FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 16, 2020
Virginia Leaders Praise Joe Biden’s Environmental Justice Plan
Today, leaders in Virginia praised Joe Biden’s plan to secure environmental justice and equitable economic opportunity in a clean energy future. The current COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted how profoundly the energy and environmental policy decisions of the past have failed communities of color. As president, Biden will use an inclusive and empowering All-of-Government approach; make decisions that are driven by data and science; target resources in a way that is consistent with prioritization of environmental and climate justice; and assess and address risks to communities from the next public health emergency.
“For generations, communities of color here in Virginia and across the nation have been targeted for the riskiest projects including power plants, toxic waste sites and factories spewing noxious air and unhealthy drinking water,” said Congressman Donald McEachin (VA-04). “While President Trump calls climate change a hoax, there are too many Americans suffering from this reality. It is past time we take meaningful action toward ameliorating these environmental wrongs and provide communities on the frontlines of our climate crisis a voice and a means to fight back against the pollution that threatens their children and families. As president, Joe Biden will use a much-needed, inclusive all-of-government approach to provide new opportunities to those that have been disproportionately burdened by pollution and economic and racial inequality.”
“When we talk about uplifting communities of color, we need to seriously talk about environmental justice as a part of those efforts,” said Virginia House Majority Leader Del. Charniele Herring (D-Alexandria). “For far too long, Black and brown communities bear the brunt of environmental injustices. Thanks to Vice President Joe Biden’s plan to secure environmental justice and an equitable clean energy future, our communities will be brought into the decision-making process.”
“The Trump Administration has not only rolled back Obama-Biden climate regulations, but it has consistently undermined our clean energy future,” said Delegate Jay Jones (D-Norfolk). “Communities of color, indigenous communities, and rural localities need to have a seat at the table when decisions are made about their land, water, or air. Vice President Biden’s plan will tackle environmental injustices and make sure every community has a seat at the table.”
“Virginia voters have shown they want elected officials who hold polluters accountable. Donald Trump has stacked his administration with people with ties to polluters,” said Delegate Elizabeth Guzman (D-Prince William). “We need a president like Joe Biden, who is a champion for the working class and who will protect our environment. His plan will ensure we create good-paying union jobs we need in order to deliver a clean energy future.”
“Environmental injustice is one of the contributors to the health disparities in Black communities that are being exemplified by the COVID crisis. Institutional racism determines the communities where polluted air and contaminated water fall,” said Taikein Cooper, Prince Edward County Democratic Chair and Environmental Justice Leader. “It is great to see Vice President Biden’s plan calls for tackling environmental justice–including fixing water contamination and air pollution in marginalized communities.”
Full plan can be found HERE.