Blue Green Alliance Publications Feed http://bluegreenalliance.com/news/latest/rss Blue Green Alliance Publications Feed Tue, 24 Jan 2012 05:00:00 +0000 AMPS en hourly 1 BACKGROUNDER: Sound Vehicle Standards & Policies Drive Strong Job Growth http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/backgrounder-sound-vehicle-standards-policies-drive-strong-job-growth Tue, 12 Jul 2016 15:21:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/backgrounder-sound-vehicle-standards-policies-drive-strong-job-growth The goal of the Midterm Evaluation of the 2017-2025 passenger car and truck fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards is to assess technology deployment and cost, but the review naturally spurs a broader discussion of the standards’ impacts, including on jobs. The potential impact is significant as the auto industry sits squarely at the center of advanced manufacturing and the U.S. economy.

Here’s what we know:

Implementation of the fuel economy standards to date has happened simultaneously with a dramatic recovery of the U.S. auto industry.

  • Five years into implementation, the standards are on track and are delivering deep cuts in fuel use and carbon pollution. Over the same period, U.S. automakers have made a dramatic return to profitability and to record sales of more fuel-efficient vehicles across the fleet.   

Since the recession, overall job growth in the industry has been strong, aiding a recovery of U.S. manufacturing as a whole.

  • The U.S. auto industry has added nearly 700,000 direct jobs since the recession low point in mid-2009.[1] These jobs support several million indirect jobs throughout the economy.
  • Direct jobs added include: More than 300,000 added jobs in motor vehicle and parts manufacturing, and 380,000 added jobs at auto dealers. This brings total manufacturing employment in the industry to 930,000—representing nearly 50 percent growth since 2009, and bringing employment at auto and parts dealers to 2 million, which is its highest level ever.
  • Auto manufacturing jobs accounted for 40 percent  of all net jobs added in U.S. manufacturing since the recession.
  • The auto industry hasn’t yet brought back the several hundred thousand manufacturing jobs lost in the decade before the recession, but the past seven years have seen the first period of sustained growth in automotive manufacturing—or in U.S. manufacturing jobs as a whole—since 1999.

Studies predicted added job growth as a result of the standards—and appear to be directionally accurate. 

  • Studies  done between 2010 and 2012—including EPA’s own analysis as part of the rulemaking—predicted additional manufacturing job growth in the range of 50,000- to 100,000 jobs by 2025-2030 as a result of one or both rounds of standards, above and beyond business as usual industry investments or employment levels.[2]
  • These added jobs come from enhanced investment to develop, manufacture and incorporate additional technology necessary to improve fuel efficiency and meet the standard.
  • The scale of added manufacturing job growth is strongly dependent on the share of these new technology manufacturing investments made in the United States.[3]
  • Macro economic studies also looked at total employment impacts of the standards due to direct and indirect job growth, and to consumer re-spending of fuel savings. They show around 500,000 jobs added throughout the economy, even under lower gas price scenarios.[4]

Studies counting actual jobs in companies manufacturing fuel efficient vehicles and components suggest these estimates are in the right ballpark.

  • Data from, 2011 showed 150,000 workers in 500 facilities manufacturing fuel efficient components.[5]  If growth in this subsector of the industry has tracked or exceeded auto manufacturing as a whole, growth of tens of thousands of jobs would be expected. An updated study is underway now.
  • A late 2012 study of actual employment in automotive states showed automotive job growth strongly outpacing the recovery, and numerous plant level examples of fuel economy-related reinvestment.[6]

Studies also confirm the impact of manufacturing policy on domestic automotive employment.

  • Economic analysis done to review the impact of the Administration’s 2009 auto recovery loans found very large economic and jobs benefits, including the preservation of 238,000 manufacturing jobs and 2.6 million jobs throughout the economy.[7]
  • Review of the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan program finds that it secured or added jobs in 18 manufacturing plants in eight states that directly employ 38,000 people today and support approximately 93,000 additional indirect manufacturing jobs throughout the supply chain.[8]

Overall these studies underscore that job growth in the industry depends not only on the overall recovery of the economy and vehicle sales, but also on added investment in innovative  and additional technology driven by the standards, and the degree to which existing and new vehicle technology is built in the United States.

Maintaining sound fuel economy standards and complementary manufacturing policies key to maintaining job growth.

The automotive recovery over the past decade was not an accident, and continuing this upward trajectory depends on sound policy, including:

  • Maintaining effective, long-term, soundly structured fuel economy standards that provide the certainty needed for long-term investment in emerging technologies and jobs. Today’s sound, “footprint”-based standards are critical to maintaining consumer fuel savings, automotive investments, and job growth across all types of vehicles and segments of the industry. (See our recent report on how the standards are working here.[9])
  • Sustaining manufacturing policies and incentives such as the successful ATVM program that encourage manufacturing of advanced vehicle technology and anchor growth of critical networks of advanced transportation suppliers.

Finally, continued job growth in the auto industry— as in U.S. manufacturing as a whole—depends on enacting sound national economic and trade policies, and strong enforcement of the trade and currency policies we have today.


[1] All employment data in this section is from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Analysis and calculations, BlueGreen Alliance. More detailed data, graphs, description of individual studies, and methodology available in our mini-report due out in mid-July.

[3]Driving Growth, CAP, NRDC, UAW, 2010   

[5] Supplying Ingenuity, NRDC, National Wildlife Federation (NWF) and UAW, 2012.

[6]  How Fuel Efficiency is Driving Job Growth in the U.S. Auto Industry, NRDC, NWF, and Michigan League of Conservation Voters, 2012.

[8] BlueGreen Alliance analysis.

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ISSUE BRIEF: Combating Climate Change 426,000 Pickup Trucks at a Time http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/policy-brief-ford-f150 Wed, 22 Jun 2016 16:38:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/policy-brief-ford-f150

The Ford F-150 Shows How Fuel Economy Standards Work and are Working

With gas prices low and the economy recovering, Americans bought record numbers of new vehicles in 2015—also buying more larger vehicles like SUVs and pickup trucks. Amongst the most popular light-duty “half-ton” pickups is the Ford F-150.1 Americans bought 780,000 F-series Ford pickups in 2015—of which about 426,000 were F-150s. The F-150 also provides a concrete example of how America’s landmark fuel economy standards are working to deliver deep fuel savings and carbon emissions reductions, while transform- ing automotive technology, rebuilding jobs in America, and getting consumers great vehicles they want and need.

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LETTER: BlueGreen Alliance Submits Written Comments on the Federal Coal Leasing Program http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/written-comments-and-oral-testimony-on-the-federal-coal-leasing-program Tue, 21 Jun 2016 16:04:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/written-comments-and-oral-testimony-on-the-federal-coal-leasing-program June 21, 2016

 

Sally Jewell, Secretary

U.S. Department of the Interior

1849 C Street NW

Washington, DC 20240

 

Neil Kornze, Director

Bureau of Land Management

1849 C Street NW, Room 5665

Washington, DC 20240

 

In Re:                          Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement to Modernize the Federal Coal Program

 

Submitted via:             BLM_WO_Coal_Program_PEIS_Comments@blm.gov

 

Dear Secretary Jewell and Director Kornze:

On January 15, 2016, the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) issued Order No. 3338 directing the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to conduct a broad, programmatic review of the federal coal leasing program, which is administered by the BLM. This order was issued in response to a range of concerns about whether American taxpayers are receiving a fair return from the development of publicly owned resources, markets for coal, the consequences for coal-dependent communities, and whether the production of coal under the federal program is consistent with the nation’s goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change.

In response, the BlueGreen Alliance, a national coalition of labor unions and environmental organizations representing more than 15 million workers, environmentalists, consumers, and tax-paying citizens, today expresses appreciation for the administration’s effort to reform the federal coal leasing system and to offer comments as to how the system can best serve a wide range of stakeholder interests.

The BlueGreen Alliance believes that the federal coal leasing program is broken and long overdue for an update that ensures fairness to taxpayers and better accounts for environmental impacts. The contemplated overhaul of this program is, however, not only an opportunity to fix a broken system, but also an opportunity to take a hard look at how coal-dependent communities, regional economies, and individual workers can transition to new economic models. It is also imperative that coal companies reclaim public lands that they have developed to mitigate the land and water impacts of coal mines and to assist communities in transition through the jobs which reclamation work provides.

The contemplated review of the federal coal leasing systems must evaluate BLM authority and opportunities—as well as actions other agencies and Congress could take—to help ensure a just transition for workers and communities to a clean energy economy. Such actions should include robust investment in community economic development, protection of worker livelihoods, and development of new tax revenue sources for local economies.

Coal has been an important domestic energy source for decades and that fact will continue in the years ahead. Production of this energy resource has been facilitated by the federal government, as roughly 40 percent of all U.S. coal production occurs on taxpayer-owned federal land.

However, over time, it has become clear that the decades-old regulations governing the federal coal program have become outdated and do not necessarily reflect modern day market and environmental realities. It is imperative that taxpayers and local communities receive a fair return from any extraction of these publicly owned resources, through a program that is transparent, competitive, and designed to serve the public interest, rather than that of a narrow sub-set of the energy extraction industry.

Given the serious concerns that have been raised about the federal coal program, and the enormous reserves of coal already under lease, the BlueGreen Alliance agrees with the BLM’s decision to institute a pause on new coal leasing on public lands while this review is taking place. Future coal leases should benefit from all of the lessons learned and public comment gathered during the course of this programmatic review process.

Key to our support for this pause is the fact that companies that are already producing coal from existing federal leases have enough coal leased to be able to continue mining operations without interruption during the span of this program review and beyond. A comprehensive review of this broken system is needed. Nevertheless, as part of that review, the BLM should consider provisions to protect communities supported by existing mines.

A Fair Return for a Public Resource

Regulatory gaps that allow coal companies to effectively sell coal to themselves for below market values to avoid paying full royalties, allow massive deductions for the processing and transportation of coal, and create effective royalty rate reductions, amount to a form of federally subsidized corporate welfare benefiting a select few companies to the detriment of American taxpayers who must carry this expense.

Coal companies that sell coal to themselves at intentionally depressed prices in order to mathematically reduce the royalties that would otherwise be payable to the federal government are, in effect, receiving a subsidy by having their production costs lowered and simultaneously depriving the public of a source of useful revenue. In an era already characterized by political unwillingness to grapple with low corporate tax rates and dropping government revenues on the one hand, and a decaying, under-maintained national infrastructure on the other, revenue rightly due from the extraction of public resources must not be left unclaimed. Taxpayers deserve their fair share from any development of coal on public lands.

Ensuring a Just Transition

Powerful economic forces continue to influence a shift in the U.S. energy sector. A combination of factors is forging a new reality where lower natural gas prices, rising coal costs, and the competitive cost of renewable energy sources are driving a shift to clean energy. The new energy technologies coming on-line will create hundreds of thousands of new jobs and will continue to do so in communities across the country. But, as our nation makes this transition, some workers and communities may be impacted.

Coal mines, coal-fired power plants, coal transportation infrastructure, coal handling facilities, and their associated supply and maintenance industries are often the lifeblood of small towns, providing significant employment and contributing to their communities’ tax base. Moving toward clean energy could result in fewer jobs at a local level and a reduction in the tax stream going to local governments, cutting into funding for public schools, hospitals, and infrastructure projects.

Therefore, as the BLM works to capture a fair return for American taxpayers generally, it must also consider that the economic impacts of a reduction in coal usage over the coming years will not be shared equally across the American public. We must consider what authority and opportunities it possesses—having succeeded in capturing a fair return for extracted coal—to ensure that some portion of this increased return is put to use ensuring a just transition for workers, communities, and regional economies. It will be necessary for some workers to obtain new skills and employment and for some communities to redevelop and diversify their economies.

In protecting the interests of the American public, BLM must also seek to protect the interests of those populations that will be disproportionately impacted by the gradual transition away from fossil energy resources. Reform of the federal coal leasing system provides an opportunity to secure a stable source of funding to provide the tools and resources necessary for workers to transition to new jobs, and to diversify local and regional economies.

Consistency with U.S. Climate Change Goals

As a part of this programmatic review, BLM has sought comment as to whether the extraction of fossil resources from federal lands is consistent with U.S. climate goals. With the proper accounting and transparency, the BlueGreen Alliance believes that modernizing the management of public energy resources should and can be in harmony with the need to significantly reduce the nation’s climate emissions. Managing these two areas in concert, first and foremost, requires scientific data to understand what the impacts are, and how they should be environmentally and economically accounted for.

In order to better understand and manage carbon emissions from public lands, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) intends to establish and maintain a public database to account for annual carbon emissions from fossil fuels developed on federal lands. As there is currently no dedicated, official measure of these emissions, the BlueGreen Alliance supports this effort to ensure a transparent process that accounts for costs, which would otherwise be externalized.

Such transparent carbon accounting by the USGS will provide critical information for the public and the federal government to manage carbon emissions as part of the administration’s Climate Action Plan, and to better enable an assessment of the true market value of extracted resources, accounting for all externalized costs.

Conclusion

In summary, we thank the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Department of the Interior for seeking to improve the federal coal leasing system and look forward to continuing to work with your agencies on the eventual implementation of a modernized and improved system built to serve the interests of American communities, workers, taxpayers, and our natural environment.

 

Respectfully,

 

Kim Glas

Executive Director

BlueGreen Alliance

 

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REPORT: 20 for MI: Create Quality Jobs and Reduce Pollution by Reducing Energy Use in Michigan's Schools, Hospitals, and Public Buildings http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/report-20-for-mi Fri, 20 May 2016 07:56:19 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/report-20-for-mi A new proposal by the BlueGreen Alliance shows that reducing energy use in Michigan's schools, hospitals and public buildings by 20 percent will create 24,000 jobs by 2030, save $4.5 billion in energy costs, and 56,000 gigawatts of energy. This proposal recommends the implementation of a comprehensive program to achieve deep levels of energy efficiency in Michigan's schools, hospitals, and other public buildings (also known as the M.U.S.H. sector for Municipal Buildings, Universities, Schools, and Hospitals) as a venue to create quality jobs and reduce carbon pollution.

An aggressive program to reduce energy use in Michigan's schools and hospitals would create good jobs with family -upporting wages and benefits. A school and hospital energy efficiency program could provide jobs for workers vulnerable to layoffs in power plants as well as new workers seeking a stable career in the green economy. In addition, the program can support training and education for existing building staff, engaging custodial staff and other building workers in the energy savings opportunities right at their fingertips. 

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TESTIMONY: BlueGreen Alliance Executive Director Glas Testifies Before the House Small Business Committee http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/testimony-small-business-committee Thu, 12 May 2016 09:59:04 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/testimony-small-business-committee Today, BlueGreen Alliance Executive Director Kimberly Glas testified before the U.S. House Small Business Committee on the growing opportunities for U.S. manufacturers in the energy efficiency, renewable energy, clean transportation, and infrastructure sectors. Glas also made five key policy recommendations to lawmakers to strengthen the continued advancement of U.S. manufacturing. The full text of the testimony is available here 

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TESTIMONY: BlueGreen Alliance Testimony at Pennsylvania House Democratic Policy Hearing on Clean Energy Jobs http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/testimony-pa-house-democratic-policy-hearing-041116 Wed, 13 Apr 2016 14:51:49 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/testimony-pa-house-democratic-policy-hearing-041116 The Pennsylvania House Democratic Policy Committee held a public hearing at the Capitol on the benefit Pennsylvania’s economy could see by implementing clean-energy jobs on April 11. The hearing was co-chaired by Reps. Mary Jo Daley, D-Montgomery, Leanne Krueger-Braneky, D-Delaware, and Steve McCarter, D-Montgomery. The BlueGreen Alliance's Pennsylvania Regional Program Manager Khari Mosley was one of several experts to testify in front of a House Democratic Policy Hearing on clean energy jobs in the state. 

Read his testimony by clicking the link below. 

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POLICY BRIEF: Ensuring Americans Have Access to Clean, Safe Drinking Water http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/policy-brief-safe-water Thu, 10 Mar 2016 09:41:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/policy-brief-safe-water More than 8,000 children in Flint, Michigan, have been exposed to water contaminated by lead and other chemicals because of a decision by officials to change the source of the city’s drinking water. Aging pipes leached lead into the city’s tap water, poisoning residents and likely leading to chronic, irreversible health problems for thousands of young children there. 

Lead levels in drinking water are a continuing threat, not just in Flint, but in communities across the country. Many U.S. cities rely on water pipes that are more than a century old, on average. Every year, there are some 240,000 water main breaks in America, resulting in a loss of about 7 billion gallons of clean drinking water a day—which represents about 12 percent of treated water. This wastes energy, water, and disrupts businesses and communities. Investment in our nation’s water infrastructure is critical to public health, economy and quality of life. It will create thousands of jobs replacing and upgrading water pipes, treatment plants, storage tanks, and installing more sustainable and resilient water systems. These solutions require long-term commitment at all levels of governance, and the urgency.

View the policy brief to view our recommendations.

The audio of the call releasing this policy is available below. 

Flash Required

 

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LETTER: BlueGreen Alliance Letter to Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/letter-bluegreen-alliance-letter-to-michigan-gov-rick-snyder Wed, 13 Jan 2016 06:00:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/letter-bluegreen-alliance-letter-to-michigan-gov-rick-snyder Members of the Michigan BlueGreen Alliance sent a letter to Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder urging for the State Plan to meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan to reduce carbon emissions and bolster the state's economy. The leaders believe identifying the appropriate mix of approaches to reduce carbon emissions in the power sector that meets the state target will also bolster new and emerging sectors of the efficiency and no- and low-carbon emitting energy economy.

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Taking Stock: Opportunities and Challenges in Indiana’s Natural Gas Distribution System http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/taking-stock-opportunities-and-challenges-in-indianas-natural-gas-distribution-system Wed, 30 Sep 2015 13:00:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/taking-stock-opportunities-and-challenges-in-indianas-natural-gas-distribution-system Indiana’s natural gas distribution pipeline system is a network of more than 40,000 miles of pipe that supplies homes, businesses, and communities with energy. In 2013, many of these pipes were reaching the end of their service life. Approximately 30 percent—or more than 12,000 miles—of the state’s existing distribution pipeline was installed in 1969 or earlier, and will be more than 50 years old if still in use in 2020.1 These percentages appear in line with the age of distribution pipes nationwide. 

Residents of Indiana have felt firsthand the impacts of the state’s aging natural gas distribution pipelines. For example, in November of 2002, leaks in a natural gas pipe caused explosions that destroyed three homes and injured at least four people in Lafayette. Years later, in May of 2011, a natural gas pipeline near Rockville exploded and caught fire. While no injuries were reported, 49 homes were evacuated within a one-mile area of the explosion. After the fire, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) indicated the possibility of external corrosion in a Corrective Action Order to the pipeline company. 

As part of a state-focused education and outreach project conducted throughout 2014 and 2015, the BlueGreen Alliance convened stakeholder meetings and public forums to build on existing knowledge and engage frontline gas sector workers, environmental groups, industry, and additional community stakeholders to identify challenges and opportunities facing the network of natural gas distribution pipelines in the state of Indiana. 

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COP21: Statement of Principles http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/cop21-statement-of-principles Sun, 29 Nov 2015 17:36:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/cop21-statement-of-principles The BlueGreen Alliance, representing many of our nation’s biggest and most impactful labor unions, environmental, conservation, and science organizations, has been active at the UNFCCC since 2008 in Bali, and since COP15 in Copenhagen has publicly called upon world leaders to come together to forge an agreement which adheres to the principles of scientific urgency, fairness, and justice. 

COP21 in Paris will be the most consequential of these meetings, and we hope will represent a turning point where the world focuses on serious action to achieve reductions in carbon pollution in line with scientific urgency and to drive investments in our people and communities that improves their livelihood. 

Solving climate change should simultaneously build resilient infrastructure, improve community health and safety, safeguard wildlife, and strengthen and create economic opportunities and sustainability for all citizens. In Paris, we have an opportunity to achieve critical progress towards securing our environmental and economic future. We offer the following five principles that we believe will achieve this comprehensive vision: 

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LETTER: Labor, Environmental Leaders Call for Just Transition Language in Paris Climate Agreement http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/letter-just-transition Tue, 03 Nov 2015 16:00:23 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/letter-just-transition Labor and environmental leaders wrote a letter to U.S. Special Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern to thank him for supporting inclusion of Just Transition language in negotiating text for the eventual Paris agreement, and to strongly encourage him to ensure that language remains operational in the final agreement. Broadly, the leaders expressed a collective desire for action on climate change that builds resilient infrastructure, improves community health and safety, safeguards wildlife, and strengthens and creates economic opportunities and sustainability  for all citizens. 

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LETTER: BlueGreen Alliance Letter to the U.S. International Trade Commission http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/letter-environmental-goods-agreement Mon, 19 Oct 2015 13:13:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/letter-environmental-goods-agreement The BlueGreen Alliance and its 15 labor and environmental partners recognize the importance of fair trade to the proper functioning of the global economy and to meeting the needs of global businesses, workers, and consumers. America’s economy depends in large part on our ability to export domestically manufactured goods to markets around the world. However, we are also deeply concerned about the potential economic and environmental impacts of international trade agreements currently being discussed and negotiated, including the Environmental Goods Agreement (EGA), which is the subject of this investigation. 

Too often, international trade has enabled a global race to the bottom for workers and the erosion of environmental protections. Instead of free trade, which simply removes as many tariff and non-tariff barriers as possible, the United States should be negotiating “fair trade” agreements that improve  quality of life and raise standards protecting workers, consumers, and the environment. 

In the context of the current EGA negotiations, the U.S. Trade Representative has sought to expand the list of environmental goods identified by the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum. However, while some of the goods identified to date are arguably beneficial to the environment, the list has grown to increasingly include a host of goods for which the connection to environmental benefit is at best tangential and, at worst, actively detrimental to the environment. 

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POLICY BRIEF: America’s Energy Transition: A Case Study in the Past and Present of Southwestern Pennsylvania’s Power Sector http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/policy-brief-americas-energy-transition Wed, 30 Sep 2015 13:42:26 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/policy-brief-americas-energy-transition America’s Energy Transition: A Case Study in the Past and Present of Southwestern Pennsylvania’s Power Sector looks back at the Hatfield’s Ferry and Mitchell Power Stations shutdowns in southwestern Pennsylvania and examines the potential to take those lessons and turn them into good policies that can protect workers, build up the local economy, and ensure that no one is left behind in this energy transition. 


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REPORT: Managing the Employment Impact of Energy Transition in Pennsylvania Coal Country http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/report-managing-employment-impact-of-energy-transition-pa Wed, 30 Sep 2015 13:28:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/report-managing-employment-impact-of-energy-transition-pa Managing the Employment Impact of Energy Transition in Pennsylvania Coal Country examines the broader southwest Pennsylvania region and looks at four scenarios on how our energy mix will change over time—including how the EPA’s Clean Power Plan would impact the region. 

"The report shows that we’ll see net job increases in employment in energy by 2030—even in this region,” said Mick Power, membership and campaign coordinator for the US Climate Action Network and author of the report. “Renewable energy and energy efficiency create more jobs than fossil fuels, but there will be a loss in long-term operating and maintenance jobs. We need to make the right policy choices and take the right actions to ensure the jobs created are quality jobs and workers are trained in the skills needed to do them.” 

The report recommends investments in research, taking proactive steps to deal with possible job losses as part of the transition head on and honestly, ensuring that southwest Pennsylvanians obtains funds from existing sources to expand transition programs, and insisting there is a just transition for workers and communities impacted. 


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TESTIMONY: Strong Methane Standards a Win for Economy, Environment http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/testimony-strong-methane-standards-a-win-for-economy-environment Tue, 29 Sep 2015 09:59:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/testimony-strong-methane-standards-a-win-for-economy-environment Members of the BlueGreen Alliance today testified during the EPA’s Pittsburgh hearing, and afterwards held a labor roundtable on proposed standards to reduce methane emissions from the energy sector. Labor and environmental leaders testified in favor of the proposed standards, citing the need to keep workers safe, the opportunity to create quality jobs, and the impact methane has on our environment and climate.

In the testimony, Regional Program Manager Khari Mosley said, "Strong national methane standards are a win for our economy and environment. The BlueGreen Alliance thanks the EPA and the administration for their efforts to curb methane emissions. Doing so is both vital to addressing climate change and creating good jobs for American workers."

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LETTER: BlueGreen Alliance Calls on Congress to Oppose Crude Oil Exports http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/letter-crude-oil-exports Tue, 15 Sep 2015 12:43:57 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/letter-crude-oil-exports The BlueGreen Alliance sent a letter to members of Congress urging them to oppose H.R. 702, a bill that would lift the long-standing ban on crude oil exports, and arguing that lifting the export ban would not only risk undoing recent gains in America’s energy security, but would also threaten jobs, economic security, and the environment.

Instead of exporting pollution and good jobs to other countries, we need to continue to improve safety and health practices in the U.S. oil industry and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Please oppose H.R. 702, a bill to lift the crude oil export ban, because of its harmful impacts on both workers and our environment.

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TESTIMONY: BlueGreen Alliance Testifies to EPA in Support of Fuel Efficiency Standards for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Engines and Vehicles http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/testimony Fri, 07 Aug 2015 09:34:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/testimony BlueGreen Alliance Regional Program Manager, Tom Conway testifies on behalf of the BlueGreen Alliance on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) proposed phase 2 standards for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles. 

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LETTER: Thank you Leader Pelosi for standing up for workers on Fast Track http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/letter Tue, 16 Jun 2015 14:38:39 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/letter The BlueGreen Alliance, on behalf of its 15 million members and supporters from our labor union and environmental organization members, thanks Leader Pelosi for standing up for workers and the environment by voting against fast track and supporting efforts to implement fair deals that will not lead our country on a race to the bottom. 

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INFOGRAPHIC: Communications Infrastructure http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/infographic Mon, 15 Jun 2015 11:16:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/infographic For a lot of America, high-speed broadband Internet is something they just can’t get. A modern communications infrastructure would be a huge benefit to our economy—by creating and sustaining good jobs—and protect our environment—by wasting less energy and water and reducing the pollution that’s driving climate change.

The BlueGreen Alliance and its partners are at the forefront of the discussion of modernizing and repairing our infrastructure systems to create family-sustaining jobs, make our communities safer and healthier and reduce the pollution that’s driving climate change. And, we’re not here alone. Companies, unions, community organizations, leaders in Congress and State Legislatures around the country, and people like you pushing for a resilient and modern infrastructure are all vital to this effort.

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POLICY BRIEF: Communications Infrastructure: Enabling the Clean Energy Economy http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/policy-brief-communications Mon, 18 May 2015 13:48:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/policy-brief-communications From roads that buckle to water pipelines that burst to failing communications systems, America’s outdated and crumbling infrastructure is at the forefront of the challenges we must tackle with the utmost urgency. Our infrastructure serves as the backbone of today’s economic success and provides the path to future growth and innovation.

The BlueGreen Alliance, with its 15 national labor and environmental partners—including the Communications Workers of America (CWA)—launched Repair America, a grassroots campaign to rebuild our nation’s infrastructure to better meet the climate challenges of today and tomorrow, while building a more prosperous, clean economy. Modernizing and extending our broadband network is a critical piece of this effort.

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POLICY PAPER: BlueGreen Alliance on Senate TSCA Reform, S. 697 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/bluegreen-alliance-policy-on-s-697 Wed, 13 May 2015 16:59:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/bluegreen-alliance-policy-on-s-697 Today there are 80,000 chemicals in commerce, yet EPA has limited ability to protect consumers from exposure to harmful chemicals. As Congress confronts reforms to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) and America’s chemical safety policies in both the House and Senate, the BlueGreen Alliance releases its policy statement on the Senate's proposal, S. 697.

Four fundamental concerns keep prevent BlueGreen Alliance from supporting S.697, as amended:
1. The scale of the problem and the scope of S.697
2. The states’ power to protect and preemption of that power
3. Chemicals that EPA declares unsafe will still be legally available
4. New rollbacks to EPA’s ability to regulate new chemicals and uses

“TSCA is a fundamentally flawed law that needs to be reformed to protect workers, families and children from toxic chemicals, but this is not the right way to do it,” said Charlotte Brody, Vice President of Health Initiatives for the BlueGreen Alliance

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POLICY PAPER: The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/policy-paper Mon, 27 Apr 2015 17:35:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/policy-paper We applaud the latest effort at finding a bi-partisan solution to the antiquated and health-damaging current federal law regulating chemicals, we do not support S. 697 because it will not protect workers, families and children from toxic chemicals.

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VIDEO: IBEW Local 275: Powering Michigan's Future http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/video-ibew-local-275-powering-michigans-future Fri, 08 Apr 2016 12:00:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/video-ibew-local-275-powering-michigans-future

Members of IBEW Local 275 worked through the winter on this solar facility in Western Michigan.  

This video is a testimony that solar is working in Michigan and helping to sustain good quality jobs. It highlights how members of the building trades are already doing work in this new, clean economy—from the electricians in the video to plumbers to construction workers. The jobs that are created and sustained in the clean economy should be quality, union jobs.

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FACT SHEET: The Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) Loan Program: A Success Building the Next Generation of Technology in America http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/the-advanced-technology-vehicle-manufacturing-atvm-loan-program-a-success-building-the-next-generation-of-technology-in-america Wed, 25 Mar 2015 04:14:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/the-advanced-technology-vehicle-manufacturing-atvm-loan-program-a-success-building-the-next-generation-of-technology-in-america The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) Loan Program plays a critical role in rebuilding U.S. manufacturing and helps ensure we make the next generation of globally competitive clean transportation technology in America. These public-private  investments to date have created or saved more than 35,000 direct manufacturing jobs.

The program was created as part of the bipartisan 2007 energy bill, and has been successfully implemented across two Administrations. Today advanced manufacturing companies across the country stand to benefit from ATVM loans.

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REPORT: Passenger Rail & Transit Rail Manufacturing in the U.S. http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/report-passenger-rail-transit-rail Fri, 30 Jan 2015 10:04:00 -0500 http://www.bluegreenalliance.org/news/publications/report-passenger-rail-transit-rail Modern transit and passenger rail systems—like our highways and freight rail systems—are critical infrastructure for a prosperous economy and are major generators of jobs and economic growth. They also benefit our environment.

A new report from the Environment Law and Policy Center and the BlueGreen Alliance shows that in addition to these familiar benefits, transit and passenger rail systems also support extensive manufacturing businesses and jobs across the country—both in communities local to and far from the transit systems themselves.

This report—Passenger Rail & Transit Rail Manufacturing in the U.S.—mapped the transit and passenger rail manufacturing footprint and found more than 750 companies in at least 39 states manufacturing components for transit and passenger rail today.

Specifically, we found:

  • 24 facilities manufacturing and assembling rail cars or locomotives for the transit or passenger rail industries;
  • 188 facilities manufacturing major rail components or systems; and
  •  542 additional companies manufacturing sub-component, materials (such as steel, fabric and glass), infrastructure (such as track and signaling), and carrying out repair and remanufacturing for the passenger rail industry, in just two regions. Nationwide the sub-component supply chain is certainly even larger. 

The bottom line is that rail and transit manufacturing support good jobs around the country and are poised to grow. Click the link below to read the full report. 

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