Clean energy has been a highly charged issue in legislation, but with Obama’s recent pledge to reduce CO2 emissions 28 percent by 2020, The National Resource Defense Council (NRDC) Action Fund has stepped up with a celebrity campaign to educate consumers about the issue and urge them to email their Senators to pass the Clean Energy Jobs & American Power Act.
Leonardo DiCaprio, a trustee of the NRDC, Chace Crawford, Jason Bateman and Justin Long are among the many stars behind the campaign, driven by viral videos and an extensive social networking initiative, which even includes a Twitter hashtag #thisisourmoment where users can spread the message.
“We’re going to be watching all you senators, very closely,” DiCaprio says, explaining how to flood their email in-boxes via a link on the campaign’s website.
The 28 percent target carbon reduction is well above the 17 percent pledged in the addendum of the Copenhagen Accord, but represents less than a 4 percent reduction over 1990 levels. While that’s well under the percentages that most NGOs are seeking, it’s still a solid step for guiding the Boxer-Kerry bill in the Senate. And in his State of the Union address Wednesday, Obama made it clear that he has finally found a way to explain the importance of clean energy legislation to the American people, and that it’s a key area of focus. No doubt spurred on by the fact that China continues to beat us in the battle for new jobs and spends in excess of $9 billion per day to secure its leadership position in clean energy while our government officials squabble over spare change. At this risk of sounding glib, surely, there must be a better way.
So, between Obama’s push to bring this directive to fruition and Hollywood heavyweights shining a spotlight on this issue in bite-size, consumer-friendly nuggets to generate mass awareness and action, we could be one step closer toward eliminating dependence on foreign oil, reducing carbon pollution and creating green jobs for a sustainable future. To quote the NRDC campaign, ‘this is our moment;’ let’s not squander it.