California state senators support competing climate bond proposal

By Alex Nieves | 06/18/2024 06:24 AM EDT

Three senators called on Gov. Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders to back a bond that leans more heavily into environmental justice priorities.

Sen. Maria Elena Durazo addresses a gathering.

State Sen. María Elena Durazo (D) was the lead writer of a letter supporting a competing bond proposal. Rich Pedroncell/AP

Three California state senators are backing a $10 billion climate bond developed by environmental and social justice groups as an alternative to a separate spending proposal moving through the Senate, two weeks ahead of a deadline to put bonds on the November ballot.

A letter penned by state Sens. María Elena Durazo, Lola Smallwood-Cuevas and Dave Cortese last week called on Gov. Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders to support a bond that reserves at least 40 percent of its funding for disadvantaged communities most affected by climate change — a concept known as Justice40.

The letter comes as negotiators in the Assembly and Senate are attempting to finalize a bond proposal before the June 27 deadline to qualify for the November ballot.


The environmental coalition proposal varies significantly from a draft $10 billion bond seen by POLITICO and circulated in the Senate late last month, leaning more heavily into environmental justice priorities and eschewing funding for new renewable electricity generation.