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Volume 14, Issue 9


Dear Edward,

Report releases, launching partnerships and rallying — the team has been tirelessly laboring through September. We’re really excited to share some important updates with you below!

But first, a word about Friday’s severe storms and flooding, which were clearly more signs of climate change impacting us in real time. NYC-EJA was interviewed by several media outlets (included in the "NYC-EJA In The News" section below) about the Mayor’s shocking failure to publicly notify New Yorkers about the dangerous storms on the horizon. Not his staff, not a media release - the Mayor himself had a public safety responsibility to communicate the looming threats faced by our City. New Yorkers pride ourselves on our resilience - there are endless examples of our toughness and grit, but also how we pull together in times of crisis. However, for our vaunted N.Y. resilience to manifest, we need clear communication and information. There’s no excuse not to alert New Yorkers sufficiently - especially following this summer's Smokepacalypse and orange skies alarm bells. There will be more of these severe weather events in the near future - the Mayor and his team must do better. All New Yorkers - and particularly Black and Brown New Yorkers that are disproportionately vulnerable to the ravages of climate change - deserve better.

NYC-EJA & CUNY's NYC Climate Justice Hub

Official Launch!

On September 19th, NYC-EJA and the City University of New York (CUNY) held a launch event in the Skylight Room at the CUNY Graduate Center to announce the NYC Climate Justice Hub. The Hub, funded through the Waverley Street Foundation, is a two-year partnership connecting NYC-EJA and six member organizations - Brooklyn Movement Center, El Puente, GOLES, We Stay/Nos Quedamos, The Point CDC and UPROSE - and their communities to CUNY students, faculty, administration, centers, departments and other resources to advance climate solutions proposed by members' respective frontline communities.

The event kicked off with a press conference and was followed by a panel discussion. New York Attorney General Letitia James headlined the press conference and was joined by New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, We Stay/Nos Quedamos Executive Director Jessica Clemente, GOLES Executive Director Damaris Reyes, El Puente Executive Director Marco Carrión and Waverley Street Foundation Strategy Director Alexandria McBride. At the end of the press conference, Public Advocate Jumaane Williams issued citations to CUNY, NYC-EJA and NYC-EJA Executive Director Eddie Bautista to acknowledge the accomplishments of each recipient.

The panel discussion introduced audience members to the work of the six panelists and their respective organizations and institutions: The Point CDC President and Chief Operating Officer Maria Torres, Brooklyn Movement Center Senior Organizer for Housing and Sustainability Michael Higgins, UPROSE Executive Director Elizabeth Yeampierre, CUNY Assistant Professor in the Social Science Department Ryan Mann-Hamilton (Laguardia Community College), CUNY Associate Professor of Disaster Risk Management, Resilience & Sustainable Development Denise Thompson (John Jay College) and CUNY Lecturer Mariposa Fernandez (Lehman College).

You can watch a recording of the launch here. Passcode: At%77hab

Report on EJ Stakeholders Recommendations to Implement Landmark NYS Climate Law

After over two years of work, NYC-EJA in partnership with research partners Resources for the Future and a variety of academic teams, has released a new report - Prioritizing Justice in New York State Climate Policy: Cleaner Air for Disadvantaged Communities? The report compares policies favored by the NYS Climate Action Council to those championed by environmental justice advocates, with the report’s modeling concluding that the more ambitious, targeted goals offered by the EJ group's recommendations led to greater emissions reductions, indicating that bolder action is needed to effectively reach the goals outlined in the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA). Read the report here and check out RFF’s podcast episode, ft. our Research Analyst Victoria Sanders, here.

Second Set of Rules Proposed for NYC Building Decarbonization Law (Local Law 97)

On September 12th, NYC’s Department of Buildings (DOB) released the much awaited second set of rules to help building owners comply with Local Law 97 of 2019, our landmark climate legislation to decarbonize NYC’s building sector — the largest source of citywide emissions. The Climate Works for All coalition released an initial statement on these proposed rules expressing concerns over DOB's leniency and possible loopholes and continues to work on detailed comments. Public comment can be submitted through October 24th, and DOB will hold a virtual public hearing on the 24th at 11am.

Rallying with FFANYC, CW4A, and ElectrifyNYC!

On September 14th, NYC-EJA rallied at City Hall Park with two coalitions that we are proud leading members of. With Forest For All NYC, alongside a number of elected officials and coalition partners, NYC-EJA's Resiliency Planner Shravanthi Kanekal called for the passage of Intro 1065 which requires a city-wide urban forest masterplan and Intro 1066 which amends the City Charter to include trees in its long-term sustainability planning to protect & care for the Urban Forest. With the Climate Works for All coalition, we rallied with Councilmembers Nurse, De La Rosa, and Sanchez for Intro 1183 which codifies the goal of 100MW of solar systems to be installed on public buildings by 2025 and 150MW to be installed by 2030, prioritizing environmental justice communities and with the use of union labor.

On September 21st, on Zero-Emissions Day, alongside Nos Quedamos, ElectrifyNY coalition members, labor unions, and elected leaders, Assemblymember Dinowitz (D-84) and Assemblymember Septimo (D-81), NYC-EJA held a press conference to call on Governor Hochul to include Assemblymember Dinowitz and Senator Kennedy’s Green Transit, Green Jobs bill (S6089/A6414) in next year’s executive budget. The bill would require all transit agencies within New York State to begin purchasing only zero-emissions buses starting in 2029 and includes several safeguards to protect workers. The group also called for an inclusion of $100 million in next year’s budget to assist transit agencies with this transition. Be sure to tell your lawmaker that you stand with NYC-EJA, workers, and allies by showing your support for Green Transit and Green Jobs - click this link!

Renewable Ravenswood

On September 20th, NYC-EJA co-sponsored the Climate Justice & Energy Democracy event with NAACP-NYCHA, and Rise Light & Power on Roosevelt Island to discuss if the energy sector is up to the task of disrupting and stopping enduring patterns of inequity and profound injustices in our City and State, and operationalizing a Just Transition. The keynote was given by NYC-EJA Executive Director Eddie Bautista and panels moderated by our Energy Planner Daniel Chu and Policy Organizer Celeste Perez.

Cruise Ships: Plug In or Ship Out

NYC-EJA joined Councilmember Aviles, Councilmember Bottcher, Red Hook Initiative, and concerned residents to call for action on Intro 1050. The legislation would condition access to cruise terminals exclusively to cruise operators that agree to connect to a terminal’s shore power system when vessels are at berth and provide a traffic mitigation plan for the duration of their stay. A single diesel-powered docked and idling cruise ship can emit more pollution than 34,000 idling long-haul trucks.

Bronx Transportation Roundtable

In September, NYC-EJA, The Point CDC, and Youth Ministries for Peace and Justice participated in the Bronx Community and Faith Leaders Roundtable hosted by the Commissioner of the NYC Department of Transportation (DOT), Ydanis Rodriguez. DOT shared initiatives, project status updates, and agency goals with attendees. The Commissioner and staff sought insight from community leaders and experts to explore opportunities for collaboration.

City Council Proclamations for Climate Week

On September 19th, City Councilmember Sandy Nurse hosted a Climate Week event at City Hall to celebrate the work of the grassroots and labor climate justice movement. Among other coalitions that were recognized, NY Renews and the Transform Don't Trash coalition were recognized with City Council proclamations. Watch a clip of NYC-EJA's Executive Director Eddie Bautista's remarks here.

NYC-EJA joins The Oedipus Project Response Panel at American Museum of Natural History Climate Week Event

Eddie joins panel - they’re gonna need a bigger boat!

NYC-EJA team with award-winning actor Oscar Issac

For Climate Week, NYC-EJA’s Executive Director Eddie Bautista was honored to participate in The Oedipus Project event co-presented by the Theater of War Productions at the American Museum of Natural History. Eddie joined a panel of climate experts to offer reactions to a dramatic live reading of Sophocles’ Oedipus the King by acclaimed actors, followed by a guided audience-centered conversation about the climate crisis under the Museum’s iconic Blue Whale.


CBS News: Bronxites say their asthma, respiratory illness gets worse during extreme heat (9/5/23)


The City: Building Owners Could Get Two More Years to Comply with Impending Climate Law (9/12/23)


Politico: Research examines community-level air quality improvements from aggressive climate policies (9/13/23)

Resources Magazine: Climate Policy and Environmental Justice in New York, with Victoria Sanders and Molly Robertson (9/19/23)


Morning News: Latina leaders seek to accelerate implementation of solar energy in New York buildings (9/21/23) 

The City: How to Prep NYC for the Next Smoke Apocalypse? (9/21/23) 

City and State: Eric Adams on defense again as extreme weather hits (9/29/23)

The City: City Caught Flat-Footed on Flood as Deluge Dredges Up Past Lessons (9/29/23) 

Crain's NY: Companies jockey on congestion pricing rules with 11th-hour lobbying (9/29/23)

Be sure to check for more exciting news from NYC-EJA about our ongoing work, on our website and in future newsletters! And if you like what you read, please consider making a tax-exempt donation to support our work.


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