About Beyond Carbon

Beyond Carbon is a nationwide initiative aimed at ending our dependence on fossil fuels and advancing the transition to a 100% clean energy economy. Building off of the success of Beyond Coal, Beyond Carbon provides quality data and research, works with state leaders to advance clean energy policy, and supports grassroots organizations and litigation efforts aimed at putting a halt to the expansion of methane gas plants.

Our Legacy

In 2011, U.S. coal production was hovering around its all-time peak. Opposition to coal was a third rail across the political spectrum, and local efforts opposing coal plants lacked the necessary support to engage effectively. 

Together with the Sierra Club, Bloomberg Philanthropies built Beyond Coal – a groundbreaking national campaign that involved the first comprehensive effort to map and gather data on every coal plant across the country, along with critical information on their economic performance and pollution levels, allowing us to develop a powerful plant-by-plant strategy. Together, we set a concrete goal: closing one-third of the country’s existing coal plants by 2020.

In the years that followed, we won fight after fight, quickly beating our original goal. We started to run into new challenges: the construction of new gas-fired power plants began to undercut our progress on emissions reductions, and the development of clean energy lagged far behind our targets. 

With a new focus, we continued our work, launching the first iteration of Beyond Carbon in 2019 with the goal of finishing the job on coal and beginning to tackle methane gas plants. Since then, we’ve now helped retire more than 71% of all U.S. coal plants, and we’re aiming to close the remaining 30% by the end of the decade. 

That success led us to expand our work globally, first to Europe in 2017 and now across 32 additional countries, including 25 developing countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Meanwhile, Beyond Carbon has helped block nearly one-third of all planned U.S. gas plants and ensured that 20 states and territories now have 100% clean energy laws in place. 

Path to Success

Data and Research:

Fund necessary studies and deliver accurate data and expert analysis to decision makers across state governments, financial institutions, and partner organizations to help advance swift, decisive actions.

Grassroots and Litigation:

Build on the powerful foundation established by grassroots community organizers to advance the transition to clean energy while utilizing the power of the law to protect public health and safeguard the environment.

Policy and Advocacy:

Educate and work with state and local organizations to pass climate and clean energy policies – including 100% clean energy laws, targets and timetables to phase out climate pollution, and implementation of programs to expand low-carbon transit, speed up the deployment of electric vehicles, get pollution out of buildings, and promote low-carbon manufacturing.

Clean Energy Deployment:

Engage with state governments to make the case for new clean energy and push the Energy Regulatory Commission to reform market rules and remove barriers for clean energy.

Coal Refinancing:

Support financial analysis to push for early retirement of coal assets and implement Inflation Reduction Act to ensure effective use of coal transition financing and clean energy tax credits.

Our Partners

Beyond Carbon’s partners include leading U.S. climate organizations such as Sierra Club, Earthjustice, Advanced Energy United, Climate Equity Action Fund and many more. Learn more about our partners and their work.