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Create Multiple Benefits through Equitable Climate Action

Answer

1. REDUCE ENERGY BILL BURDEN FOR MIAMI-DADE HOUSEHOLDS

Energy burden is defined as spending 6% or more on your income on your monthly electricity bill. Miami's low-income households have an energy burden that is 3x higher than their non-low-income counterparts (ACEEE, 2020). Energy efficiency programs are how we reduce energy burden, and are also the quickest, most cost-effective way to begin to address the climate crisis. They also would undoubtedly assist the almost 61,000 FPL customers who are late on bill payments since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Bring the Solar Energy Loan Fund (SELF) to Miami-Dade County, providing safer financing options to low-income households for home improvements that reduce energy costs.
  • Expand the County's existing weatherization program to include options to relieve energy burden on low-income renters - for example, by targeting multifamily-building owners that would in turn guarantee rental affordability

2. PREPARE & PROTECT OUR COMMUNITIES FROM EXTREME HEAT & FLOODING

Today, Miami-Dade County experiences approximately 77 more days over 90°F than it did in 1970 (Climate Central, 2020). Scientists predict that by 2036, 187 days per year will be over 90°F in Miami-Dade. Our outdoor workers, public transit riders, and households without affordable, accessible air conditioning are disproportionately exposed to the health harms of extreme heat.

  • Research and champion local protections for outdoor workers from extreme heat
  • Launch a program to provide and require residential window screens to reduce indoor heat and mosquito exposure in Miami-Dade County
  • Ensure that heat is included as a hazard in the Miami-Dade County Local Mitigation Strategy to access state BRIC funding
  • Ensure that County septic to sewer programs prioritize assistance for low-income homeowners and renters

3. CHAMPION A JUST TRANSITION TO RENEWABLE ENERGY

Climate justice means that our solutions to the climate crisis must provide multiple benefits to all, and that no subsect of our population should experience disproportionate harm due to the climate crisis. As the climate crisis intensifies, Miami-Dade County’s low-income populations are likely to be disproportionately burdened. We must take bold, swift action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address the climate crisis. Given the economic disparity in our community, it is essential for residents to be a part of the solution development.

  • Develop a 100% renewable framework and policy for Miami-Dade County that is co-created with the public. The framework should address opportunities to create multiple benefits and lower emissions, such as improved public transit, eliminating disproportionate energy burdens, and small business support in our neighborhoods most heavily impacted by inequities.

Primary Partners: Community Leadership on the Environment Advocacy and Resilience (CLEAR) program alumni, Miami Climate Alliance, The Miami Foundation, Florida International University, Florida Clinicians for Climate Action, Sierra Club Miami Group, Florida Rising, University of Miami Abess Center, WeCount!, TAPARI, The Nature Conservancy, Konscious Kontractors, the CLEO Institute, and Earthjustice.