By Acacia Williams, Dana Johnson, Micah Parkin, and Mary Gilbert
Just over a week ago, climate activists across 17 states campaigned with rallies, meetings, calls, and letters to demand that their elected officials protect the Clean Air Act. The message was clear: represent your constituents, not your corporate donors.
In states such as Colorado, the message was a 'thank you' to climate champions. In Michigan, however, hundreds of people loudly voiced their disappointment with Representative Fred Upton’s recent Dirty Air Act and choice to side with corporate polluters instead of his constituents.
Politicians continue to attack the Clean Air Act on a daily basis as budget fights, science hearings, and consideration of anti-climate bills persist on Capitol Hill. The government is currently only funded for two more weeks, forcing a major budget compromise by March 18th. House GOP leadership is signaling that they are willing to back down on their most egregious anti-climate riders, but Clean Air Act-blocking legislation continues to be considered in the House and Senate with the introduction of the Upton-Inhofe bill.
Over the past few weeks, 1Sky house parties have been popping up faster than electric carcharging stations across the U.S. -- and with about the same amount of energy. This week we're celebrating these fantastic throw-downs for climate organizing.
Last week, a million gallons of oil spilled into the Kalamazoo River in southwest Michigan. My wife grew up on that river. She recalls a childhood watching the ducks, egrets, and fish that populated the river just out her back door. We were married right along the river on a warm day in July fourteen years ago. For us, it was a symbol of the flow and continuity of life. My wife sobbed as we watched the news reports about the spill, knowing it may or may not converge into Lake Michigan and that the clean up is expected to take months.
Within just two weeks in April, the massive risks
fuel reliance to our security, economy and environment were exposed in
tragic disasters in West Virginia and the Gulf of Mexico. The astounding
in Massey Energy’s disregard for safety regulations and BP’s
share information on the extent the Deepwater Horizon leak has
fueled the public outrage at these catastrophes.
By Clean Water Action organizer Jesse Worker. -- Luis
As we stood outside Rep. Mark Schauer's office (MI-7th) in the bright spring sunshine holding signs reading "A storm of support: Thank you for protecting the Clean Air Act" and "Mark Schauer brings clean energy power," I couldn't help but recall my first visit to his office just days before the American Clean Energy and Security (ACES) act vote. Rep. Schauer was a first-term Congressman whom Clean Water Action (my organization in Michigan), had worked hard to get into office based on his strong environmental platform. After a productive discussion of why the ACES bill was so important for Michigan's economic and environmental future, we received a call on the day of the vote from his office assuring us that he would be supporting the bill.