Union Members Urge Action on Comprehensive Energy and Climate Legislation

Nearly forty union members from nine states traveled to Capitol Hill to encourage Senators to immediately pass comprehensive climate change and clean energy legislation.

March 24, 2010

Union Members from Nine States Head to Capitol Hill to Urge Senate Action on Legislation to Create Good, Clean Energy Jobs 

WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 24, 2010) Nearly forty union members from nine states traveled to Capitol Hill today to encourage their Senators to immediately pass comprehensive climate change legislation that will create and preserve millions of good jobs building the clean energy economy across the United States.

This comes as Senators Kerry, Graham and Lieberman prepare to release their comprehensive clean energy and climate change proposal. The BlueGreen Alliance is advocating for comprehensive legislation that is focused on creating good, family-sustaining jobs, which will revitalize the manufacturing and construction sectors and immediately put people back to work after the nation lost more than eight million jobs during this recession.

“We are encouraged by the effort of Senators Kerry, Graham and Lieberman,” said David Foster, Executive Director of the BlueGreen Alliance, a national partnership of labor unions and environmental organizations dedicated to expanding the number and quality of jobs in the clean energy economy. “And we are working with them to ensure that creating good jobs in the United States is a central focus of their proposal, as we believe that comprehensive clean energy legislation has the potential to create and preserve millions of jobs across all industries and sectors of our economy.”

“We are on Capitol Hill today to let our senators know that now is the time to create good, clean energy jobs in every community in America,” said Jim Harrison of Detroit, Michigan, president of Local 223, Utility Workers Union of America. “By passing legislation now, we can quickly put people back to work building the clean energy economy of tomorrow.”

The effort, sponsored by the BlueGreen Alliance, will culminate in the premiere Wednesday night of Clean Energy Jobs for a Strong U.S.A., a film by the BlueGreen Alliance and the Natural Resources Defense Council. The film will premiere along with a demonstration of the “Repower Wall” on Wednesday, May 24, at 5:30 p.m. in Dirksen Senate Office Building, Room 562.

“Working people are already building a clean energy economy, whether it’s producing transformers for windmills, like we make in Washington, Missouri, or weatherizing homes, producing cleaner energy, operating cleaner transportation options, or educating the next generation of clean energy workers,” said Gerald Nickelson, a member of IUE-CWA who was profiled in the film.

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The BlueGreen Alliance is a national partnership of labor unions and environmental organizations dedicated to expanding the number and quality of jobs in the green economy. Launched by the Sierra Club and United Steelworkers, the BlueGreen Alliance includes the Communications Workers of America, Natural Resources Defense Council, Service Employees International Union, Laborers’ International Union of North America, Utility Workers Union of America,¬†American Federation of Teachers, Amalgamated Transit Union, and the Sheet Metal Workers’ International Association, uniting more than eight and a half million people in pursuit of good jobs, a clean environment and a green economy.