Stacey Abrams, Daniel Blackman, & Georgia Leaders Demand Bold Climate Action at Atlanta Event, Highlighting Economic Benefits for GA Families

Washington, D.C. – Today, Stacey Abrams, Daniel Blackman, Ashley Renne, Brionté McCorkle, Darian “Big Tigger” Morgan, and Alicia Scott underscored the urgent need for Congress to act on the climate crisis. The event, held at the Georgia Freight Depot, was hosted by Climate Power and Georgia Conservation Voters as part of the Climate Action Now: Great American Build Tour.

During the event, the speakers highlighted how the historic climate investments included in the Build Back Better plan would lower the cost of living for working families and create good-paying clean energy jobs throughout Georgia while fighting pollution that poisons communities and drives dangerous extreme weather. They also noted how the Justice40 initiative would be a game changer for Georgia’s communities of color, who have been disproportionately harmed by the climate crisis and environmental injustice. Georgia is already a leader in clean energy, including solar power, and the investments in clean energy in the Build Back Better agenda would greatly benefit Georgia’s workforce and their families.

Here are some highlights from the event:

  • Stacey Abrams highlighted the job-creating potential of clean energy investments.
    • “The reality is that the environment is not fixing itself, and that wishing does not make it so. We have to act. It is our obligation to take our power and fix our climate and save our world, and that’s why we’re here today.”
    • “This is about jobs. This is about the ability to wake up in the morning and go to work and know that when you come home at night, you’ve made a living wage and you can take care of your family.”
    • “We can’t wait any longer. I’ve been waiting for over 30 years to see us reach this moment. If we claim our power and we do our part, we will invest in a future that sees us and serves us all.”
  • Darian “Big Tigger” Morgan noted that Georgians know hard work and called on Congress to adopt this same mentality. He emphasized that now is the time for Congress to help working people who have been left behind.
    • “It’s time for Congress to adopt some of the ATL spirit and get to work fixing what’s broken. The climate crisis is here and we cannot turn our backs. We need to seize this moment and turn it into opportunity. If there’s one take away from tonight, it’s that now is the time to help families struggling to pay the bills, create new good-paying jobs for people who are ready to get to work, and lift up people who have been long left behind.”
    • “Climate action is community action. It’s action on justice and jobs. And it’s action Georgians need right now.
    • “We expect Congress to be as bold as Atlantans are everyday and it’s time for them to go big — ATL is counting on them. Georgia is counting on them. The American people are counting on them.”
  • Daniel Blackman, an environmental justice and public health advocate, pointed out that Congress has put off action for far too long and that inaction is no longer an option.
    • “[The Build Back Better plan] is a once-in-a-generation type of bill. This can lift people out of poverty, it can help us to fight climate change. This is literally the first generation that can end poverty, but the last generation that can end the climate crisis.”
    • “The main reason that [Congress has] to do it now is that we put it off for so long. […] We’ve been talking about it for a long time, but when you talk without action, you put people in the position that we’re in now.”
    • “If Congress doesn’t make the right decisions now, these cities we love, these areas that we grew up in that we love to vacation in and love to give back to, they may not be there when our kids and our grandkids are trying to enjoy and have those same experiences.”
  • Alicia Scott, the Just Energy Program Manager at Partnership for Southern Equity, emphasized how transformational the Biden Administration’s Justice40 initiative would be for environmental justice communities. 
    • “Forty percent of all of those funds being directed to marginalized Black communities is the first time in history there’s been legislation aimed at restorative justice and environmental justice. So let’s think about that for a minute.”
    • “Never before in the history of the U.S. has anyone ever passed any type of legislation specifically targeting restorative justice for Black communities and historically marginalized communities. This is huge.”
  • Ashley Renne, an environmental activist and sustainability expert, underscored how the climate crisis is already hurting communities and the need for bold, immediate action.
    • “The climate crisis is bankrupting families that can’t afford to fix their homes from floods and fires. It’s hurting all of us. It’s putting people’s lives at risk. Farmers’ crops are wilting. Workers are having to suffer through sweltering temperatures, and kids? Kids are having to fight through diesel fumes just to get to school. That ain’t life.”
    • “Tell your lawmakers — demand your lawmakers — to give you real answers about what they plan to do about this climate crisis. What are they gonna do about it? We need to tell Congress to take real climate action that’s gonna bring jobs and justice to Atlanta, to Georgia, to all over the country.”
    • “It is time for [Congress] to do the right thing by voting for President Biden’s Build Back Better budget.”
You can view the full event here.
Please let us know if you’d like to connect with any of our featured guests:
  • Daniel Blackman
  • Ashley Renne
  • Brionté McCorkle
  • Darian “Big Tigger” Morgan
  • Alicia Scott
Media interested in covering this event can reach out to [email protected] to receive more information.