WE ACT for Environmental Justice Issues Statement in Response to the Energy Transition Accelerator Proposed by U.S. Climate Envoy John Kerry

November 11, 2022
Contact: Chris Dobens, chris@weact.org, 718-679-8542


SHARM EL-SHEIKH, EGYPT – This week U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry announced a plan, the Energy Transition Accelerator, that will use funds raised by selling carbon credits to polluters in an effort to fund renewable energy projects in developing countries. In response, WE ACT for Environmental Justice Co-Founder and Executive Director Peggy Shepard issued the following statement at COP27, the 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference:

“People of color and low-income are the most impacted by climate change, despite generating the least amount of emissions that cause it. This has been the case since we started burning fossil fuels more than 150 years ago, and it has gotten progressively worse every year.

We need a global transition from this fossil fuel economy to one that is powered by renewable energy. And this transition must be just and equitable, centering the communities who are burdened with the effects of fossil fuel operations and energy schemes that do little to slow down the warming of the planet and the impacts of climate change. That means prioritizing community-driven solutions for energy justice and equity and investments that advance renewable energy projects, including job creation and ownership opportunities, in the U.S. and abroad.

It does not mean licensing pollution in exchange for funds to build renewable energy projects in these countries, as recommended by Special Envoy John Kerry. Even those who support carbon markets see this as a flawed plan. We urge President Biden to stand firm in his commitment to environmental justice and not enable this pathway for polluters to continue to do harm and undermine the efforts of this administration to equitably transition to a renewable energy economy worldwide.”

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WE ACT for Environmental Justice is a Northern Manhattan membership-based organization whose mission is to build healthy communities by ensuring that people of color and/or low-income residents participate meaningfully in the creation of sound and fair environmental health and protection policies and practices. WE ACT has offices in New York and Washington, D.C. Visit us at weact.org and follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

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