DeSaulnier Effort to Support Workers Transitioning Out of Fossil Fuel Industry Passes House

September 24, 2020
Press Release

Washington, DC – Today, Congressman Mark DeSaulnier (CA-11) announced that an amendment he authored to provide grant funding to communities to help workers transition from jobs in the fossil fuel industry to more sustainable jobs was included as part of the Clean Economy Jobs and Innovation Act (H.R. 4447), which passed the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 220-to-185.

“The time is now for the fossil fuel industry to shift toward more sustainable sources of energy, but they cannot leave thousands of workers jobless in their wake,” said Congressman Mark DeSaulnier. “By bringing community leaders, industry, environmental groups, and the workforce together, like my amendment would do, we can provide these workers with meaningful support to ensure they are not left behind. At home in Contra Costa and around the country, we have the opportunity to set the stage for green jobs that are both worthy of workers skills and help our nation in the much-needed fight against climate change.” 

Specifically, Congressman DeSaulnier’s amendment would provide grant funding for local governments that partner with labor unions, environmental groups, and industry to develop transition plans and apprenticeship programs for the fossil fuel workforce to plan for current or future shifts to more sustainable jobs and industries. Transition plans would be required to include unemployment insurance, job transition training, and community services for the affected community. In practice, a grant like this would help Contra Costa better prepare for the impacts to the local workforce and economy from the recently announced changes at Marathon and Phillips 66.