Peter Bahouth, Executive Director
January 3, 2011
Happy New Year
The last year of climate advocacy could be summed up with the phrase, “there is no hope, but we might be wrong.” Our community has faced up to Copenhagen collapse, Senate failure, unprecedented oil gushers, duplicitous attacks on climate science, seemingly diminishing public concern, a wavering Administration and attacks on the E.P.A.
But just as events seem most dire, we begin to see the green sprouts of hope poking up through cracks in the pavement. I was heartened to read the account in the NY Times of the late Dr. Charles Keeling, a registered Republican, and his meticulous, irrefutable measurements of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Also in the Times, this week’s “most e-mailed” article was a report that the recent cold weather extremes were the result, rather than a repudiation of, atmospheric warming. Maybe we’ll see a change from the usual ambivalent media coverage. Even more inspiring is the commitment of our Network members and the growing numbers of allies. Our collective efforts have never been more cooperative or our resolve more certain. It is also clear that the reality of climate change will continue to erode the resistance and influence of the opposition.
As we start a new year and a new round of efforts to advance policies that would avert climate related devastation and build a clean energy economy, I’d like to repeat a set of principles that our colleague Mike Brune, Director of the Sierra Club listed as essential to our work. In Mike’s words, if we want to achieve success, all of our campaign efforts must:
- Build power
- Cut carbon
- Speak to a set of values for the future
- Engage local issues
- Weaken the opponents to a clean energy future
Seems like a good list of New Year’s resolutions….
Happy New Year everyone, and on behalf of the board and staff of USCAN, thank you for the work you do.