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Green Purse Alerts!

Why My Purse is Green

Because I believe…

  • the fastest, most effective way to stop polluters is by pressuring them in the marketplace
  • women can be the world’s most powerful economic and environmental force if we intentionally shift our spending to the best green products and services
  • women have the power right now to solve many of our most serious environmental problems by using our green purses to make a difference
  • women must act – intentionally, collectively, and with the full force of our purse power behind us – if we hope to leave our children and grandchildren a better world.
  • November 02, 2012

    I am Voting for Barack Obama because We are Greener than We were Four Years Ago.

    Are we “greener” than we were four years ago?

    Barack_Obama Yes, we are, and Barack Obama deserves a lot of the credit.

     Despite strident anti-environmental opponents on Capitol Hill, President Obama has managed to use the power of his office – deployed primarily through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Department of Energy, and the U.S. Department of the Interior – to make our air and water cleaner, to reduce our reliance on foreign oil, to protect our public lands, and to attack the climate change that causes extreme weather events like Hurricane Sandy.

    Is his job done? Not by a long shot. But are we making progress? Definitely. I’m supporting the President for a second term because I think he offers our best hope in this election to continue to make progress in the future. 

    This all became extremely clear to me earlier this week, as Hurricane Sandy was ripping away part of my roof. While I huddled in my basement listening to the terrifying wind and the torrential rain, I found myself getting mad, not just about what it would cost me to repair the damage, but about the reasons behind this catastrophic storm. Meteorologists, scientists, environmentalists, public health professionals, concerned citizens, and yes, President Obama, have all made the link between burning fossil fuels like coal and oil and extreme weather events like Sandy, let alone Hurricane Katrina and many others. And they’ve tried to throw the weight of their various offices behind solutions that would help wean us from fossil fuels.  

     Meanwhile, conservative forces in Congress and many state houses around the country have blocked legislation that would reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and opposed efforts to increase energy efficiency and the development of renewable energy sources like solar and wind. Bolstered by their conservative colleagues on Capitol Hill and pressured by Tea Party activists, Republican challenger Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, his running mate, have dismissed climate change, have literally said they “love” coal, and would strive to cripple the EPA if they were elected to office.

     Maybe to some people, this is just “talk.” But as someone who has worked in Washington, D.C. to promote environmental protection during the Carter years, the Reagan years, the Bush 1 years, the Clinton years, the Bush 2 years, and now the last four years of the Obama Administration, I can say, and say unequivocally, that environmental policy consistently fares worse under Republican administrations than under Democratic ones. As Sandy has shown, the planet very much faces a climate change tipping point. Obama is on one side, Romney on the other. For me, siding with Obama is a no brainer.

    Has Obama accomplished nearly enough? No.

     Do I wish more change had happened? Of course.

     But we should not let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

    Continue reading "I am Voting for Barack Obama because We are Greener than We were Four Years Ago." »

    March 15, 2012

    "You've Been Trumped" - the Donald Occupies Wilderness

    Is another golf course more valuable than pristine, unique wilderness?

    TrumpedIn Donald Trump's world it is. Trump is in the process of trying to bulldoze one of Britain's very last stretches of wilderness and turn it into not one but two golf courses. You've Been Trumped, a powerful new film shown on opening night of the D.C. Environmental Film Festival, tells the tale from the moment Trump's jet lands in Aberdeen, Scotland with the Donald and his coterie on board, to the sorry affair that exists today: wilderness gone, wildlife habitat destroyed, and the lives of local villagers irreparably harmed by the development.

    Here's the back story, taken from the movie's synopsis: Billionaire Donald Trump has bought up hundreds of acres on the northeast coast of Scotland, best known to movie-lovers as the setting for the 1983 classic film Local Hero. And like the American oil tycoon played by Burt Lancaster, Trump needs to buy out a few more locals to make the deal come true. In a land swimming with golf courses, Trump is going to build two more – along with a 450-room hotel and 1,500 luxury homes. The trouble is, the land he has purchased occupies one of Europe’s most environmentally sensitive stretches of coast, described by one leading scientist as Scotland’s Amazon rain forest. Local residents don't want it destroyed.

     Initially, the project was rejected by the region's government. But mysteriously, the national Scottish Government overturns its own environmental laws to give Trump the green light. Bulldozers spring into action. Water and power are cut off; it takes some homeowners ten days to get the developers to restore these basic amenities. Land disputes erupt while the developers destroy the homeowners' private property. In one mind- boggling incident, bulldozers pile up thousands of tons of dirt next to the homes of private citizens who oppose the project.

    The local police ignore citizens' complaints and instead arrest the film's director, Anthony Baxter. Donald Trump is awarded an honorary doctorate from a local university while his tractors turn wild, untouched dunes into fairways.

    Trumped walterDonald Trump could not appear less sympathetic, especially in this "Occupy" era. He insults local residents like Walter Forbes, right, calling them "pigs" and worse, while claiming his project will bring strong economic growth to this part of Scotland - even though the region is prospering and has less than a 2% unemployment rate. He worries far more about his helmet of hair, which is getting blown about in the wind, than about the women and men whose heritage the development is destroying. He ogles Miss Scotland, who is on hand for a press event, embarrassing her by telling her how pretty she is, as if he has sized her up for a job in one of his casinos.

    It takes a long time for the citizens to mount a community protest against the project. "It's not in their blood," said Anthony Baxter, when he spoke with the audience after the screening. Baxter is appealing to Americans to help raise awareness that will stop further development by helping him get the film into more theaters. He's also posted links on the film's Take Action page that make it easy to tweet the Donald or send a letter to the Scottish minister who approved the project. 

    This being Washington, D.C., the audience offered some additional ideas to Baxter. One person suggested that people write to the Scottish ambassador to the U.S. and urge the project to be shut down. Another suggested Baxter organize and "Occupy Trump Tower" in New York.

    Baxter appreciated the suggestions while warning Washingtonians to beware: Donald Trump has just gotten the contract to redevelop the historic Old Post Office in D.C. It's located on Pennsylvania Ave, right in between the U.S. Capitol building and the White House.

    "You could be Trumped yourselves," he cautioned.

    Don't miss other great films in the D.C. Environmental Film Fest. Env Film Fest logo
    Here's a calendar of showings between now and March 25.




    October 20, 2011

    IMPORTANT! Your Quick Help is Needed to Protect America's Arctic Wilderness

    Polar_bearsThis year, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will make some big decisions about the future of America's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. For the first time, a new management plan for the Arctic Refuge could include a recommendation for Wilderness protection for the Refuge’s critical Coastal Plain – the strongest level of protection  for the Arctic Refuge’s polar bears and natural areas - and the place that that has been in Big Oil’s sights for decades.

    This plan will guide how the Arctic Refuge will be managed for the next 15 years or more. The Obama administration has asked for input from all Americans on this plan.  To make sure the final version includes this important recommendation, we must demonstrate overwhelming support for protecting the Refuge’s Coastal Plain. If we speak with a loud and united voice, we’ll be sending a strong message that the Fish and Wildlife Service can’t ignore.

    The Alaska Wilderness League is working on your behalf to achieve that goal. How? by collecting one million signatures on a letter to U.S. Interior Secretary Salazar in support of protecting America's wilderness in the Arctic Refuge. Can you add your name and help Alaska Wilderness League meet its goal?

    What it means to be an American...

    Alaska wildernessThere are some places in this country that define what it means to be American – the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in northeastern Alaska is one of those places. For the past 50 years our country has remained committed to protecting one of our last wild places. 

    Some places are just too extraordinary to drill, and the Arctic Refuge is one of them.

    A Wilderness recommendation could protect this unparalleled area and the abundant wildlife that depends on it – including polar bears, musk oxen, caribou and millions of birds from around the globe. 

    So please, speak out!

    If we all speak out, we can make sure that the critical Coastal Plain is given the strongest possible protections from Big Oil and harmful development.

    Please take a minute RIGHT NOW and write to Secretary Salazar of the U.S. Department of Interior. He is the one who will recommend to President Obama whether YOUR wilderness in the Arctic Refuge will be protected - or degraded by oil production and development.

    Thank you!


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