Clean energy is the future. To meet clean energy goals, nonprofit organizations, and private sector businesses will come together to find ways to advance support for our nation’s energy sector. It is important to lift up new technological advancements, marketing techniques, and policies that will get us to a cleaner future. But what does this mean for America’s low-income and communities of color? When and how will they benefit from our transition to clean energy?
There are a host of ways frontline communities can benefit from clean energy:
Public Health. Implementation of clean renewable energy sources will displace existing power plants running on coal and other fossil fuels. Eliminating this leading driver of our climate crisis can help reduce harmful emissions and improve air quality.
Reduce Cost Burdens. Clean energy sources give power back to consumers and provide opportunities for individuals to earn credit on electricity bills, which can lower household expenses.
Job Creation. Introducing clean energy sources into communities not only engages residents but can also create job opportunities in the community.
Resilience. Transitioning to clean energy will lessen the impacts of natural disasters and reduce our dependence on foreign fuel sources. As disasters happen, rather than waiting for power companies to dispatch and fix electrical grids, communities can restore power themselves quicker.
But in order to achieve these outcomes, we must take a stand and come together. Attaining environmental justice will not only be about rectifying harms but also making sure everyone has access to environmental benefits. Clean energy sources, like electric vehicles and solar, are the very environmental benefits that have the potential to alleviate some of the burdens low-income and communities of color face. Together, we must organize to demand our elected officials do more to make clean energy a reality for everyone.