Hey climate heroes! Welcome to The Climate Roundup, where we round up the change, er the news about climate and the environment. As part of the Gen E community, we thank you for making climate action part of everyday life. (Reading this newsletter counts!)

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In Pop Culture:
Jane Fonda

Jane Fonda Champions Climate Action For Every Generation” is the title of this week’s TIME article about her environmental work and leadership. It’s also the title of my dream Gen E collab with this Earth hero. It’s an obvious partnership – Gen E is also about climate action for every generation. We Are All Gen E! Back to reality, Jane is one of five recipients of this year’s TIME Earth Awards, the second of its kind. Her peers include fashion designer Gabriela Hearst, John Kerry who needs no introduction, fellow Climate Reality Leader and OG environmental justice warrior Robert D. Bullard, and Nemonte Nenquimo, a leader on fighting for the rights of Indigenous communities and their lands. If you read just one thing, read Nemonte’s article. 🫡


🏭 Heavy Spending: This week, the Biden administration announced $6B in federal funding spread across 33 different projects aimed at decarbonizing heavy industry verticals such as cement, steel, metals, and glass. These industries contribute a quarter to a third of our country’s emissions, mostly from using coal and gas to achieve the extremely high temperatures their industrial processes require. The goal of the funding is to test new technologies that can ultimately be brought to commercial scale, replacing the old, dirty ways of making things. Some of the projects include: Diego’s Bulleit whiskey, replacing gas-fired boilers with electric ones, two factories in Ohio and Mississippi looking to build the first U.S. ‘green steel’ factories that would run on hydrogen instead of fossil fuels, and Unilever is getting cash to clean up its ice cream manufacturing. Clean ice cream, yum.

💰 But Wait There’s More!: The climate money keeps on flowing, and it’s exciting to see the changes and innovation getting tested in real time across all economic verticals. In a separate program from above, the Department of Energy awarded five recipients $475M in grants specifically aimed at transitioning coal communities into clean energy ones. One example is an $81M award to Rye Development in Kentucky to convert a coal mine into a pumped-hydro storage facility that will store backup energy that can be dispersed when wind or solar aren’t available. A huge benefit of this federal program is that it keeps jobs – that don’t come with a side of black lung – and investment in these local communities, as we move away from fossil fuel activity.

🦋 Wildlife Protections Are Back: It feels like a lot of pro-environment legislation and action is happening right now, and surely it’s not a coincidence as we barrel towards an election. Not much time left to get the good work done. Also it takes frickin years to get things done in government time, so some of these things have been in motion since Biden took office. This week, the Biden administration restored protections for threatened plants and animals – protections that had been weakened by Trump. Like how he made it so that economic factors could trump a decision to list a species as threatened or endangered. Well, now you can’t use that ‘but, money’ excuse any longer. So much attention goes towards emissions-reductions, but we cannot forget about protections for our biodiverse siblings. We need them alive and well for a healthy, balanced planet.

🚢 World’s First GHG TaxThe shipping industry is on track to be the world’s first payers of a global tax on greenhouse gas emissions. The International Maritime Organization, the UN agency that regulates shipping worldwide, expects to begin charging for each ton of emissions spewed by 2027. So far a price per ton has not been agreed upon and has ranged from $2 to $150. It’s a glimpse into one of the levers likely to be put in place to help decarbonize industries across the global economy.

☀️ Very On BrandWalmart’s tagline is ‘Save Money. Live Better’. Their logo is a sun. So maybe it shouldn’t come as a surprise that they’ve been investing heavily in solar energy projects. Most recently, they announced a $73M investment that will add 1GW of clean energy to the grid, including for smaller community solar projects across Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi that will benefit low-income residents. “These projects are expected to expand access to clean energy, drive new tax revenue to communities, create local jobs and in the case of community solar initiatives, offer direct benefits to Walmart’s customers, members and local communities by helping them save money on energy costs.” It also helps Walmart get closer to its goal of being powered by 100% renewable energy by 2035. More than just good PR, this is legit corporate climate action realized. Bravo! 👏

🌊 Not The End: Our country’s future largest off-shore wind farm was approved last week and it will sprout up off the coast of Montauk, NY, aka ‘The End’ (because it’s the easternmost point in the state). Set to be complete in 2026, it will create 800 jobs and power 320K homes in NY! This is a big win-d as offshore wind projects in particular have been hit hard by inflation, interest rates, and supply chain issues, resulting in many cancellations. But New York State was determined to stay on track with its renewable energy plans and allowed the energy companies to rebid their contracts in order to cover their higher costs. And now Montauk’s Sunrise Wind project will indeed be built. And I have a new excuse to go spend some summer days in my fave beach town, chilling out watching the surfers and turbines.

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Environmentally-Friendlier Short-Term Rentals?

Are you the kind of person who would rather stay in a home rental over a hotel while on vacation? If given the choice, would you prefer to stay at a place that prioritizes environmentally-friendly practices – perhaps with all else being equal? I’ll go ahead and assume a yes on that last one. Well if both answers are yes, then here’s an article with resources and tips on how to lighten your environmental impact in a short-term rental situation.