A technician installs roof-top solar panels on a home in Arizona.
Paul Hughes isn't the kind of guy to sit still for very long. The Maryland resident is helping government and private vehicle fleets in Delaware, New Jersey, and Maryland go solar. He has designed and engineered the installation of six megawatts of solar at a brownfield site in New Jersey, and taught classes on clean energy and energy efficiency to everyone from college students to construction workers across the Mid-Atlantic region.
"Look," says Paul, who volunteers with both the Maryland and Delaware Sierra Club chapters. "We can't be burning any more fossil fuels. We've got to invest in sustainable technologies."
Paul is just one of the millions of Americans who are passionate about seeing our country invest in clean energy and take action to stop climate disruption. Across the country, Sierra Club chapters have already held more than 35 events as part of our 100 Days of Action for Climate and Clean Energy campaign. Activists and volunteers are packing these events aimed at educating, planning, inspiring, and demanding action on clean energy and climate -- particularly from President Obama.
We are seeing an exciting trend: Clean energy keeps growing. For example, wind was the top new energy source to come online in 2012.
Plus, there's this great news: "Renewable-energy capacity in the U.S. almost doubled from 2009 to 2012, helping reduce the nation's carbon-dioxide emissions last year to the lowest since 1994..."
We know the U.S. can lead the world in clean energy. At one Sierra Club 100 Days event in Denver, Colorado, an attendee said, "I am a member of the renewable energy industry…these technologies are the only path to a future [that] has promise for all species in existence." Others at the same event told how they'd been forced to flee their homes when wildfires quickly spread last summer and fall.
At another 100 Days event, in Detroit, residents talked about environmental justice and climate justice for communities plagued with the pollution from fossil fuel industries (just look at 48217 -- the most polluted ZIP code in Michigan due to nearby refineries, a coal plant, and incinerators).
Everywhere, Americans are making the connection. They've seen devastating wildfires, record droughts, Superstorm Sandy, and more. They know we can do better than fossil fuels that emit climate-disrupting, asthma-causing pollution. Clean energy won't overheat the Earth, nor will it require that we blow up our mountains for coal or poison our water with fracking fluids.
We know it's time for President Obama to take serious action on clean energy climate disruption.
That's why tens of thousands of Americans will be coming to Washington, D.C., on Sunday, February 17 for the Forward on Climate rally. We will make our voices heard and to demand climate action from President Obama.
Paul Hughes will be there. His message for the president: "We don't need dirty energy when we can run our cars and other technology off of the sun. Plus, it's profitable! The sun pays."