•  “Administration needs to step up its game and get the job done,” according to League

    Washington, DC (April 15, 2013) – Today the League of Women Voters of the U.S. (LWVUS) expressed disappointment with the Obama Administration for missing a key deadline to set industrial carbon pollution standards for new power plants.

    “We are concerned and disappointed that the Administration is falling behind in taking the critical steps needed to protect our health and our planet,” said Elisabeth MacNamara, national President of the League. “In this, the first opportunity for real action on power plant pollution since the President’s commitments in his Inaugural speech and State of the Union address, we see that the deadline for administrative action has been missed.”

    The Clean Air Act requires the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set carbon pollution reduction standards for major emitters.  The agency proposed standards for new power plants in 2012 and was required to complete action on the proposed rule by April 13.  These first-ever industrial carbon pollution standards for new power plants would assure that all new plants use modern technology to cut their dangerous carbon pollution in half. 

    “Just last year more than three million public comments were sent to the EPA in favor of limits on industrial carbon pollution from both new and existing power plants. This record number of comments on the EPA proposal reflects strong support for controlling carbon pollution from the American people,” MacNamara said.

    “The Administration needs to step up its game and get the job done,” said MacNamara. She noted that EPA will undoubtedly be sued over this delay, but she also pointed to the larger agenda that needs attention. “While this rule is important, controlling carbon pollution from existing power plants is what needs to be done to fulfill the President’s pledge on climate, protect our health, and save the planet.”

    “The President needs to step in, get the process back on track, and make sure that his Administration fulfills his commitment to control the pollution that is causing climate change,” MacNamara said.

    “The President has said it is our nation’s obligation to take action to slow climate change and he’s committed his Administration to deliver on that obligation,” added MacNamara. “He has the authority to take bold action and we expect him to keep his promise.”

    “U.S. power plants are the nation’s largest carbon polluter, and the largest uncontrolled source of industrial carbon pollution.  We must dramatically slash industrial carbon pollution from these plants – both new and existing power plants -- to stave off the worst impacts of climate change and protect the health and well-being of Americans, concluded MacNamara.”

    Contact: Kelly Ceballos, kceballos@lwv.org

  • Coalition to President Obama and Secretary Kerry: Pipeline is Not in National Interest

    Washington, DC (April 8, 2013) - The “All Risk, No Reward Coalition” launched today as a new national group that will educate the American people on the ‘all risk and no reward’ of TransCanada’s Keystone XL tar sands pipeline and urge President Obama and Secretary Kerry to reject it. The coalition brings together a unique group of national and state organizations, is very focused in its messaging on national interest, and is using paid media in a way that has never been part of the anti-Keystone movement.

    The coalition was up on the major Sunday news shows yesterday with a TV ad (available at www.allrisknoreward.com), which will be on the air again next week and in an additional dozen markets targeting the Democratic base. The coalition will continue to run national and state-based advertising and earned media, including a youth mobilization effort. 

    “With the tar sands oil spill in Arkansas, there’s a growing mountain of evidence of the dangers that would come with a pipeline spanning some of the most sensitive areas of our country.  This coalition is set to educate the American people about the dangerous climate, environmental and political implications of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline,” said Bill Burton, LCV Senior Advisor.

    The Keystone XL tar sands pipeline will run through America, but does not benefit America.  Based on the State Department’s Environmental Impact Statement, the pipeline will create only 35 permanent jobs. It would also put American communities at significant risk of oil spills like the recent tar sands spill in Arkansas. The pipeline will not reduce dependence on Mideast oil because Keystone XL products will likely be exported overseas, including to China and Venezuela.

    Randy Thompson, “The All Risk, No Reward Coalition” Chair officially announced the launch of the coalition with an op-ed in the York News Times, a Nebraska newspaper along the pipeline route. Representative Rush Holt (D-NJ), published a column in The Hill’s Congress Blog about the risks of the Keystone pipeline, as evidenced by the tar sands spill in Arkansas.

    “As a Nebraska landowner on the front lines of the Keystone XL battle, I know firsthand the tremendous risks that Americans would face if President Obama approved the tar sands pipeline,” said All Risk, No Reward Coalition Chair Randy Thompson. “This pipeline is clearly not in our national interest, since American citizens like me would be taking on all of the risk so that Big Oil and foreign countries could get the reward.”

    “Given that the oil carried by Keystone XL would not be mined, refined, or consumed in the United States, why would we accept the transit risk associated with a pipeline project of this magnitude?” said Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ), Ranking Member on the Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources. “Why would we want to expose thousands of towns up and down the United States to the same risks faced so catastrophically in Mayflower?”

    “Nebraska Farmers Union is 100 years old this year,” said Nebraska Farmers Union President John Hansen.  “We shudder to think about the risks our landowners will face for the next 100 years as the result of TransCanada’s dangerous and irresponsible route.  We call on President Obama and the State Department to reject TransCanada’s permit.” 

    "The League opposes the Keystone XL pipeline proposal because it puts enormous and unacceptable risks on the American people," said Toni Larson, Advocacy Chair for the League of Women Voters of the U.S. in her remarks to the press. "It threatens clean water and public health, makes climate change worse, and sends our nation’s energy policy in the wrong direction."     

    The coalition includes the following state and national organizations:

    National Groups:

    -        League of Conservation Voters Education Fund

    -        League of Women Voters

    -        Indigenous Environmental Network

    State Based Organizations:

    -        Bold Nebraska (NE)

    -        Keystone XL Truthforce (OK)

    -        League of Women Voters Nebraska

    -        STOP Tarsands (TX)

    -        Sandhills Beef (NE)

    -        Nebraska Farmers Union

    -        Interfaith Power and Light  (NE)

    -        Dakota Rural Action

    For more information, including an All Risk and No Reward white paper, please visit www.allrisknoreward.com.

    Contact: Rachel Wolf, 202.331.2120

    ###

  • The following remarks were delivered by Toni Larson, LWVUS Advocacy Chair, during a press conference call launching the All Risk No Reward coalition. The League of Women Voters of the U.S. is a member of this coalition that opposes the Keystone XL pipeline.

  • The League joined members of the environment community by sending a letter to the U.S. House of Representatives expressing strong support for H.R. 924. This bill would extend the Investment Tax Credit for offshore wind and encourage investment in the growing industry.

  • For the first time in 4 years the U.S. Senate is expected to pass a federal budget. In order to maintain a good budget, we need your help to reject bad environmental amendments that will put the health and safety of our children and our future at risk.

  • Panaormic photo of Forward on Climate Rally

    This weekend, I gathered with folks from across the country for the largest rally on climate change in U.S. history! The Forward on Climate Rally took place on the National Mall in Washington, DC, and aimed to let the Obama Administration know that there exists strong public support for climate change action.

  • In last night’s State of the Union (SOTU) address, President Obama addressed many crucial issues affecting our country. His remarks touched on some of the League’s priority issues including voting rights, climate change, immigration and gun violence.

  • Forward on Climate logo

    President Obama underscored the urgent need to address climate change in his inaugural address last month and John Kerry called climate change a “life-threatening issue” of national security upon his nomination for Secretary of State.

  • LWV State of the Union Bingo

    Next Tuesday, February 12th, President Obama will deliver his annual State of the Union (SOTU) address, which will outline his key priorities for the year and second term in office. The League will be eagerly tuning in to learn more about how the President plans to tackle our top issues, including money in politics, election reform, climate change, gun safety, and immigration.

  • Spirit of the Islands Key to President Obama’s Legacy on Climate Change

    Honolulu, Hawaii (January 4, 2013) – As President Obama wraps up his family vacation on his native Hawaii, the League of Women Voters sent him back to Washington DC with a reminder that his legacy on climate change will have a great impact on the island state’s future.  In a full-page print ad, which will run on Saturday in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, the group is urging President Obama to set tough standards for new and existing power plants under the Clean Air Act.

    The President has the authority to act now to address these sources of dangerous climate change. A warming planet, according to the recent Pacific Islands Regional Climate Assessment (PIRCA), will impact Hawaii especially hard. The report makes clear that rising sea levels and higher temperatures pose real threats to the natural resources of Hawaii.

    Elisabeth MacNamara, President of the League of Women Voters of the United States said, “Climate change is the greatest environmental threat of our generation, perhaps of all time," said MacNamara. "How we deal with climate change will be our legacy, and it will be the President’s legacy for our children and grandchildren."

    Beppie Shapiro, President, League of Women Voters of Hawaii said, “The President has said, 'We want our children to live in an America that isn't ... threatened by the destructive power of a warming planet.'  He is right.  If we fail to act, rising sea levels, super storms, and droughts will forever change these islands, our nation and the world.”

    The ad is part of a broader push by League of Women Voters for executive action on climate change. The group recently sent a letter to President Obama, which calls for the President to "take the historically necessary step of controlling industrial carbon pollution from new and existing power plants.  Use your existing regulatory authority to make this happen.”

    The letter concludes, “President Obama, if you don’t do it, it won’t get done. If the United States doesn’t lead, the rest of the world cannot follow.”

    Full text and image of the advertisement, which is situated over an image of a lei lying upon a beautiful Hawaiian beach, can be found below.

     Mr. President, your legacy is callingText:

    Mr. President, your legacy is calling.

    The ‘aina is part of our legacy, Mr. President, and yours.  Climate change poses the greatest environmental challenge of our time.  A recent report by the Pacific Islands Regional Climate Assessment (PIRCA) makes clear that the fish in our waters and the wildlife habitats in our highlands are threatened.Climate change endangers our very way of life.

    As you have said, "We want our children to live in an America that isn't ... threatened by the destructive power of a warming planet."  If we fail to act, rising sea levels, super storms, and droughts will forever change these islands, our nation and the world.

    Mr. President, your legacy is our future.  As you return to Washington, please use the authority you have as president to set standards for new and existing power plants under the Clean Air Act and protect our world.  Please do what is pono. 

     

     

    Contact:  Shannon Maurer  (202) 604-2464

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