Big Picture: Help Obama Build Our Clean Energy Future

EPA Hearing in Seattle, WA - 5/21/2009

 Thank you to all who made the trip to Seattle!
 Read our Seattle EPA hearing wrap-up.
 Pictures from the Seattle and Arlington EPA hearing.
 Twitter: Follow the play-by-play of the EPA hearings.
Check out our wrap-up for the Arlington EPA hearing.

The beginning of May, the EPA announced that it would hold two hearings on its endangerment finding, that global warming pollution is a threat to public health and welfare. The Sierra Club kicked into gear to demonstrate the outpouring of public support for fast, scientifically-based, and substantial actions on climate change. We turned to our volunteers, coalition partners and staff throughout the country to lead that effort.

A spirited crowd estimated at 2,000 people gathered outside an EPA hearing in Seattle today (5/21/2009), urging the Obama Administration to take action on reducing global warming pollution. Hundreds of children and students joined members of the faith community, health officials, business leaders, environmental leaders, and elected officials including Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels to call upon the administration and congress to address the threat to public health posed by global warming pollution, support real solutions to global warming, create more green jobs and opportunity in the growing clean energy economy and end America's dependence on dirty energy sources like coal. The rally was kicked off by Sierra Club staffer Kathleen Ridihalgh rallying dozens of kids on the stage in a chant -- "Act Now! End Coal!"

In the morning, Washington's Governor Christine Gregoire made a significant announcement to further move our state in her commitment to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions. She signed an executive order that sets a low-carbon fuel standard, reduces traffic and emissions in urban areas, and requires Washington's only coal-fired electricity generating plant -- the TransAlta facility in Centralia -- to comply with the state emissions performance standard usually reserved for new power plants no later than 2025, resulting in at least 50% emissions reductions from the plant. This is an improvement from a stalled piece of legislation that, opposed by the Sierra Club, would have tied our hands in accelerating TransAlta's emission reductions.
~ Kathleen Ridihalgh Sr. Regional Representative - Sierra Club, NW/Alaska Region

Media:

 Seattle Post Globe - EPA public hearing Thursday puts Seattle at center of global warming debate
 Seattlepi.com - Gregoire signs order to reduce greenhouse gases
 L.A. Times - Washington governor orders cutbacks in emissions
 Grist - Citizens in Seattle, fossils in D.C.
 Oregonian - OpEd by Bill Bradbury - EPA needs to hear call for clean energy