Climate

Clean Energy Works launches: New grassroots effort unites faith, labor, veterans, environmental, sportsmen, business, youth, farm, and community groups to fight for for clean air, clean water, clean energy job bill

The progressive and clean energy has finished putting together a major effort to fight for clean air, clean water, and clean energy jobs.  I had first reported the first green shoots of this effort at the end of July.  As the Washington Post now reports:

A coalition of environmental, labor, veterans and religious groups formally launched a national lobbying campaign Tuesday aimed at mobilizing grass-roots support for passage of a Senate climate bill this fall.

The group — dubbed Clean Energy Works — marks perhaps the most ambitious effort yet to enact legislation that would cap greenhouse gas emissions linked to global warming. The coalition has enlisted organizers in 28 key states to help build support for a cap-and-trade bill, and is scheduled to launch paid television ads this week. It also plans to bring 100 veterans to Washington this week to lobby, and has held town halls and rallies in several states.

“Public support for clean energy legislation is overwhelming,” said David Di Martino, the group’s spokesman. “Unfortunately, an army of special interests are doing everything they can to block comprehensive energy reform. This campaign will mobilize the voices of those millions of Americans who want to put us back in control of our economy, our security, and the future of our planet.”

Many in the status quo media remain eager to spin even positive stories negatively.  Here is the Politico:

Unions, environmentalists, hunters, farmers, veterans, and religious groups launched a major new campaign on Tuesday to push for congressional action on global warming this year.

The powerful coalition forms as prospects for passing a climate bill have dimmed. The contentious health care debate is expected to take center stage in the Senate through the fall. And the Obama administration has signaled that passing health care reform should take precedence over a climate and energy bill.

Again, I don’t see any evidence that prospects for passing a climate bill have dimmed.  Still the same tough job it always was given the massive disinformation and lobbying campaign from Big Oil and the big corporate polluters.

But now the side of clean air, clean water and clean energy jobs has a major champion to compete with those who don’t want clean air, clean water, and clean energy jobs.  Here is the press release:

The Clean Energy Works campaign launched today, signaling a major new push for a comprehensive clean energy and climate plan that delivers more clean energy jobs, less pollution, and greater national security.  The new coordinated campaign builds on the effort that passed the American Clean Energy & Security Act through the House of Representatives by assembling a broad array of organizations representing more than 12 million Americans.  This unprecedented grassroots coalition includes faith, labor, veterans, environmental, sportsmen, farm, business, youth, and community groups.

“Millions of Americans want more clean energy jobs, less pollution, and greater national security,” said David Di Martino, Clean Energy Works Communications Director.  “We send a billion dollars a day overseas to pay for our oil. It’s time to invest that money here – in secure, renewable energy sources that are made in America, provide jobs for Americans and work for America.”

The Clean Energy Works campaign has deployed grassroots organizers in 28 key states to mobilize the tens of millions of Americans calling for urgent Congressional action on a comprehensive clean energy and climate plan.  The campaign’s many activities at the state and national level include paid television, radio, print, and online advertising; contacting concerned citizens; grassroots organizing online and on the ground; an aggressive earned media campaign; public events; and bringing concerned citizens to Washington to speak to legislators.

“Public support for clean energy legislation is overwhelming,” said Di Martino.  “Unfortunately, an army of special interests and their Washington lobbyists are doing everything they can block comprehensive energy reform.  This campaign will mobilize the voices of those millions of Americans who want to put us back in control of our economy, our security, and the future of our planet.”

The organizations coming together to coordinate under the common campaign have committed to getting comprehensive clean energy legislation passed this Congress and will work with Clean Energy Works to galvanize public and political support for action in Congress.

Alliance for Climate Protection * American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) * American Federation of Teachers, American Hunters and Shooters * American Values Network * Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) * Audubon * Blue Green Alliance * Business Forward * Campus Progress * Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good * Catholics United * Center for American Progress Action Fund * CERES * Chesapeake Climate Action Network * Clean Economy Network * Communications Workers of America * Defenders of Wildlife * Earth Ministry * Earthjustice * Economics for Equity and the Environment * Environment America * Environmental Defense Fund * Faithful America * Federation of Southern Cooperatives/Land Assistance Fund * Green Faith * Green for All * Laborers’ International Union of North America (LiUNA) * League of Conservation Voters * League of Rural Voters * Live Earth * Marianist Environmental Education Center * My Rural America * NAACP * National Security Network * National Wildlife Federation * Natural Resources Defense Council * Ohio Interfaith Power and Light * Progressive Future * Restoring Eden * Service Employees International Union * Sierra Club * Sierra Student Coalition * Southern Energy Network * SustainUS * The Regeneration Project * The Wilderness Society * Truman National Security Project * Union of Concerned Scientists * United Steel Workers of America * Utility Workers Union of America * Veterans and Military Families for Progress * Veterans Green Jobs * VETPAC * Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy * Virginia Interfaith Power and Light * Virginia Organizing Project * VoteVets * Working America * World Wildlife Fund

Yes, CEW includes CAPAF, which supports my work.  So I do have first hand knowledge that this is already a first-rate organization that will make a key contribution to the effort to pass the clean energy jobs bill that will clean the air, protect clean water, and preserve a livable climate while starting to take back control of this country from the greedy corporate polluters.

3 Responses to Clean Energy Works launches: New grassroots effort unites faith, labor, veterans, environmental, sportsmen, business, youth, farm, and community groups to fight for for clean air, clean water, clean energy job bill

  1. Gail says:

    Well, YAY but do they have a website? I can only find cleanenergyworks.org.uk and a bunch of other links that do not appear related.

  2. Jeff Huggins says:

    Bravo, and . . .

    I’m glad to hear about CEW. Bravo! And congrats to CAPAF for being involved in CEW and to CEW for being lucky to have CAPAF and many other great organizations.

    Just a few thoughts . . .

    First, as CEW and involved parties go to work, please keep the following in mind:

    Although I know that organizations and cooperation are key to making things happen, nevertheless, we should realize that normal people all over the political map are probably a bit tired, worn down, and (often) doubtful about things that are mainly done within and by organizations that often don’t manifest themselves in terms of lots of regular people doing concrete things visibly.

    Perhaps that’s not a clear way to put it. Let me try an illustration.

    An organization’s face and feel is “one thing” if you (regular person) mainly interact with it through on-line stuff when it wants you to send an e-mail, call a Senator, or provide a contribution. If an organization tells you (citizen) that it’s lobbying and so forth but you (citizen) don’t actually know anyone there, never see them in the news, and don’t really have any concrete interaction, that can get tiring. After all, there are zillions of organizations out there. And (unfortunately) just as many are trying to prevent progress as are trying to bring progress about. So, if one’s main experience of an organization called “The Super-Duper Organized Lobbying Organization For A Better World” (to give a hypothetical example) is hearing that they have an office in Washington, hearing about their lobbying efforts, and getting a weekly e-mail, that can get very old, even as we know that bona fide efforts in Washington are indeed important.

    In contrast, consider this:

    One day, you see on the news that two million concerned citizens have met and peacefully (but effectively) demonstrated in Washington. You may not know, and may not even care about, the names of the organizations that helped organize the thing, but two million people showed up. That’s visible.

    The next week, you see that EFFECTIVE boycotts of ExxonMobil and of the largest coal company are being called and that millions of people are involved. You see people standing outside of some of the local gas stations with signs, peacefully of course. You realize that enough people are finally involved to actually make a suitable difference, and you read about these things in the media. Again, you may not know or care about the names of the organizations: You know that what matters is that things are happening.

    At this point, I would much rather go out to a local event if ten thousand other people will be there (rather than 53) than be asked to send another e-mail to a representative.

    I guess what I’m saying is that, in my view anyhow, organizations and coalitions need to find a way to make concrete and visible things happen, on a very large scale. And, they need to find a way to engage the media and to actually cause the media to feel the responsibility (that the media SHOULD feel anyhow, but too often don’t) to cover them.

    If big, visible, tangible stuff doesn’t happen, one can get a feeling that organizations just exist in the “ether”, in Washington, to talk to politicians, most of which don’t seem to know the difference between fact and fairy tale anyway.

    I don’t say these things to be negative. I know that such efforts are key. I guess I’m saying them because I have a growing feeling that efforts that are largely on-line, or e-mail oriented, or aimed only at lobbying, aren’t enough and won’t get us there. Nor will nationwide events if they only draw 87 people to each location. (I attended the Stanford edition of one of the big nationwide events a year or two ago, and there were about 50 people in attendance. There were almost more presenters that day than people in the audience! And that was at Stanford, where you might think that students would be concerned with climate change.)

    So, I applaud the effort, but somehow these things have to manifest themselves tangibly in the 3-D physical universe. (Or maybe I’m just an old-fashioned 3-D physical person?)

    On a different note (but also related to the way things are characterized in the media):

    I’m getting tired of the way the media categorize nearly anyone who cares about anything other than stock price as an “environmentalist” (i.e., if you happen to care about the physical universe). Or, people who actually work as being “the unions”. In the media, it seems, groups of people who actually care about the world and who actually work are described with labels that seem to diminish the fact that they are mainly responsible humans with valid, healthy, and necessary concerns. And then, many other people who (I guess?) don’t have those concerns, or don’t do anything about them, are just thought of as regular normal people.

    If the media want to label people, then why don’t they adopt these labels for some groups who can (in reality) be well characterized by them: “PFIS” stands for People For Ignoring Science. And “PFSDFG” stands for People For Selfishly Disregarding Future Generations.

    Be Well,

    Jeff
    P.S. – Sorry, forgot to tell you great post!

  3. Paul says:

    Nice post.

    Gail – http://www.getworking.org/

    Best,

    Paul