Nov 21 • 57M

Wielding the power of law to combat climate change with Earthjustice

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A growing body of knowledge about climate change and potential solutions. This series traverses disciplines, industries, and opinions with hundreds of deep-dive conversations with science, technology, and climate leaders.
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Today's guest is Jill Tauber, Vice President of Litigation for Climate and Energy at Earthjustice

Earthjustice is the premier nonprofit public interest environmental law organization. They wield the power of law and the strength of partnership to protect people's health, preserve magnificent places and wildlife, advance clean energy, and to combat climate change. The work they do is not only extremely important, but also in the thick of relevant topics we’re seeing at the moment. One that comes to mind is permitting. We need to move quickly on building clean infrastructure, but at the same time we need to be mindful of communities where this infrastructure is being built. Community members should have a voice in these projects and we have to build them in a way that’s not harmful to people living around them. This is just one example. 

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In this episode, we cover Jill's journey to doing the work that she does, and we also dig into Earthjustice and their criteria for projects they take on. We cover Jill's views on the role of fossil fuels in the clean energy transition, and of course the Inflation Reduction Act bill permitting, barriers holding us back, changes that could unlock faster progress, and where Earthjustice fits into all of this now and in the future. The earth certainly needs a good lawyer and we’re stoked to have Jill share her journey with us. 

In this episode, we cover: 

  • [3:14] An overview of Earthjustice 

  • [4:18] Jill's background and climate journey 

  • [7:43] How Earthjustice determines which projects to take on

  • [9:34] Jill’s thoughts on the role of fossil fuels 

  • [12:48] Balancing energy stability and reliability as we usher in the clean transition 

  • [20:01] Unintended consequences of regulation 

  • [25:10] Need for better government and developer planning 

  • [30:26] How Earthjustice works with experts to evaluate various projects 

  • [34:23] Example case on a new gas plant in Indiana 

  • [38:39] Jill's thoughts on the IRA 

  • [43:03] Systems level changes that would be impactful to Earthjustice's work

  • [47:03] The role of innovation and technology that will help clean energy win 

  • [49:32] Jill's thoughts on activism

Visit our website for a full transcript of this episode.

Get connected: 
Jason's Twitter
Jill’s Twitter 
Earthjustice Twitter / TikTok
MCJ Podcast / Collective

*You can also reach us via email at info@mcjcollective.com, where we encourage you to share your feedback on episodes and suggestions for future topics or guests.

Episode recorded on October 27, 2022.