We at the Energy Futures Initiative (EFI) share the anger and grief felt by millions of Americans after the recent brutal deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery — and the unjust deaths of many African-Americans before them. EFI supports the demands for justice and change these tragedies have inspired and joins the chorus calling for the end of racial discrimination once and for all.
The project of racial justice in the United States is far from complete. Too often we have ignored, criticized, and marginalized those delivering this message. This must change.
At the same time, COVID-19 has brought disproportionate and often devastating harm to minority communities. The impacts of climate change and other environmental crises likewise impact people of color first and worst. These disproportionate threats must be addressed as part of a national effort to eliminate systemic racial inequality.
EFI was formed three years ago to be a thought leader in clean energy and climate policy. Job creation, energy access, and social justice are central to its mission. The energy transition must address social equity to ensure that neither its benefits nor its costs exacerbate inequality. Lasting solutions to the climate crisis will require integration of environmental and climate justice progress.
Our research shows a lack of diversity broadly in the energy sector. We can and must do better collectively, and that starts by accelerating our own efforts to increase diversity in our EFI structure and operations. This includes substantively increasing our efforts to:
- Reach out proactively to underrepresented minorities in our hiring practices and in our project activities, advisory boards, workshops and peer reviews;
- Further elevate social equity issues in our research and analysis portfolio;
- Implement diversity and inclusion training for all personnel; and
- Engage minority-owned businesses on a regular basis.
EFI’s mission is to advance solutions to the climate challenge through building coalitions, thought leadership, and evidence-based analysis. We are inspired by the groundswell of public support for social justice and equity, are committed to measurable actions that advance positive change, and will continue to raise our voices to actively combat racism and discrimination.
George Floyd’s, Breonna Taylor’s and Ahmaud Arbery’s lives mattered…and so must their deaths.
(Share this post with others.)