From heartbreak to hope: Why I’m optimistic

Giving Thanks

In a time of so much uncertainty, we’ve made remarkable strides in paving the way for climate progress across the country. In this year alone, Vote Solar secured clean energy access for over 30% of the US population. Yet, when I look back, I’m most grateful to know that we are working with people like you to build a brighter, more resilient tomorrow for those disproportionately harmed by the inequities of our energy system; harms that were exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

We launched our NJ Shines campaign a couple of months ahead of the lockdowns that left upwards of 22 million unemployed. Now, nearly a year later, we have overwhelming public support for clean energy policies that rebuild and sustain communities, particularly communities of color. We expect this landmark equity-focused legislation to be a model for how the country can rebuild better.

Vote Solar drafted the New Jersey Energy Equity Act in deep partnership with a coalition of 20+ environmental justice, faith-based, consumer advocacy, and solar organizations. The bill, now making its way to the General Assembly, will build a stronger recovery through targeted carve-outs for robust community solar and storage programs, pollution reduction, and local job training and placement. 

New Jersey is just one example of the need to design climate solutions that redistribute power to local communities to build durable economic prosperity. We’re also pushing for strong, equity-centered clean energy bills in Illinois and Massachusetts and implementing New York’s Climate Leadership and Protection Act that we helped to pass in 2019.

The other thing I’m grateful for is you. Without your relentless dedication to groundbreaking change, the work simply wouldn’t happen. Your support and activism powers our campaigns and keeps us focused on an equitable clean energy transition.

Thank you to our members and supporters for speaking out for solar rights and just clean energy for all:

  • You sent nearly 57,000 letters to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission when a utility front group threatened solar rights across the country

  • You sent an unprecedented 16,000 to the Florida Public Services urging them to protect long-standing net metering laws

  • You joined 700 activists for Clean Energy Lobby Day in Illinois to make the case for a 100% equitable clean energy future

We’ve got a lot of work to do to transform our energy system into one that empowers everyone. The road ahead won’t be easy. If this year has taught me anything, it’s that, together, we can do things we never thought possible.

DONATE: Together, we can reach 100% clean energy for all. We need you in this fight to help more communities save with solar across the U.S. Your generous contribution will power our work forward. Make a tax-deductible donation to Vote Solar today!

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