The ranks of those who support climate and energy action grew by one today when the NAACP approved a historic resolution to work with the National Wildlife Federation to support legislation that curbs global warming pollution. The resolution says they will work with leaders to "ensure that the response to climate change can take a higher ground than business as usual — one that ensures that we capture the real public benefits from the resolution pledges to a new energy economy."Says NWF:
"This is a breakthrough moment on the path to our clean energy future," said John Grant, National Wildlife Federation Board of Directors and CEO of 100 Black Men of Atlanta. "Clean energy is the key that will unlock millions of jobs, and the NAACP's support is vital to ensuring that those jobs help to rebuild urban areas."
"Although everyone feels its effects, the impacts of global warming are disproportionately severe among communities of color," said Marc Littlejohn, manager of Diversity Partnerships, National Wildlife Federation. "We need to protect low-income Americans, who spend a much larger share of income on energy-related expenses. We need to help Americans working in carbon-intensive industries transition to clean energy jobs."
Both NWF and now the NAACP support passage of the American Clean Energy & Security Act, known as ACES. The bill moved through the House last month with considerable fanfare and concessions to industry, but many still believe that the legislation is a real move to stop climate change. If the Senate also approves it, it could land on the President's desk this year, before the international climate negotiations in Copenhagen in December.
It's possible the NAACP is moved to support climate action by recent studies that have found that taking action to transition to a clean energy economy won't be burdensome for lower income Americans and that action will create jobs. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office found that it would cost the average household $175 a year by 2020, while the 20 percent of Americans with the lowest incomes would come out ahead by $40 a year.