The first state-led climate jobs coalition, Climate Jobs NY, was created in 2017 by a small group of unions in New York who agreed that the growing climate crisis and the deepening inequality crisis had to be confronted together. The coalition believed that the way forward was to unite unions around the increasing climate crisis and the urgent need to address the growing economic disparity threatening the good middle-class jobs that were made possible by strong unions. People need good jobs, and they need to be safe from the climate crisis.
Built into the CJNY plan to develop a clean energy economy was the need for Just Transition. As coal plants continue to shut down and policymakers vow substantial commitments to shift to renewable energy sources, it is imperative to act proactively and holistically to support the workers and communities that will be impacted by a significant shift to clean energy.
Today Climate Jobs NY continues to be the flagship of the Climate Jobs effort. It now has an executive director and a full-time offshore wind organizer. CJNY recently submitted a plan to Governor Cuomo for investment in energy efficiency and solar installation to help restart the economy and create good jobs. Also, CJNY and CJNRC are planning for a virtual international summit on Climate Jobs and Just transition to be held on September 22, during Climate Week.