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SCOTUS begins issuing new opinions, with another expected related to the power of federal agencies, the battleground state of Wisconsin gets a ruling on alternative voting sites, and coastal work is being done to help salt marshes withstand hurricanes.

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The Supreme Court for now protects access to abortion drug mifepristone, while Senate Republicans block a bill protecting access to in-vitro fertilization. Wisconsin's Supreme Court bans mobile voting sites, and colleges deal with funding cuts as legislatures target diversity programs.

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As summer nears, America's newest and largest international dark sky sanctuary beckons, rural job growth is up, but full recovery remains elusive, rural Americans living in prison towns support a transition, while birth control is more readily available in rural areas.

Ukraine Clean-Energy Plan Emerges as War Starts Year 2

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Wednesday, February 22, 2023   

As the one-year anniversary of the Ukraine war approaches, climate activists are making plans to rebuild Ukraine with clean energy once the war is over.

Groups of elected officials in both countries are holding informal talks about what they describe as a "Clean Energy Marshall Plan" for Ukraine.

Igor Tregub, a Ukrainian-American and Leadership Council member of the nonprofit Elected Officials to Protect America and former Berkeley Land Board Commissioner, said Russia makes $258 million a day in oil-and-gas profits to fuel its war machine.

"There is a clear nexus between divesting from fossil fuels and instead, investing in a democratized renewable-energy supply, such as distributed solar, and wind power," Tregub pointed out.

The group is working with members of Congress on a bill which would help fund Ukraine's reconstruction in a greener, more sustainable way, including doing away with Ukraine's centralized power grid, which has proven to be an easy target for the Russian army. Opponents cited cost concerns.

Alex Cornell du Houx, president of Elected Officials to Protect America, said renewable energy independence can contribute to global stability going forward.

"Right now, we've created a system where there are a number of choke pointed around the world that are controlled by autocratic nations," du Houx explained. "Other countries have no choice but to participate in this form of extortion."

He noted oil and gas companies have used the war in Ukraine as part of their justification for raising prices, which, in turn, has caused pain at the pump and led to higher natural gas bills in California.

Disclosure: Elected Officials to Protect America contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Energy Policy, and Public Lands/Wilderness. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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