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New legislation would charge fees to large corporations responsible for greenhouse gas emissions and use the money to fund environmental justice initiatives and help communities reliant on fossil fuels transition away from them.
The Save Our Future Act, introduced by U.S. Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., and Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, would use those fees to invest $255 billion over 10 years into existing energy affordability, pollution reduction, business development, career training, and tribal assistance programs to further environmental justice in communities that have faced underinvestment. It would also provide checks to low- and middle-income families and $10 billion in block grants to states and tribes to help defray expenses related to climate change.
The bill would invest another roughly $120 billion over 10 years to help communities traditionally reliant on fossil fuels with economic development, infrastructure, environmental remediation and assistance to local and tribal governments. It also would provide five years of wage replacement, health, retirement and education benefits for fossil fuel workers in those communities who lose their jobs.