National Wildlife Federation, Union of Concerned Scientists Join BlueGreen Alliance

The National Wildlife Federation and the Union of Concerned Scientists joined the BlueGreen Alliance, growing the ranks of the labor-environmental partnership to 13 million members and supporters.

September 30, 2010

Two of America’s Most Influential Environmental Organizations Join the Ranks of Strategic Partnership Aimed At Creating Good Jobs and Protecting the Environment

WASHINGTON, D.C. (September 30, 2010) The BlueGreen Alliance today announced that two of America’s most influential environmental organizations – the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) and the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) – have joined the fast-growing labor-environmental partnership dedicated to expanding the number and quality of American clean energy jobs.

The National Wildlife Federation is America’s largest conservation organization, working with more than 4 million members, partners and supporters in communities across the country to protect and restore wildlife habitat, confront global warming and connect with nature.”Global warming is the single biggest threat to our wildlife and wild places and this economic downturn continues to threaten communities across our country,” said NWF’s President and CEO Larry Schweiger. “We know that by confronting these problems simultaneously, we can create good jobs, lead the world in the production of cleaner, renewable energy, and protect the environment for the next generation of Americans.”

Founded in 1969, UCS is the leading science-based nonprofit working for a healthy environment and a safer world. It combines independent scientific research and citizen action to develop innovative, practical solutions and to secure responsible changes in government policy, corporate practices, and consumer choices. UCS’s 250,000 members and activists are from all walks of life: parents and businesspeople, biologists and physicists, teachers and students.

“The interests of union members and scientists merge when good jobs build a cleaner, more resilient economy, and we are thrilled to be a part of this unique alliance,” said Kevin Knobloch, president of UCS. “UCS has long recognized that the transition to a clean energy economy will create quality jobs and put Americans back to work. The BlueGreen Alliance is the perfect group to assure that rich potential is realized.”

Leo W. Gerard, international president of the United Steelworkers and a co-founder of the BlueGreen Alliance, and Peter Lehner, executive director of the Natural Resources Defense Council, another BlueGreen Alliance member, said the addition of UCS and NWF will bring new energy to the alliance.

“While the United States sits on the sidelines, other countries like China are taking the lead in the race for clean energy, and creating the jobs along with it,” said Gerard. “The voice of the millions of union members and environmentalists who see clean energy as a critical solution to our environmental, energy and economic challenges grows stronger today with the addition of NWF and UCS.”

“Hunters and anglers from the National Wildlife Federation bring fresh and vital voices to help us counter the polluters and their untold millions of dollars aimed at moving Congress in the wrong direction. And we appreciate the added scientific clout of the Union of Concerned Scientists to counter the distortions and lies of pseudo-scientists and lobbyists who would lock us in a backward-looking energy system,” said Lehner.

Carl Pope, chairman of the Sierra Club and a co-founder of the BlueGreen Alliance, echoed those sentiments.

“The future of our economy and environment depend on our willingness to confront the dangers of global warming and to create good clean energy jobs,” said Pope. “From workers producing clean energy technologies, to scientists studying the effects of climate change, to environmentalists working to preserve our wildlife and wild places, the voice demanding action on clean energy grows stronger every day.”

The BlueGreen Alliance, established in 2006 as a partnership between the United Steelworkers and the Sierra Club, has expanded to include nine major U.S. labor unions and four of America’s largest environmental organizations – now uniting more than 13 million members and supporters – and is dedicated to creating good jobs, a clean environment and a green economy.

“The union members and environmentalists that make up the BlueGreen Alliance know that we no longer have to choose between a clean environment, safe workplaces and good jobs for American workers,” said BlueGreen Alliance Executive Director David Foster. “We can and must have good, safe American jobs that will protect our environment and allow us to leave a sustainable economic and environmental legacy for our children and grandchildren.”