Biden’s Justice40 Plan promises to direct forty percent of federal environmental investments to people in need, potentially directing millions of dollars to disadvantaged communities if executed properly. The Plan itself comes from the White House Environmental Justice Advisory Committee, which recommended investment in national energy efficiency, sustainable and affordable housing, training the national workforce to transition to green energy, and pollution reduction. However, the project can still fail if individual states mismanage the funds directed to them, or if slush-fund projects are prioritized over an active investment in communities in need. Though Green, a journalist, does no offer specific advice, she does note the potential pitfalls of the plan the Biden administration should be wary of: 1) Republican-led states may thwart federal plans for political reasons; 2) the current plan for Justice40 potentially pits communities in need against each other in the screening process for aid; 3) frontline advocates were not consulted in the planning process of Justice40; 4) the ‘forty percent’ part of the plan should serve as a baseline, not a limit for climate justice; and 5) funding may be limited due to a contentious congressional environment.
Miranda Green, “Can Biden’s Justice40 Plan Deliver a Fairer Environment for People of Color?” The Guardian, June 2, 2021.