Originally published on EcoWatch.com
We have a choice this election – and it starts with the leaders we choose.
That’s the key word here: WE. In the climate movement, we are working every day to drive a shift away from dirty fossil fuels and create a safe and sustainable future for our planet. And together, we have the power to elect strong leaders who can make it a reality.
What’s exciting is that increasingly, it’s not only climate activists who are working for a clean energy future. Read on for proof that people everywhere are getting on board with renewables and other climate solutions. Then, take action to let your leaders know you’re on their side when it comes to focusing on clean energy.
1. Key financial institutions know dirty energy is a bad investment
Large banks and financial institutions are seeing that investment in fossil fuels is risky business. As renewable energy becomes more affordable and pressure builds for the world to reduce carbon emissions, it’s starting to look like the finance industry is wising up. The World Bank Group, along with several other major players, is limiting the funding of new coal power plants to only developing countries with no feasible alternatives. Ca-ching!
2. Large businesses and global brands are going green
Lots of your everyday brands have been making small environmental changes for many years now, but recently, several huge businesses have been embracing clean energy in a big way. Apple gets 93 percent of its energy from renewables, Intel gets 100 percent of its US electricity use from renewables. Kohl’s and Whole Foods receive over 100 percent of their total electricity use from renewables. And many more have announced similar goals – certainly moving our future in the right direction.
3. Faith communities are embracing renewables
Religious communities across the globe – spanning everywhere from the Himalayas to small islands – have also seen the light on renewable energy. Most notable might be the Vatican: last year Pope Francis called for urgent dialogue on global environmental issues, including climate change. When it comes to action, religious groups like Interfaith Power and Light are often on the front lines organizing people of faith by the thousands to support a sustainable future. Amen to that!
3. Youth are driving expansion of clean energy
Young people – they’re maybe the most vocal group in the climate fight, perhaps because they have the most to lose. Student groups have led the charge for more solar powered schools, divestment from fossil fuels, thousands of trees planted, and even a global network of institutions helping one another to advance sustainability in schools. The drive we see from young people today to preserve our planet is reason enough to support leaders who can make a real change for their futures.
4. The tide is turning on public opinion
If all the different groups listed above aren’t proof that people are getting on board with action to create a clean energy future, a 2015 Pew Research survey showed that a majority of people worldwide believe global climate change is a very serious problem. And a whopping 78 percent of respondents support their country limiting greenhouse gas emissions as part of an international accord like the Paris Agreement. We read your message – loud and clear.
Help Make Climate Solutions a Reality
It’s evident people just like you are on board with climate solutions – and our support grows stronger every day. And now it’s time for our leaders to honor and strengthen their commitments to climate action.
Stay tuned next week for more hope: six ways we’re already seeing the benefits of climate solutions in action, thanks to the support of elected leaders worldwide.