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2022 legislative recap: virginia democrats won’t budge on combating climate change and protecting the environment

By Blue Virginia

This session, Democrats went big and fought for generational investments in preserving and protecting our environment and funding the fight against climate change. Gov. Youngkin and Republicans attempted to roll back our progress and worsen the ongoing effects of climate change by:


Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative Too Expensive For Virginia, According To Youngkin Report

By Jacob Fenston Photo: Jim Cole , AP Photo

For less than the price of a small, monthly Starbucks latte for each residential power customer, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative promises to cut emissions from power plants by 30% over the next decade, putting the Commonwealth on track to meet its zero-carbon goals by 2045. Additionally, the proceeds go towards mitigating flooding and other impacts of global warming in Virginia.


Attacking climate action is bad policy, even worse politics

By Christopher Leyen Photo: Ned Oliver , Virginia Mercury

A recent report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted that we will see as much sea level rise in just the next three decades that we’ve experienced in the last century. In Hampton Roads, which is already seeing the fastest rate of sea level rise on the East Coast, an extra foot-and-a-half of water by 2050 will completely transform a region already grappling with rising seas.


In Virginia, abandoned coal mines are transformed into solar farms

By Zoeann Murphy

Empty freight cars line the railroad tracks as far as the eye can see from Tim Jennings’s backyard in Dante — a town of less than 600 residents.
“They should open up some more new mines around here,” the 61-year-old former coal miner says, pointing up at the mountains surrounding the valley. “Solar panels — that might work too.”


Experts: climate change impacting Navy base, other national security infrastructure in Hampton Roads

By Ali Weatherton

NORFOLK, Va. — Climate change is a major concern for people around the world and right here in Hampton Roads. Experts say our region is vulnerable to sea-level rise.
On Friday, Hampton Roads leaders along with others called on the U.S. Senate to pass funding to protect our national security infrastructure against climate change.


New Va. AG pulls out of Supreme Court climate case

By Lesley Clark Photo: Steve Helber , AP Photo

Virginia has dropped out of a coalition of states urging the Supreme Court to find that EPA has broad authority to regulate power plant emissions.
Attorney General Jason Miyares (R), who took office over the weekend after Republicans swept the state in November, tweeted last night that he was “proud to announce Virginia is no longer participating in West Virginia v EPA.”

The tweet signaled Miyares’ rejection of his predecessor’s challenge to a lawsuit launched by coal companies and Republican-led states asking the high court to curb EPA’s authority. The Supreme Court last fall made the extraordinary move to take up the case, which focuses on a regulation that does not


Why RGGI is a Good Deal for Virginians

By Mandy Warner

With unprecedented droughts, wildfires, floods and heat waves impacting communities nationwide, it’s clear that climate change is not a threat in some distant future – we’re dealing with its ramifications today. Virginians know this well, having experienced eight different billion-dollar disaster events (three tropical cyclones, four severe storms, and one winter storm) in 2021 alone. Consequently, it’s imperative that we act immediately to address the climate crisis. Virginia took a major step toward doing just that by linking to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) in 2021 – a step Governor Youngkin has, alarmingly, indicated he wants to reverse.


Virginia okays Dominion’s plan to deploy 1.1M smart meters

By Jason Plautz Photo: Mark Florence , Flickr

The Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC) on Friday approved Dominion Energy’s proposal to deploy roughly 1.1 million smart meters as part of a $776 million grid transformation plan. The plan also includes investments in security, customer education and telecommunications.


Groups urge bigger targets, more equity as RGGI states consider changes

By Lisa Prevost

As the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, known as RGGI, undergoes a thorough review by participating states, environmental advocates are demanding more ambitious emission reduction targets and a mandate for equitable distribution of the revenues.


Climate change could make Virginia’s Tangier Island uninhabitable by 2051

By Trishla Ostwal Photo: Patrick Bloodgood , USACE

Virginia’s Tangier Island is rapidly disappearing. Rising sea levels are exacerbating erosion and flooding, and could make the speck of land in the Chesapeake Bay uninhabitable within the next few decades. For years, island residents, policy makers and others have debated whether to attempt to save the island or relocate its small community elsewhere. But time to decide is running out, says David Schulte, a marine biologist with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.