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Weekly Address: A Solar Recovery


"As part of the explosion of Recovery Act projects this summer and as a move towards a clean energy future, the President announces nearly $2 billion in conditional commitments to key solar companies."

Rahm-bo: Goal is “comprehensive energy bill” that tackles “carbon pollution”


Earlier today on ABC's "This Week," after blasting BP and its apologists in the Republican Party ("That is a philosophy. That is an approach to what they see. They see the aggrieved party here as BP, not the fishermen."), White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel (alias, "Rahm-bo") had this to say about a comprehensive climate and clean energy bill:
"[Senators meeting at the White House this Wednesday] know the president's perspective...[Obama's] goal now, now that the House passed a bill, is to get the Senate to pass a comprehensive energy bill that reduces our dependence on foreign oil, makes key investments in the areas of alternative energy so America leads in that space, and deals fundamentally with the environmental degradation that happens from carbon pollution."
Sounds good to me, just make it happen Rahm-bo!  

In related news, Joe Lieberman weighs in as well, claiming "there are 50 senators that want to put a price on emitting carbon, 30 against it and 20 members who are undecided." Assuming Lieberman is right, and I must say I'm skeptical, it's time to call those 20 swing Senators and tell them we need climate action now!

President Obama’s Speech: Specificity? Climate Change? Where’s the Beef?


Courtesy of the White House, here are President Obama's remarks, "as prepared for delivery."  My thoughts? The speech talked about the need for clean energy, but no real specifics about how to achieve that. Also, where was the talk about climate change?  How about a cap and/or tax on carbon?  Why the language, "before we allow deepwater drilling to continue," as opposed to "IF we allow deepwater drilling to continue?"  As Populista says, "Huge missed opportunity. Courage would be nice, courage would be calling for a specific, bold plan that the moment deserves." And as NRDC Action Fund tweets, "Obama never shied away from saying we needed healthcare reform... why not climate change?"  The thought I kept having while watching this was, the President has the bully pulpit, but ultimately he can't force the Senate to take action.  And right now, the Senate doesn't appear to be taking action.  Ugh.

With that, here's the President's speech.  Read it and decide for yourself if this was what we needed to hear, 2 months into this unprecedented U.S. oil catastrophe.

Good evening.  As we speak, our nation faces a multitude of challenges.  At home, our top priority is to recover and rebuild from a recession that has touched the lives of nearly every American.  Abroad, our brave men and women in uniform are taking the fight to al Qaeda wherever it exists.  And tonight, I've returned from a trip to the Gulf Coast to speak with you about the battle we're waging against an oil spill that is assaulting our shores and our citizens.

VA Enviros, Veterans Urge Webb and Warner To Vote “No” On...


Earlier today, Virginia environmentalists, veterans, and other activists held a press conference in Richmond, at which they urged Senators Mark Warner and Jim Webb to oppose a wildly misguided piece of legislation by Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK, BP, ExxonMobil), what many of us are calling the "Dirty Air Amendment" (or, alternately, the "Big Oil Bailout" bill).  For more, see the press release from Environment Virginia after the "flip."

100+ Virginia Faith Leaders Urge Senate Action on Climate Change

The following letter is from Virginia Interfaith Power & Light, "a nonprofit advocacy organization dedicated to promoting renewable energy, energy efficiency, and conservation in response to global climate change." It is signed by over 100 Virginia religious leaders "from five religious traditions - Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Unitarian Universalism and seven denominations of Christianity -- and hail from all corners of the Commonwealth." It's great to see this call from spiritual and moral leaders to our elected officials. Now, we need action!
June 2, 2010

Dear Senator Webb/Warner,

As religious leaders from across the Commonwealth, we are writing to express our alarm at the state of environmental stewardship here in Virginia, and nationwide. For us as people of faith, this is an issue of basic fairness and justice; not only because we are called to care for Creation, but because of who will be harmed most by inaction: the poor and voiceless.

Specifically, we would like to see federal climate legislation that includes strong emission reductions, international adaptation assistance, and protections for low-income families.

VoteVets on Oil Spill: “America Needs a New Mission”


Another excellent ad by VoteVets.org. What about this clear, powerful message do opponents of clean energy and climate legislation fail to understand?

Upcoming Event: “How Clean Energy Will Benefit My Business”

This looks like a good event by Repower America, check it out!
Arlington Small Business Roundtable: How Clean Energy Will Benefit My Business

You are cordially invited to attend a gathering of local business leaders in Arlington to discuss the benefits of clean energy. This will be a chance to interact with other businesses in the area, exchange ideas and learn what you can do right now as a business leader. No matter if you own a used bookstore or install solar panels, this breakfast is for you.

A clean energy economy will help Virginia businesses save money and create jobs. This breakfast gathering will highlight how your business can benefit from clean energy and learn how to get more involved regarding clean energy in your community.

When: 7:30 to 8:30 AM, Friday, June 4

Where: Café Assorti (1800 Wilson Boulevard, near the Rosslyn and Court House Metro Stations)

Please let me know if you have any questions. I look forward to hearing from you about this exciting event!

Please RSVP to

chris.janszky@climateprotect.org or 203.253.7213

Thank you,

Chris Jánszky

Virginia Businesses Weigh In For “New Competitive Energy Economy” [UPDATED]

The following press release is from the Commonwealth Business Council for a Competitive Economy, a recently formed group which "unites businesses large and small from across Virginia who support the transition to a clean economy both here and nationally."  The director of CBCCE is Mame Reiley, a DNC "superdelegate" and former director of Mark Warner's "One Virginia" PAC.  

With regard to the clean energy and climate bill introduced earlier today (full text here), Reiley says, "This is a unique opportunity for Congress to pass legislation that will reduce our dependence on oil, decrease carbon emissions and promote a new competitive energy economy. Its impact will be felt for generations to come."  Increasingly, despite reams of disinformation put out there by the fossil fuel industries and their allies, this is a view that is shared by the business community and by the American people. Now, if we could just convince a few Republicans to remove their heads from the sand on this crucial issue...


Signals Critical Progress & Major Gains for Virginia

Alexandria, Virginia - Today, a comprehensive energy and climate legislation was introduced, reflecting months of hard work from Senators John Kerry (D- MA), Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Joseph Lieberman (I-CT). The American Power Act is a major step forward that would reduce United States' dependence on oil and move our country toward a cleaner, more secure energy economy.  

This legislation was introduced on the heels of a letter sent to Majority Leader Harry Reid and the U.S. Senate last week, signed by 175 business leaders around the country.  The letter called on the Senate to get comprehensive energy and climate legislation back on track in order to spur a new energy economy, boost energy independence and decrease carbon emissions.  

New Poll: Public Support for Clean Energy Legislation Is Strong

Courtesy of the Natural Resources Defense Council, this is excellent (albeit not surprising) news.
As Gulf Coast oil catastrophe continues to unfold, the Clean Energy Works campaign released a new poll by the Benenson Strategy Group today showing overwhelming public support for comprehensive clean energy legislation. The poll also found that the public is more likely to blame Congress for the oil spill than lobbyists or corporations. And, comprehensive clean energy legislation is likely to be an important electoral issue.

These findings come as Senators John Kerry and Joe Lieberman are expected to unveil new legislative text for a comprehensive clean energy and climate bill this week.

Among the topline findings of the poll are:

VoteVets.org Defangs the Deniers

On Wednesday night's edition of "The O'Reilly Factor," Bill played a new VoteVets.org ad for guest Dennis Miller. The ad points out that the money we pay to import polluting oil ends up in the hands of terrorists who targets our troops in Iraq & Afghanistan. It closes with a call for clean energy & climate legislation. Watch as Miller, a hardcore conservative & self-described global warming denier, refuses to say one bad word about it: