The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Melanie Smith Responds to U.S. Congress’ Egregious Debt Ceiling Bill “Compromise”

Following negotiations to avoid reaching the debt “ceiling” of federal spending, US leaders proposed a debt ceiling bill that majorly limits environmental protections and social programs while fast-tracking the completion of the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP). On Thursday night, Congress passed the bill, despite fierce opposition from environmental and frontline leaders. unequivocally condemns the passing of the bill and stands with the Black, Brown, Indigenous, and poor white communities who have, once again, been deemed expendable for the sake of profit and “bipartisanship.” We stand with the people of Appalachia, a region which has consistently been used as a sacrifice zone.

Sadly, the approval of the MVP was far from the only environmental blow to historically marginalized communities: Congress, under the guise of the desperate need to raise the debt limit, took this opportunity to enact their so-called “permitting reform” in a “dirty deal” redux that severely guts NEPA’s environmental oversight of fossil fuel infrastructure projects.

In this moment of grief and reckoning, we will continue to fight to hold Biden accountable on his failed promises to be a climate champion, and we share this statement from our partners at POWHR, on the forefront of the fight to stop the Mountain Valley Pipeline.

Denali Nalamalapu, Communications Director of the Protect Our Water, Heritage, Rights Coalition (POWHR) responded:

“Our global movement to stop the Mountain Valley Pipeline is stronger than ever. While we are outraged and devastated in this unprecedented moment, we will never stop fighting this unfinished, unnecessary, and unwanted project. Our hearts are broken but our bonds are strong.”

On June 8th, people from around the country will gather in front of the White House to demand President Biden stop the Mountain Valley Pipeline.

350 is building a future that's just, prosperous, equitable and safe from the effects of the climate crisis. We're an international movement of ordinary people working to end the age of fossil fuels and build a world of community-led renewable energy for all.