Every week, Virginia Organizing posts concrete steps so you can take timely and important action! Tips to making your action effective: be polite but firm (don’t yell or curse or get angry); give your name and where you are from; tell whoever answers the phone what your concern is and why; ask for the official position on your issue; and remember, the person answering the phone is not elected and is just doing his or her job..
Don’t forget, you can connect with a local chapter to work for social, racial, economic, environmental, and gender justice at the local level. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can help you connect to one of our community organizers.
Keep Virginia in RGGI!
In 2020, the General Assembly voted for Virginia to join the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). RGGI is a cooperative effort by 11 states to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It brings down emissions by requiring power plants to buy allowances for the pollution they generate. These funds are then used to benefit communities that are affected by climate change.
Since it began, RGGI has reduced emissions by 50% in the participating states (which is much more than the rest of the country) and has raised $6 billion. In Virginia, RGGI has brought in $590 million for the Housing Innovations in Energy Efficiency program (HIEE) and the Virginia Community Flood Preparedness Fund Grant (CFPF).
HIEE funds support low-income housing: the creation and preservation of low-income and extremely low-income energy efficient housing AND major repairs to homes to make them eligible for weatherization. CFPF provides support for regions and localities across Virginia to reduce the impacts of flooding.
In spite of all these benefits, Governor Youngkin has decided to pull Virginia out of RGGI. Last December, the Air Pollution Control Board voted in support of his proposed regulations to withdraw Virginia from RGGI and is now undergoing a year-long process to finalize that decision.
It’s not clear that the board even has the legal right to disregard this law, but in any case RGGI is a valuable program for addressing climate change and harm to low-income communities. Virginia should remain in RGGI.
The Air Pollution Control Board is receiving public comments on this decision until March 31. Thousands of people, and 90% of comments, have been in favor of RGGI. Please add your comment here. Any comment in support of RGGI will be counted, even if it is as short as, “Don’t take Virginia out of RGGI.”
The pressure is building on the Board, and these comments will also have an influence on any future court case that decides whether the administration followed the law. Please comment today!
When you get to the website, click the “Enter a comment” link to share your thoughts with the Board. Make sure you hit Submit at the bottom of that page for your comment to be recorded. (See the image below.)
If you need more information or want to learn more about how to get active in your community, please contact us at email@example.com or 434-984-4655 ext. 227. You can also sign up for email updates and action alerts at http://www.virginia-organizing.org/email-signup.