Candidate Josh Stein on Climate & Energy

In this blog post, we examine the policies and positions of Josh Stein, the Democratic Party candidate running for Governor of North Carolina. Also in this series, we profile Republican candidate Mark Robinson.

Chris Carnevale | July 8, 2024 | Elections, Energy Policy, North Carolina

This post is part of a series examining where 2024 candidates running for public offices in the Southeast stand on key energy and climate issues. Note: The Southern Alliance for Clean Energy does not support or oppose candidates or political parties. Links to reports, candidate websites, and outside sources are provided as citizen education tools.

In this blog post, we examine the policies and positions of Josh Stein, Democratic Party candidate running for Governor of North Carolina. Also in this series, we profile Republican candidate Mark Robinson. Election Day is November 5, 2024.

Josh Stein currently serves as North Carolina’s Attorney General after he was elected statewide in 2016 and re-elected in 2020. Previously, he was a North Carolina state Senator, representing part of Wake County, and as Senior Deputy Attorney General in the North Carolina Department of Justice. Stein grew up in Chapel Hill, graduated from Chapel Hill High School, and earned degrees from Dartmouth College and Harvard University.

Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency

As Attorney General, Stein has taken multiple actions to support renewable energy and energy efficiency, including:

  • Intervening in proceedings at the North Carolina Utilities Commission to promote eliminating climate pollution and hastening coal plant retirement while prioritizing renewable energy, lessening dependence on risky fossil gas, and lowering costs for customers;
  • Joining North Carolina residents in a state Supreme Court case to ensure that homeowners associations cannot unreasonably prohibit residents from using residential solar;
  • Standing up for policies that promote solar at the utility and rooftop scales at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

Climate Change

On his website, Josh Stein states “I will put North Carolina on a path toward carbon neutrality by 2050. I will work to prepare our state for the impacts of climate change and natural disasters by investing in resilient infrastructure. I will continue to lead the transition to a clean energy economy that creates good-paying jobs and keeps our communities healthy and safe.” 

In 2017, Stein said the following to the press after President Trump pulled the United States out of the international Paris climate accord: “Regardless of what happens at the federal executive branch, nothing will stop me from upholding my oath to the North Carolina constitution and its declaration to control and limit pollution of our air and water.  I am encouraged and inspired by the groundswell of support for climate action all across our state and nation. Now is the time to support a clean energy future with good paying jobs, healthier people and a more secure nation.”

Electric Transportation

As Attorney General, Josh Stein intervened in federal court to defend national standards to limit vehicle pollution against legal attacks.

Energy Equity and Energy Burden

As Attorney General, Josh Stein has gotten involved in cases at the North Carolina Utilities Commission to work for lower energy bills. His work has included:

  • Urging the North Carolina Utilities Commission to adopt a long term energy resource plan for Duke Energy that would lower customers’ bills and rely on more clean energy than Duke had proposed.
  • Helping negotiate a settlement with Duke Energy regarding their coal ash clean up projects that is saving customers more than $1 billion dollars 
  • Appealing the Utility Commission’s decision to grant Duke Energy’s rate increase

Stein created the Civil Rights Unit within the state Department of Justice.

High-Risk Energy: Coal, Nuclear, Oil, Gas

As Attorney General, Josh Stein has pushed for reducing harmful pollution from power plants by defending landmark national regulations on carbon and mercury pollution from rollbacks. He also sued the federal government multiple times to prevent offshore oil drilling and related exploration activities off North Carolina’s coast.

Voter Information

Election Day is November 5. Here are important dates and deadlines to consider, from the North Carolina State Board of Elections:

  • Sept. 6, 2024: County boards of elections begin mailing absentee ballots to eligible voters who submitted an absentee ballot request form.
  • Oct. 11, 2024: Voter registration deadline (5 p.m.).*
  • Oct. 17, 2024: In-person early voting begins; same-day registration available.
  • Oct. 29, 2024: Absentee ballot request deadline (5 p.m.).*
  • Nov. 2, 2024: In-person early voting ends (3 p.m.).
  • Nov. 5, 2024: General Election Day.
  • Nov. 5, 2024: Absentee ballot return deadline (7:30 p.m.).*

*Voter registration and absentee voting deadlines are different for military and overseas citizen voters.

Find additional important election information here.


Chris Carnevale
Chris is SACE’s Climate Advocacy Director. Chris joined the SACE staff in 2011 to help with building public understanding and engagement around clean energy solutions to the climate crisis. Chris…
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