This week, Representative Yvonne Hinson (D-Gainesville) and Senator Audrey Gibson (D-Jacksonville) filed legislation HB1285 and SB1678, establishing the Energy Equity Task Force to recommend appropriate policies for the equitable siting of energy infrastructure throughout the state. The task force will examine strategies to assist minority, underserved, rural, and low-income communities in transitioning to energy efficiency, including energy-efficient appliances, weatherization, and other methods to benefit from lower energy costs. The task force will be made up of frontline-community Florida residents, energy industry liaisons, environmental justice specialists, and experts from environmental-based organizations with guidance from members of the Florida legislature.
Representative Yvonne Hinson issued the following statement:
“The establishment of the Energy Equity Task Force will give multiple perspectives of a just transition for the state of Florida to switch from fossil to renewable energy without harming rural and underserved communities. The goal is to facilitate the development of ideas and generate community engagement to help combat environmental racism and ensure a fair and equitable transition for the state of Florida.”
Senator Audrey Gibson issued the following statement:
“Utility services are a large part of a family’s expenses. It is vitally important that we focus on making sure the necessary tools are in the toolbox and develop strategies to ensure equitable access to affordable energy efficient products such as appropriate equitable placement of solar and other energy sources and resources across the state, in every community. The task force will work on these issues and more to make recommendations to “energy” improve all neighborhoods.”