Coalition of 25 Diverse Groups Unveils Shared Priorities and Recommendations for Climate Action in 2019

Today, a coalition of 25 organizations – representing youth, low-income, business, public health, environment and others –outlined a platform of policy priorities for Vermont legislators to advance in 2019 on climate change. View the platform here and learn more at 

In a press event at the Vermont State House today, the coalition urged action on several of Gov. Scott’s Climate Action Commission’s recommendations and other policies to help meet Vermont’s statutory greenhouse gas pollution reduction goals. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Doubling the number of low- and moderate-income homes weatherized every year
  • Creating an electric vehicle incentive program, prioritizing low- and middle-income Vermonters, using VW settlement dollars
  • Joining other New England states in requiring progress on our climate commitments

“The science couldn’t be any more clear: Bold action on climate is imperative. VNRC is proud to join a diverse coalition of partners pushing for job-creating, climate mitigation strategies and to ensure Vermont does its part on this pressing issue,” said Johanna Miller, Energy and Climate Action Program Director at the Vermont Natural Resources Council (VNRC).

“With the federal government blocking all efforts to prevent the worst effects of climate change, local action is more important than ever,” said Sandra Levine, Senior Attorney at Conservation Law Foundation. “We need to drastically reduce our climate-damaging emissions, and Vermont lawmakers must take up these urgent priorities to get us there.”

“Vermonters with low incomes suffer the greatest consequences from violent climate events; they live in the most risk prone locations; they are the most negatively impacted by health risks from emissions; and they have the highest energy burdens,” said Karen Lafayette of the Vermont Low Income Advocacy Council (VTLIAC). “We urge the Governor and Vermont policy makers to reduce carbon pollution, to invest in weatherization and transportation options, and protect the most vulnerable Vermonters as we transition to a cleaner energy future.”

“Climate change threatens Vermont’s economy and environment, and failure to act also ignores the powerful job-creating opportunities a bold response could offer. The prospect of a Vermont without a recreational summer and winter economies is now very real,” said Dan Barlow, public policy manager for Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility. “We need leadership at all levels to address climate change, from our business community to our elected officials.”

Our wildlife is at risk, too. “Climate change is the biggest threat facing birds today, and when birds thrive, we all thrive,” said David Mears, executive director of Audubon Vermont. “We must act now to reduce carbon pollution — the Climate Action Plan and Blueprint are important steps in that direction that must be taken by our state’s elected leaders if we are to make any meaningful progress.”

To view the platform of policy priorities for Vermont legislators to advance in 2019 on climate change, click here:

A full list of organizations who have signed onto the Climate Action Plan to date includes:

Audubon Vermont
Capstone Community Action
Cathedral Square Corporation
Champlain Valley Office of Economic Opportunity
Conservation Law Foundation
Downstreet Housing & Community Development
NeighborWorks of Western Vermont – Heat Squad
Renewable Energy Vermont
Rights & Democracy
Sierra Club – Vermont Chapter
The Nature Conservancy
Toxics Actions Center
Vermont Affordable Housing Coalition
Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility
Vermont Climate and Health Alliance
Vermont Conservation Voters
Vermont Interfaith Action
Vermont Interfaith Power and Light
Vermont Low Income Advocacy Council
Vermont Natural Resources Council
Vermont Public Interest Research Group
Vermont Yankee Decommissioning Alliance
Vermont Youth Lobby
Vermonters for a New Economy