Environmental injustice isn't seasonal, which is why our outreach team based out of Southern California, works tirelessly around the clock to investigate and pursue correction of social and environmental deficiencies.
Locally, nationally and internationally, the Golden State Environmental Justice Alliance is a vocal advocate for citizens negatively impacted by corporate, municipal, social, environmental deficiencies and hazards.
Golden State EJA does its best to promote and foster new opportunites for Southern California's local communities and populations. In doing so, it is our perogative to help with the sustainability of our environment and green careers.
GSEJA believes in the principles stated in the California Government Code (Section 65040.12) which defines Environmental Justice as: “The fair treatment and meaningful participation of people of all races, culture and incomes with respect to the development, adoption, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies.”
Environmental justice policies and laws have been established to ensure that all people, regardless of race, color, national origin or income, have equal protection from environmental hazards where they live, work and play.
All people should have the ability to participate in and influence the decision-making process regarding environmental regulations's outlined in the California General Plan Guidelines. Environmental Justice is a subject that should be addressed in every General Plan either through integration into the seven mandatory elements of the plan, or as an optional element.
As provided by California General Plan law, the Environmental Justice Element should have the same weight as the mandatory elements of the general plan.The Alliance believes all applicable policies should be used when evaluating new development and is dedicated to finding meaningful ways to mitigate the Proposed Project’s Environmental Impacts to the local community, its diverse population and its economy.
No need is too small and no voice is too quiet to be heard. We will devote the time and energy necessary to educate, advocate and ensure all people recieve fair treatment.
In 2020, The U.S. emitted 1,495 million metric tons of carbon dioxide because of electricity production alone. About a fourth of its total emissions. At the same time, electric power remains scarce and expensive for many, forcing millions to struggle to pay for a necessity. Traditional energy consumption is both costly to families and detrimental to the environment. Furthermore, although low-income families would benefit the most from cheaper, alternative energy sources, they often do not have the funds or infrastructure to invest in these sources for their homes.
That's where the Golden State Environmental Justice Alliance and Grid Alternatives come in.
GRID is one of the only non-profit solar power organizations that specifically serve disadvantaged communities. Solar panels reduce costs in the long term but are fiscally inaccessible to many low-income households. By providing equitable access to sustainable solar energy, GRID effectively knocks out two birds with one stone, reducing carbon emissions and helping the marginalized. When a household qualifies, the client receives solar panels at no cost, which allows them to save up to 75% on their electricity bill while also reducing carbon emissions.
Our partnership with GRID has furthered its impact on countless individuals. For instance, many clients need GRID's solar panels, but cannot afford to repair their roofs to support solar panels. GSEJA provides funds to help fix roofs so that these homes can support installation. Additionally, GSEJA's grants help finance GRID's job training, which not only expands their efficiency but also provides experience and employment in communities with low employment. On a more fundamental level, GSEJA has used its resources to provide GRID with more funding to magnify its mission and expand its impact. GSEJA has supplied a total of four grants to GRID so far, allowing them to create partnerships with solar energy companies and acquire funding from the state. The aid empowers GRID to leverage other sources to advance its mission to build a cleaner world and assist those in need.
Mr. Roberto Canchola was one such individual who needed this assistance. Living with his family in Jurupa Valley, Mr. Canchola's electric bill climbed higher and higher each month, replacing the money he needed to provide necessities for his family. Additionally, when he applied for GRID's “Energy For All” program, Mr. Canchola’s roof wasn't able to support solar panels.
GRID now faced nother equity barrier. Since Mr. Canchola couldn't receive the economic benefits of solar panels, he couldn't pay to repair his roof, which was necessary for their implementation in the first place. Once again, the energy would be unable to get to someone who needed it the most.
However, after failing to raise enough funds to repair his roof, Mr. Canchola received the help of GSEJA. Without GSEJA's resources, he wouldn't have been able to install the solar electric system he has today. Mr. Canchola writes the following:
"I'm very grateful for the programs made available for me... Many people still don't believe me that (my solar electric system) was no-cost to me. My electric bill is now very low... My last month electric bill was $22 and this month was just $4! Thank you!"
In the case of Mr. Canchola, we not only provided approximately $12,000 in long-term financial support through lifetime electricity bill savings but also simultaneously reduced 43 tons of greenhouse gas emissions, equivalent to 997 trees. Furthermore, in Mr. Canchola's installation project, GRID recruited underemployed or unemployed individuals, allowing them to benefit from the job training, experience, and income that GSEJA and GRID provided. In this way, our partnership simultaneously supports low-income families, fights climate change, and provides employment opportunities with every household we help.This story is one of many that shows how climate justice and social justice are intertwined. Climate change, income inequality, and unemployment are not isolated issues-their consequences can compound, and their remedies are multifaceted.
With these issues in mind, GSEJA strives to help those in disadvantaged and underserved communities throughout California. We take pride in our continued partnership with GRID Alternatives, in which we are building a greener, equitable, and brighter future for those who live in the Golden State.
Do you have any questions? Please do not hesitate to contact us directly. Our team will come back to you within a matter of hours to help you.
PO BOX 79222 Corona, CA 92879, US