The following post is from Sara Letourneau, Labor Climate Project Director for the BlueGreen Alliance.
Yesterday in Kalamazoo, we had supporters from the Teamsters, Steelworkers, National Wildlife Federation, Sierra Club, IBEW Local 58, and others at our press event targeting Energy and Commerce Chair Fred Upton. After our event, a few folks stayed to deliver our press release and talk to the staff at Chair Upton’s office. We even recorded a short video for him.
Today, we were in the Virginia Statehouse. It’s a beautiful structure and we were joined by CWA members, Sierra Club, and our very own Michael Williams. After the physical event, we held a tele-press conference for Virginia media. Listen below.
Overall, this tour was simply awesome. Ryan Motel, Lee Geisse and I all had a blast heading from Pittsburgh to Columbus to Dayton to Kalamazoo to Richmond. That’s a lot of driving and we hit some bad weather, but overall the trip has been safe, and most importantly, we’ve been getting the message out to the public and Congressional leaders that we need action now to save thousands of jobs like Ryan’s. Check out some of the press highlights from the trip below:
From E&E News Subscription only:
"Congress must renew the production tax credit," said David Foster, executive director of the BlueGreen Alliance. "The lives of real Americans are being disrupted; jobs are at stake as well as future environmental performance."
From the Alliance Review (OH) Subscription only:
The BlueGreen Alliance made the call Tuesday during a press conference at the Statehouse that featured a Pennsylvania steelworker whose position was furloughed.
"If companies aren't building wind farms because they are not sure what their return on their investment will be, they aren't buying our blades," said Ryan Motel, a member of United Steelworkers Local 2635. He added, "I hope the folks in Congress will see my face, hear my voice and know the people they are hurting because they won't pass this bill creating a tax incentive."
In late August, Gamesa Energy laid off 165 at plants in Ebensburg and Bucks County. It cited dwindling demand for its products in the United States because of the endangered tax credit. Similarly, wind turbine maker Siemens Wind Power on Sept. 18 announced it would lay off more than 600 workers at plants in Iowa and Kansas.
“Embrace this technology or let good jobs like mine die,” Ryan Motel, 26, a laid-off wind industry worker said at a news conference at the Energy Innovation Center in the Lower Hill District on Tuesday. He was part of the BlueGreen Alliance’s kick-off of a four-state tour to gain support for the tax credits.
“I hope the folks in Congress will see my face and hear my voice,” said Motel, of Hastings, Cambria County, who was laid off from his quality inspector job by Gamesa.
Now, you can help us continue to put the pressure on by visiting www.bluegreenalliance.org/saveamericanjobs.Take a few minutes and use the tools there to write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper or contact your members of Congress. We have to get this done for the future of our economy and our enviornment.