Ten Leading Environmental, Advocacy Groups Tell EV Start-up: Engage with Unions to Build Clean, Just, and Prosperous Future


Larisa Manescu, larisa.manescu@sierraclub.org

Sunrise Movement, Sierra Club, Greenpeace USA, League of Conservation Voters, Blue-Green Alliance, Center for American Progress, Center for Biological Diversity, Elders Climate Action, Friends of the Earth, and 350.org call for Rivian to meet the moment for climate action and labor justice

WASHINGTON, DC — Ten leading environmental and advocacy groups, including the Sunrise Movement, Sierra Club, Greenpeace, and League of Conservation Voters, released the following joint statement November 9, 2021 calling on electric vehicle start-up Rivian to work with labor leaders to ensure a clean future with good jobs and sound workers’ rights across the automotive industry. Rivian is hurtling towards a blockbuster IPO valued at over $60 billion. 

The organizations reached out to Rivian privately in August requesting to start a dialogue to see how they could work together to advance their shared objectives. After waiting more than two months, with no response, we are releasing the request publicly today.

“Curbing transportation emissions is at the heart of taking meaningful climate action, and electric vehicle start-ups like Rivian are critical to ensuring a clean economy. As organizations that are deeply committed to slashing emissions in the transportation sector, the adoption of electric vehicles will help meet our climate goals while reducing harmful air pollution and protecting public health. 

“Addressing the climate crisis is an opportunity to create millions of good paying jobs and rebuild our communities with jobs that allow families to thrive. Union workers at many major auto manufacturers earn family-sustaining living wages, with quality health care, paid time off, and can count on their workplace safety and civil rights to be better protected. A priority for our movement is ensuring that manufacturing critical to the clean energy economy creates quality jobs where workers have a voice through a union.

“That’s why today, we call on Rivian to engage meaningfully with labor unions and workers to establish a fair, majority sign up process for employees to decide on union representation.

“Labor, the environmental movement, and business can work closer together to meet the challenge of climate change and quality jobs while adding even greater value to companies like Rivian. This is essential to meeting the nation’s climate commitments and building the clean energy future we all need.”

Leaders of ten major national environmental and advocacy organizations are signatories to the statement including:

  • Jason Walsh, Executive Director, BlueGreen Alliance

  • John Podesta, Founder and Chair of the Board, Center for American Progress

  • Kierán Suckling, Executive Director, Center for Biological Diversity

  • Bob Yuhnke, Elders Climate Action

  • Erich Pica, President, Friends of the Earth

  • Annie Leonard, Executive Director, Greenpeace USA

  • Gene Karpinski, President, League of Conservation Voters

  • RamĂłn J. Cruz, President, Sierra Club

  • Varshini Prakash, Executive Director, Sunrise Movement

  • May Boeve, Executive Director, 350.org

About the Sierra Club

The Sierra Club is America’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization, with millions of members and supporters. In addition to protecting every person's right to get outdoors and access the healing power of nature, the Sierra Club works to promote clean energy, safeguard the health of our communities, protect wildlife, and preserve our remaining wild places through grassroots activism, public education, lobbying, and legal action. For more information, visit www.sierraclub.org.