comeback” Budget Can Help California Build a Just Recovery

Greenlining Institute Urges Legislators to Emphasize Racial, Economic Equity

Contact: Bruce Mirken, Greenlining Institute Associate Director for Media Relations, 415-846-7758 (cell)

The revised “California Comeback” budget released by Gov. Gavin Newsom today can pave the way for California’s efforts to build a just recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and a just economy that works for all, and legislators must build on what the governor has proposed, The Greenlining Institute said today.

“We’re heartened by much of what Gov. Newsom has proposed,” said Greenlining Institute President and CEO Debra Gore-Mann. “Now it’s up to the legislature to build on this foundation, using both the budget and pending legislation to build a truly just economy in California. The budget affects all of us, so we urge everyone to contact their legislators and push them to seize this opportunity to pass a just, equitable budget”

Highlights of the governor’s revised budget include:

  • Utility Debt Relief. Greenlining strongly applauds Gov. Newsom’s plan to provide $2 billion in assistance for past-due water and utility bills. This can prevent hundreds of thousands of California households from losing these vital services in publicly owned and investor owned utilities’ territories. More relief will be needed as the state recovers, but this an essential first step.
  • Transformative Climate Communities. The governor’s proposed allocation of $420 million over three years for TCC, an innovative program that funds community-led climate projects that integrate clean energy, transportation, affordable housing and more, represents a huge step in the right direction. We urge the legislature to fully fund TCC at the $500 million level urged by advocates. A companion statement amplifies our thoughts on this ground-breaking program.
  • Housing and Rent Relief. Housing unaffordability is an existential crisis facing California’s communities of color. The governor’s proposed $7 billion allocation for Project Homekey — a program administered by the California Department of Housing and Community Development that funds cities, counties, and housing authorities to purchase and rehabilitate 46,000 units of housing, including hotels, motels, vacant apartment buildings and other buildings and convert them into interim or permanent, long-term housing — is an excellent step in the right direction. We also applaud his commitment of $7.2 billion to help low-income tenants financially affected by the COVID-19 pandemic cover all of their outstanding rent and utility payments.
  • Stimulus Payments. In the governor’s newly proposed $100 billion California Comeback Plan, nearly $12 billion will be set aside for stimulus checks — $600 payments for qualifying taxpayers. This is an essential step in ensuring that families still struggling due to COVID-related economic impacts do not fall farther behind. We applaud the governor’s plan and look forward to additional innovative thinking to address other areas of racial and social inequality.
  • Broadband. The Greenlining Institute strongly supports the governor’s broadband budget and commitment to closing the digital divide. The proposed budget balances short and long term needs by providing $7 billion in funding towards open-access middle-mile broadband networks, municipal broadband and last mile infrastructure that will provide Californians with long-term benefits, while ensuring families can afford the internet while these new networks are built. Municipal broadband and open-access infrastructure investments will create jobs, provide faster internet connections to Californians and enable internet service providers to more easily enter the broadband market and compete with incumbents that charge high prices and are slow to upgrade their networks. The governor’s broadband budget creates a sustainable path for closing the digital divide for families that need internet access for jobs, education, health and economic opportunity.
  • Clean Transportation. Electric vehicle equity programs have proven health and economic benefits for families and communities. The governor’s proposal of $3.2 billion altogether over three years for clean transportation, including $1.4 billion for clean trucks and buses, represents a historic step forward. Because pollution from diesel medium- and heavy-duty vehicles is toxic and disproportionately harms communities of color, this funding will make a huge difference in our communities’ health. The May revision also proposes $650 million over three years for Clean Cars 4 All/Equity Programs and the Clean Vehicle Rebate Program. We are pleased to see equity programs receive $250 million, programs with proven health and economic benefits for families and communities. The revised budget also allocates $400 million over three years for the Clean Vehicle Rebate Program, which has been demonstrated to mainly benefit higher-income households. While Greenlining believes that transforming the car market to electric vehicles is important, it is time for the decade-long investment in CVRP to start ramping down. For now, the governor’s investment in CVRP must be targeted to low-income and middle-income Californians.
  • Urban and Community Forestry. California’s urban forests sequester carbon and are critical to helping the most vulnerable populations adapt to climate change, create community resilience and preserve their mental and physical health. Greenlining supported $200 million for this program but the governor has proposed $23 million.
  • Low-Income Weatherization Program. This critical program helps low-income households cut their utility bills and improve health and safety while saving energy, creating jobs and preserving affordable housing.  The governor’s proposed $50 million allocation is seriously inadequate. Legislators should increase it to $375 million.
  • Urban Greening. Vulnerable populations too often lack access to parks and green spaces within walking distance of their homes. The Urban Greening Program helps to mitigate these inequalities  and Gov. Newsom’s proposed  $200 million over two years represents a solid beginning.
  • Community Resilience Centers. The governor proposed a one-time investment of $150 million to support the development and enhancement of community resilience centers split between local fairgrounds and other community facilities. We are excited about the opportunity to develop a new program for community resilience centers that focuses on placing facilities closest to vulnerable communities that address the growing needs of working class communities of color in the face of the converging climate, economic, public health crises. We believe this important program should be funded at $500 million.
  • Regional Climate Collaboratives. Implementation of SB 1072 (Leyva, 2018) to create the Regional Climate Collaboratives program will build the capacity of local communities to make the transition to a climate resilient future, building community-driven leadership, knowledge, and skills. The governor’s proposed $20 million represents a solid start but should be increased to $35 million.
  • Vulnerable Communities Platform. Although there is mounting evidence of the unequal effects of climate change, California has no existing tool that holistically and comprehensively displays the data needed to identify the most vulnerable communities. Greenlining commends the governor for including this priority in the proposed $5 million under community resilience. We strongly recommend that the state use some of this money to resource a community advisory committee to center the vision and expertise of communities disproportionately impacted by climate change in the development and implementation of the mapping platform.

“We urge the legislature to move swiftly to approve a budget that meets the real needs of California’s diverse communities, but legislators can’t stop there,” Gore-Mann said. “We also urge swift passage of SB 17, to create an Office of Racial Equity, and HR 39, which will commit the Assembly to analyzing the racial equity implications of new legislation. Problems based in racism and discrimination need race-conscious solutions if we are build a truly just economy in our state.”

To learn more about The Greenlining Institute, visit www.greenlining.org.

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THE GREENLINING INSTITUTE works toward a future when communities of color can build wealth, live in healthy places filled with economic opportunity, and are ready to meet the challenges posed by climate change.
www.greenlining.org
@Greenlining

The Greenlining Institute and RePower LA Coalition Applaud Gov. Newsom’s Relief Plans

Unpaid Utility Bills Threatened Hundreds of Thousands with Shut-Offs

Contact:
Bruce Mirken, Greenlining Institute Associate Director for Media Relations, 415-846-7758 (cell)
Hodan Hassan, Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy Communication Specialist, 206-676-2010 (cell)

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA – With utility shut-offs looming for hundreds of thousands of California families struggling with COVID-19-related economic hardships, The Greenlining Institute praised Governor Gavin Newsom’s announcement today. The California Comeback plan outlines the Administration’s commitment to relieving  families burdened by mounting water and energy bills.

“With millions of Californians either unemployed or with greatly reduced incomes due to the pandemic, hundreds of thousands of households face having their electricity, gas or water shut off June 30 without bold state action,” said Carmelita Miller, Greenlining’s Senior Director of Climate Equity. “This proposal, along with vitally needed help for renters, will help keep struggling families afloat as our economy revives. We’re glad the governor listened to LAANE, Greenlining and other advocates who pushed for this help, and it’s critical that the legislature move quickly to adopt these proposals in its final budget.”

The RePower LA Coalition, anchored by the Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy and SCOPE, has been working with leaders on the ground in Los Angeles on issues of energy justice. Utility debt has long been a concern for low-income ratepayers, and the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated existing disparities. As of November 2020, residential customers of LADWP had over $469 million in arrearages for water, power, and sewage bills. This is impacting over 500,000 customers in Los Angeles, the majority of them being low income ratepayers. Similar scenarios have been playing out up and down California with more than 800,000 thousand households at risk of service disconnection statewide.

“LAANE and our coalition partners have been uplifting the issue of utility debt since the beginning of the pandemic. Low-income communities and communities of color are most impacted by utility debt,” said Agustin Cabrera, the Director of RePower LA, “We heard from our partners on the ground that utility debt was a growing concern for many low-income Angelenos, and that’s why we started our campaign. We realize that there are limitations on publicly-owned utilities, like LADWP; additional resources are especially important. We are eager to work with the State Legislature and the governor to move this proposal quickly.”

To learn more about The Greenlining Institute, visit www.greenlining.org. To learn more about The Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy, visit www.laane.org.

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 THE GREENLINING INSTITUTE works toward a future when communities of color can build wealth, live in healthy places filled with economic opportunity, and are ready to meet the challenges posed by climate change.

www.greenlining.org
@Greenlining

Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy LAANE is an advocacy organization committed to economic, environmental, and racial justice. We bridge community and labor power to win policies that improve the lives of working families in Los Angeles and in Long Beach

www.laane.org
@LAANE

CA Assembly Resolution Would Encourage Equity Analysis of Bills

Measure by Assemblymember Gipson Would Fill Gap in Analyzing Legislation  

Contact:
Brenda Contreras, Legislative/Press Aide for Assemblymember Mike A. Gipson, Brenda.Contreras@asm.ca.gov
Bruce Mirken, Greenlining Institute Associate Director for Media Relations, 415-846-7758 (cell)

SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Mike A. Gipson (D-Carson), joined by Assemblymembers Adrin Nazarian, Mark Stone, Luz Rivas and Cristina Garcia, has introduced HR 39, designed to address a major gap in the analysis of new legislation proposed in Sacramento. HR 39 would encourage the California Assembly to explore methods to integrate equity more formally into its daily activities, including the potential adoption of equity impact analysis into the existing committee and floor bill analysis processes.

“Communities of color and other marginalized populations have been disproportionately harmed by poor government decisions, even if unintentional,” said Assemblymember Mike A. Gipson (D-Carson).“ I can think of no better time to reflect and make sure we don’t repeat those mistakes and to guarantee that we bring a new level of transparency and analysis to the legislative process. We must ensure that all Californians have an equal opportunity to benefit from policies that profoundly impact them, such as education, housing, employment, health care, etc. Right now, each new bill gets an analysis examining things like related legislation and fiscal impact, but nothing about its impact on low-income Californians or historically marginalized communities. The equity impact assessment would update the existing government process and identify gaps in our policy-making decisions.”

All levels of government have begun to embrace the need for such analysis. President Biden recently issued an executive order requiring all federal departments and agencies to “recognize and work to redress inequities in their policies and programs that serve as barriers to equal opportunity.” Five states — Connecticut, Florida, Iowa, Oregon, and New Jersey — have adopted and implemented policies requiring racial equity impact statements for certain types of proposals.

“As the Biden administration works to build a serious federal approach to racial equity, it’s already receiving hostile responses claiming that equity must mean racial quotas and is bad for America,” said Debra Gore-Mann, president and CEO of The Greenlining Institute, which sponsored the resolution. “California must not be intimidated, but instead must help lead the effort to commit to equity. We cannot capitulate to white grievance that is rooted in white privilege and a false sense of superiority. It is time to be bold, proactive and center racial equity to build an inclusive country, and HR 39 will help get us there.”

Sammy Nunez, executive director of Fathers & Families of San Joaquin said, “As the most diverse city in America, Stockton’s  2020 election served as a barometer to measure and forecast the socio-political realities of people of color across the United States.  The political landscape is indicative of racial injustice, and the overt oppressive forces that have permeated every aspect of our country since its inception. However, this also presents an opportunity for investments that can transform our struggles into solutions to transcend and heal the racial divide that has kept us from meeting our full potential as a state and nation.”

The Greenlining Institute believes that applying racial and social equity analytics to understand the complexities and harsh realities imposed on people of color represents the minimum California must do to ensure a future devoid of neglect and abandonment and undo the social, political, and institutional traumas perpetuated by the state. This resolution would illuminate  the benefits for all Californians of legislating through an equity-based lens that builds opportunities for all Californians.

To learn more about The Greenlining Institute, visit www.greenlining.org.

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THE GREENLINING INSTITUTE
A Multi-Ethnic Public Policy, Research and Advocacy Institute
www.greenlining.org
@Greenlining

May 5-6 Racial Equity Summit Features “Caste” Author Isabel Wilkerson, Alicia Garza, Michael Tubbs, Manuel Pastor & More

Greenlining Institute Virtual Summit Expands to Two Days of Programming 

Contact: Bruce Mirken, Greenlining Institute Associate Director for Media Relations, 415-846-7758 (cell)

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA – With recent events propelling racial equity to the top of the national agenda, The Greenlining Institute’s annual Economic Summit will bring together an array of world-changing advocates and thinkers to examine where we stand and what possibilities lie ahead. Momentum: A Virtual Summit on Racial Equity expands to two days of online programming, May 5 and 6.

The keynote speaker will be Isabel Wilkerson, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of the bestselling books Caste and The Warmth of Other Suns. After her talk, Wilkerson will engage in an in-depth discussion with Alexis Madrigal, staff writer at The Atlantic and co-founder of the COVID Tracking Project.

In a year that has brought both a renewed sense of hope but also extraordinary challenges, Manuel Pastor, Professor of Sociology and American Studies & Ethnicity at the University of Southern California, will join New Georgia Project Chief Executive Officer Nsé Ufot for a fireside chat highlighting the extraordinary efforts of Georgia voting rights organizers and, the enormous power our movements have built, and the continuing threats to the right to vote.

In another timely session, Black Lives Matter co-creator Alicia Garza will join Cat Brooks, co-founder of Oakland’s Anti Police-Terror Project, Alex Tom of the Center for Empowered Politics and Dulce Garcia of Border Angels to discuss how we can sustain and grow multi-issue and multi-racial organizing efforts to address the crisis in policing, the rise in anti-Asian violence, and broken immigration policies.

On the Summit’s closing day, Michael Tubbs, Special Advisor for Economic Mobility and Opportunity to California Governor Gavin Newsom — who as Mayor of Stockton pioneered that city’s guaranteed basic income program — will join PolicyLink Founder in Residence Angela Glover Blackwell to examine how we can reimagine a society that is truly built upon principles of justice and equity, moving beyond incremental reforms to dream big and lay the groundwork for real transformation of our systems.

Additional panels and discussions will examine a wide variety of issues, from algorithmic bias to reparations and the growing movement to eliminate use of fossil fuels from homes and other buildings. There will also be music, interactive opportunities and an Expo. Tickets are available through 11 a.m. on May 6.

Members of the media wishing to attend should email Bruce Mirken as soon as possible at brucem@greenlining.org for a complimentary pass.

To learn more about The Greenlining Institute, visit www.greenlining.org.

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THE GREENLINING INSTITUTE
A Multi-Ethnic Public Policy, Research and Advocacy Institute
www.greenlining.org
@Greenlining

Chauvin Trial Shows Need for Broad Focus on Systemic Racism

Officer’s Conviction Necessary but Not Sufficient, Greenlining Institute Says 

Contact: Bruce Mirken, Greenlining Institute Associate Director for Media Relations, 415-846-7758 (cell)

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA – In response to the announcement of the conviction of former police officer Derek Chauvin on all three counts in the killing of George Floyd, Greenlining Institute President and CEO Debra Gore-Mann released the following statement:

“Today we experienced a small measure of justice as Derek Chauvin was convicted and the killing of George Floyd was recognized as the criminal act it was. But we shouldn’t fool ourselves into thinking that one conviction of one cop for a killing the whole world witnessed on video will change a fundamentally racist and dysfunctional system. The whole law enforcement system must be rethought and rebuilt from the ground up so that there are no more George Floyds, Daunte Wrights and Adam Toledos. But even that is just a start.

“Policing doesn’t operate in a vacuum. Systemic racism exists in policing because systemic racism exists in America. We must fundamentally uproot the disease of racism in our society and create a transformative path forward.”

To learn more about The Greenlining Institute, visit www.greenlining.org.

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THE GREENLINING INSTITUTE works toward a future when communities of color can build wealth, live in healthy places filled with economic opportunity, and are ready to meet the challenges posed by climate change.
www.greenlining.org
@Greenlining

As Biden Pushes Clean Mobility, New Report Examines Long-Term Funding Issues

Urges Sustainable, Equitable Support for Pioneering Programs 

Contact: Bruce Mirken, Greenlining Institute Associate Director for Media Relations, 415-846-7758 (cell)

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA – California has an array of pioneering programs aimed at promoting clean mobility in a way that also enhances racial/economic equity – issues that have just been highlighted by President Biden’s infrastructure plan. But to truly make a difference, such programs need long-term, stable funding, a new report from The Greenlining Institute argues.

The new report, Sustaining Clean Mobility Equity Programs, seeks to answer a critical question: How do we take these small, pilot projects and reliably fund them and bring them to scale, even after any hoped-for federal help runs out? And how do we fund them equitably, without burdening the very communities they seek to help?

The report looks at specific funding strategies that can be used by any state or community, from congestion pricing and road charging to taxing ride-hailing companies, user fees, advertising and sponsorships, weighing their advantages and disadvantages. It also highlights how to deploy other strategies to strengthen and stabilize equitable clean mobility programs, including community partnerships and improvements to the way governments administer grants.

“Many of these California pilot programs have been exclusively funded through the state’s cap-and-trade system, but that mechanism has significant drawbacks,” said report author Hana Creger, Greenlining’s Climate Equity Senior Program Manager. “Low-income, disadvantaged communities and communities of color need clean mobility, and that means identifying stable, equitable funding that allows these programs to grow. And we first need to prioritize the development of community vision, priorities and partnerships so that we can sustain these programs over the long haul.”

To learn more about The Greenlining Institute, visit www.greenlining.org.

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THE GREENLINING INSTITUTE works toward a future when communities of color can build wealth, live in healthy places filled with economic opportunity, and are ready to meet the challenges posed by climate change.
www.greenlining.org
@Greenlining

New Report Highlights Medical Debt Crisis & Solutions

Top Cause of U.S. Bankruptcies, Worsened by COVID, Hits Communities of Color Hardest 

Contact: Bruce Mirken, Greenlining Institute Associate Director for Media Relations, 415-846-7758 (cell)

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA – Medical debt, long the leading cause of U.S. bankruptcies, has been greatly worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic – but the problem is solvable according to a new Greenlining Institute report, Solving the Medical Debt Crisis.

Even before the pandemic – which cost over five million Americans their employee health coverage as many ran up unexpected medical and hospital bills – medical debt caused approximately 62% of bankruptcies. And its impact was not distributed equally, Greenlining’s analysis shows: Nationally, about one third of Black adults have past-due medical debt, compared to less than a quarter of Whites. In California, people of color are more than half again as likely as Whites to have some sort of past-due debt in collections.

As bad as the problem is, Greenlining concludes that state and national actions could go a long way to solving it.

“Medical debt is a crisis, but it’s fixable,” said report author Brianna Wells, Greenlining’s Health Equity Fellow. “Health care systems and the federal and state governments can and should act to remove this crushing burden from millions of American families.”

Key policy recommendations include:

• Expand comprehensive financial assistance policies for all large, for-profit health care facilities, including ambulatory surgical centers and outpatient clinics.

• End the practice of turning over medical debt to third-party collection agencies and prohibit such agencies from reporting medical debt to credit reporting bureaus.

• Mandate public reporting of debt collection practices by healthcare providers.

• Center medical debt elimination as a part of California’s COVID-19 recovery package via measures such as the proposed COVID-19 Medical Debt Collection Relief Act, which would suspend the collection of medical debt retroactively from February 1, 2020 until the “end of the public health emergency” and ban wage garnishment and bank account seizure.

• Cancel medical debt outright. The government can purchase medical debt from debt collectors and health care providers at discounted rates, aiding consumers while avoiding a financial windfall for debt collectors.

• Incorporate debt cancellation into California’s larger strategy toward reparations for racial injustice. Closing the racial wealth gap by addressing debt (including medical debt) in California requires a reparations package for the Black community.

To learn more about The Greenlining Institute, visit www.greenlining.org.

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THE GREENLINING INSTITUTE works toward a future when communities of color can build wealth, live in healthy places filled with economic opportunity, and are ready to meet the challenges posed by climate change.
www.greenlining.org
@Greenlining

New Report: California’s Clean Mobility Programs Can Guide National Efforts

Mobility Equity Can Drive Progress in Underserved Communities 

Contact: Bruce Mirken, Greenlining Institute Associate Director for Media Relations, 415-846-7758 (cell)

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA – As the Biden administration advances ambitious proposals to spur the transition to electric vehicles and promote clean transportation and environmental justice, The Greenlining Institute has released a detailed examination of California’s pioneering programs aimed at similar goals: Clean Mobility Equity: A Playbook. California’s experiences could provide lessons for the rest of the country.

As Caltrans recently acknowledged, past transportation projects divided and harmed communities of color and low-income neighborhoods. In recent years the state has launched a variety of pilot programs designed to promote both clean mobility and racial/economic equity, hoping to fight climate change while beginning to right some past wrongs. These programs, ranging from clean vehicle purchase assistance to a low-emissions vanpool program for agricultural workers and other forms of electric shared mobility, represent the future of mobility both in California and nationwide.

“Clean mobility can do more than just fight climate change,” noted Hana Creger, lead author of the report. “It can build community and create new opportunities in the neighborhoods that for too long have had the least. The Biden administration should look at California’s example and copy what works.”

Greenlining conducted a detailed equity evaluation of a dozen of these pilot programs based on the organization’s Six Standards of Equitable Investment – standards emphasizing that programs need to be driven by community-identified needs and provide intentional benefits to underserved communities.

In addition to specific suggestions for the individual programs, Creger and her co-authors created a broad set of recommendations for policymakers in California and throughout the U.S. who seek to build a clean transportation system that truly serves all communities. Key recommendations include:

  • Overall, public funds from states and the federal government should be vastly increased and prioritized to improve access to clean mobility for the populations who face the biggest barriers to adopting this technology, such as low-income communities and communities of color.
  • The best programs take a comprehensive approach to mobility equity and are led by the communities they impact, such as the Sustainable Transportation Equity Project. Such programs should be funded in California and scaled nationally.
  • California should institute structural reforms to improve interagency coordination and funding in order to maximize available resources for clean mobility investments and target them to the people with the most barriers. Multiple, overlapping programs lead to duplication and inefficiencies.
  • Programs that continue to entrench our dependency on single-occupancy vehicles should be phased out over time. While electric vehicles represent a major improvement over gasoline vehicles in terms of climate impacts and the transition to cleaner cars must continue, in the long haul we need policies that reduce congestion, vehicle trips and unsustainable land use patterns.

Chanell Fletcher, Deputy Executive Officer of Environmental Justice at the California Air Resources Board, praised the report: “We know how essential clean transportation is for low-income communities and communities of color. This report is an amazing resource that will elevate the variety of California clean mobility equity pilot programs. These programs will fight climate change, reduce air pollution, and most importantly improve access to opportunities for low-income communities and communities of color.”

To learn more about The Greenlining Institute, visit www.greenlining.org.

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THE GREENLINING INSTITUTE works toward a future when communities of color can build wealth, live in healthy places filled with economic opportunity, and are ready to meet the challenges posed by climate change.
www.greenlining.org
@Greenlining

The Greenlining Institute Announces New Strategic Plan

Contact: Bruce Mirken, Greenlining Institute Associate Director for Media Relations, 415-846-7758 (cell)

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA – As the U.S. increasingly grapples with racial equity issues and a year and a half after Debra Gore-Mann became the organization’s first woman of color President and CEO, The Greenlining Institute is launching a new Strategic Plan to guide its work over the next three years.

The Strategic Plan commits Greenlining to working “towards a future where communities of color can build wealth, live in healthy places filled with economic opportunity, and are ready to meet the challenges posed by climate change.” It focuses the organization’s efforts on creation of a “just economy” that is “cooperative, sustainable, participatory, fair and healthy.”

To get there, Greenlining will focus on its three main roles:

  • Bridge builders, bringing together diverse players from the public, private and nonprofit sectors to create powerful solutions for lasting change.
  • Advocates, leading strategy and policy efforts, raising the visibility of issues that impact communities of color, and building political will for transformative policies to end racial inequity.
  • Incubators, working with communities to generate and test new policies and programs while training multi-ethnic leaders so they can be the strongest and most resilient advocates for change.

In order to more effectively push for systemic change, Greenlining is realigning its internal staff structure to more precisely achieve the new plan’s priorities, while maintaining its ongoing work on issues such as banking, housing, climate, health and access to technology, including crucial work with regulatory bodies such as the California Public Utilities Commission and Federal Reserve.

“Since our founding, Greenlining has brought literally hundreds of billions of dollars in investment into communities of color, but dollars – even when equitably distributed – aren’t enough,” said Greenlining Institute President and CEO Debra Gore-Mann. “While we work to meet the immediate needs of underserved communities, we’re going to redouble our efforts to fundamentally transform the systems that created these inequities in the first place.”

To learn more about The Greenlining Institute, visit www.greenlining.org.

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THE GREENLINING INSTITUTE works toward a future when communities of color can build wealth, live in healthy places filled with economic opportunity, and are ready to meet the challenges posed by climate change.
www.greenlining.org
@Greenlining