Arizonans Launch Effort to Fortify State’s Economy through Clean Air and Energy

Arizona Thrives

Arizonans have launched Arizona Thrives to attract more high-wage jobs and enhance the livability of our communities. More than 60 landmark companies and organizations have joined the Arizona Thrives Alliance to transition from carbon-based fuels to clean energy including Arizona Forward, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona, Chicanos Por La Causa, Cox Communications, Greater Yuma Economic Development, Hensley, Local First Arizona, Lyft, Sundt, as well as Arizona’s three major electric energy providers, municipalities and higher educational institutions.

As a collaborative statewide alliance, Arizona Thrives’ collective goal is to meet or exceed the Clean Air Act quality standards and create a path forward to reduce carbon emissions.

“Imagine a future where the air is clean, we have secure water supplies, communities are livable, and our economy supports dependable, good-paying jobs. Arizona Thrives is moving our state in that direction,” said Pat Graham, interim executive director of Arizona Thrives. “No one entity can do this alone. Arizona Thrives is creating a path forward to reduce emissions that are warming our state and nation and doing so in a way that works for all of Arizona.”

The effort is initially focused on three key strategic priorities to achieve clean air and clean energy goals that are equitable for all Arizonans. In 2020 leading up to the formation of the alliance, Arizona Thrives engaged experts and key stakeholders across sectors and defined a set of possible actions that make sense, are achievable and will work for Arizona.

How We Move

  • More consumer options and incentives that increase adoption of transportation choices that reduce vehicle miles traveled.
  • Leverage public and private investment in a regional and statewide network of charging infrastructure that supports electric vehicles.
  • Transition state and municipal fleets to electric vehicles and incentivize the transition of major employer fleets to electric vehicles.

How We Power Our Economy

  • Pursue shared initiatives that tackle difficult problems and explore new technologies with partners in a transparent and collaborative approach to advance clean energy goals and demonstrate value to the public.
  • Support a statewide plan that identifies responsible energy-siting zones and electrical transmission that allows us to optimize and expedite renewable energy deployment.
  • Encourage policies that reduce costs, save energy and reduce carbon.
  • Support stakeholder collaboration to develop consumer options and incentives for managing peak energy demand.

Where We Live and Work

  • Support consumer education and energy efficiency programs that advance building upgrades, energy star consumer product incentives, and other strategies that offer economic and health benefits, particularly for Arizona’s most vulnerable residents.
  • Support efforts to promote innovative approaches to energy efficiency, increased electrification, construction waste reduction, adaptive reuse of buildings, water conservation, and other policies and programs that reduce carbon emission, protect air quality, and improve building safety.
  • Support state and local investments in nature-based solutions and public health infrastructure that promote multiple benefits, including mitigating carbon emissions and urban heat, water conservation, consumer and pedestrian safety, and improved air quality for all Arizonans.

The rolling short-grass prairie of the San Rafael Ranch and San Rafael Ranch Natural Area located in the San Rafael Valley of southern Arizona, along the border with Mexico. The valley grassland and riparian landscape of the Santa Cruz River remains undeveloped and preserved as the result of a unique project by Arizona State Parks and The Nature Conservancy. PHOTO CREDIT: ©Mark Godfrey/TNC

Incubated by The Nature Conservancy in Arizona, The Alliance is working together to chart a path forward so the transition from carbon-based fuels to clean energy is affordable, reliable and fair. In March 2019, The Nature Conservancy convened a group of respected leaders who care about clean air, clean energy and building a robust economy in Arizona, charging them with an approach that would be inclusive and integrated versus polarizing and divisive.

“Now, more than two years in the making, Arizona Thrives believes there is a convergence of interests that makes now the right time to act: lower cost clean energy, new technology to improve reliability of clean energy, and demand from major companies,” Graham said. “There also is a desire to avoid the high cost in dollars and lives of delayed action.”

Arizona Thrives values equitable solutions.

“Arizona Thrives has the real potential for real change in collectively securing Arizona’s energy future via the diverse perspectives invited to the decisions table – including industry and business, environmentalists, community leaders and forward-thinking individuals,” said Max Gonzales, executive vice president, Chicanos Por La Causa and Leadership Council, Arizona Thrives Alliance.

Major businesses in Arizona have signed on.

“Sundt is proud to join this statewide alliance to help build a thriving economy and healthy environment where current and future generations of Arizonans can prosper. Through its approach to creating and maintaining the built environment, the construction industry can have a significant, positive impact on air quality and carbon emissions while providing good-paying jobs that sustain families,” said Mike Hoover, president and CEO, Sundt Construction.

To see a complete list of the Alliance or to join, visit

Working together, Arizona can attract more high-wage jobs, improve air quality, reduce the impact of heat to improve the livability of communities, increase water security, protect Arizona’s natural beauty, and sustain agriculture and energy independence.

Arizona Thrives initial focus is on “how we power our economy,” “how we move” and “where we live and work.” We believe the most powerful solutions will address a combination of these elements. As an alliance, our collective goal is to meet or exceed the Clean Air Act quality standards and create a path forward to reduce carbon emissions. Visit

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