Sierra Club

Currents newsletter

Volume VI, #94
Dec 18, 2007

"Ten years ago, no one would have guessed that long-distance telephone service would be free."

-- Venture capitalist Vinod Khosla, voicing his confidence in American's ability to use advanced biofuel and other technology to cleanly meet our energy needs.

In this issue

1) Take Action: Chill the Drills!
2) Take Action: Celebrate Clean Energy
3) Climate: Global Warming Threatens Water
4) Renewable Energy: Wind Picking Up Strength

1) Take Action: Chill the Drills!
Alaska's Chukchi and Beaufort Seas -- The Polar Bear Seas -- could be opened to oil drilling as soon as February. The seismic testing, boat traffic, and chemicals associated with drilling create a hostile environment for marine mammals like the polar bear. And in the broken sea ice of the Arctic, cleaning up an oil spill would be next to impossible.

At a time when the polar bear is fighting for survival, we can't afford to drill in its home.

Currents action alert arrowChill the drills: Tell Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne to hold off on new drilling while the polar bear is under threat

2) Take Action: Celebrate Clean Energy!
Two weeks ago, the House of Representatives passed an aggressive energy bill that included raising fuel economy standards to 35 mpg by 2020, implementing a national renewable electricity standard (RES) of 15% by 2020, increasing our use of renewable fuels, and providing tax incentives for the production of clean, renewable electricity.

Unfortunately, the Senate stripped out the RES and tax package before passing the bill with a vote of 86-8 and sending it back to the House for a vote that passed 314-100.

Currents action alert arrowFind out how your Representative voted on the initial Energy Independence and Security Act and urge them to support a renewable electricity standard and tax incentives for clean energy initiatives in 2008!

3) Climate: Global Warming Threatens Water
A new report, issued by the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies, has found that increased rainfall and flooding caused by global warming could overwhelm wastewater treatment facilities, leading to more frequent sewage overflows and higher concentrations of Giardia and other diseases in our waters.

The report also predicted lower reservoir levels coupled with an increase in demand for water. Water planners are urged to begin integrating renewable energy sources into their water distribution methods.

Read the report here (pdf). 

4) Renewable Energy: Wind Picking Up Strength
New numbers released by the American Wind Energy Association show that an increasing number of families are buying residential wind turbines for their homes. State incentives and energy savings have prompted over 7,000 people to put up their own wind turbines, and that number is expected to rise above 10,000 in the coming year.

As these families show, we do have the technology and the know-how for everyone to help fight global warming.

Find out how you can be a part of the solution


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