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Environmental Groups Demand Working Families Be Prioritized In Transition Off Natural Gas

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Environmental groups calling themselves the “communities on the front lines of climate change” rallied on the steps of the state Capitol today to launch the “Regenerate California” campaign.

The campaign, which seeks to strengthen clean energy and phase out the use of fossil fuels, comes after the California Public Utilities Commission announced a new rulemaking process to transition the state away from natural gas.

Environmental advocates praised the rulemaking as timely, given the number of California cities adopting natural gas bans.

Some of those advocates, including the groups Center for Community Action and Environmental Justice, Communities For a Better Environment, the California Environmental Justice Alliance, and the Sierra Club My Generation Campaign, took to Sacramento on Wednesday. 

Ashley Hernandez is with Communities For a Better Environment.

Hernandez: “We are here to ask state leaders and the utilities to work with us and be proactive and intentional, because there's a lot of work to be done in our state. As climate change becomes a more visible threat, such as the case of wildfires, we can't let panic and reactionary thinking lead us towards bad decisions and improper plans that perpetuate inequities and our reliance to fossil fuels.”

The “Regenerate California” campaign calls on state leaders, agencies, and utilities to ensure that any transition away from natural gas prioritizes environmental justice communities and vulnerable workers.

Proponents of natural gas argue that it is an abundant natural resource whose production and consumption creates jobs.

Critics, like the environmental groups that rallied at the Capitol, want to transition to cleaner sources of energy.

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