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#483 How The Illinois Climate and Equitable Jobs Act Was Passed


Andrew Barbeau, he/him, The Accelerate Group, President
Delmar Gillus, he/him, Elevate, Chief Operating Officer
Jack Darin, he/him, Sierra Club Illinois, Director
Celeste Flores,she/hers, Clean Power Lake County, co-chair
Mike Atty, he/him, United Congregation of Metro East, Executive Director

The Illinois Clean Jobs Coalition (ICJC) is made up of more than 200 climate groups, healthcare professionals, environmental justice champions, businesses, community leaders, labor unions, consumer advocates, faith-based and student organizations.

Following ICJC’s central role in the passage of the Future Energy Jobs Act in 2016, the diverse coalition spent more than three years organizing and holding more than 100 “Listen. Lead. Share.” events to gather feedback and policy ideas from residents across Illinois. The work centered around a simple but urgent rallying cry: CEJA can’t wait (CEJA: Climate and Equitable Jobs Act).

The wait ended on September 15, 2021 when Governor JB Pritzker signed into law the most equitable clean energy jobs bill of its kind in the nation: the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act (CEJA).

CEJA is a bold law that will put Illinois on a path to a 100% clean energy future by 2045, protect public health from pollution, provide a just transition for communities historically dependent on dirty fossil fuels, enact tough utility accountability measures, and create jobs and wealth in Illinois’ Black and Brown communities.

Unlike other states which rely on vague “goals” to hopefully reduce carbon emissions, CEJA has both near-term and long-term hard requirements with specific dates to reduce and eventually stop burning dirty fossil fuels altogether.

The wait is over, but our work is not.

In this presentation, you’ll hear from members of the ICJC coalition who will take you on a journey of how organizing led to the historic passage of CEJA.

ASL This event will not have an American Sign Language interpreter.