Letter from the Director: Numbers Don’t Lie.

Dear Friends,

Did you know that one in five Americans now live in a city or a state that is legally committed to reaching 100% clean energy in the next few years?

Let that sink in for a moment. There’s been a total sea change of support for climate action across the country. And much of that action is taking place right here in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington DC. Thanks to CCAN supporters like you, we helped pass two transformative clean energy policies just within less than six months. Now, as the new CCAN fiscal year kicks off, I hope you’ll consider making a donation so we can keep fighting for policies that match the urgency of the climate crisis.

Most recently, on April 8th, the Maryland Clean Energy Jobs Act became law. This policy will convert half of the state’s electrical grid to renewable power by 2030 and create a pathway to 100% clean power soon after that. This happened just four months after elected leaders in the District of Columbia passed a local bill mandating 100% renewable electricity by 2032.

Both states are now aligning themselves with the goals set by the world’s top climate scientists to reduce carbon emissions. And CCAN is now building the momentum to pass a strong carbon cap in Virginia, and setting the stage for a groundbreaking clean electricity policy in that state too.

At the federal level this year, we worked with US Senator Chris Van Hollen of Maryland and Congressman Don Beyer of Virginia to re-introduce the Healthy Climate and Family Security Act. We are also working with Representatives Jamie Raskin (MD) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY) to increasingly draw attention to the role of oil companies in historically denying climate change science.

Through all of this, one thing remains clear. As long as President Donald Trump blocks climate action at the federal level, states will continue to have to take the lead, and we are proud to be a part of this exciting movement of state climate action.

The situation, meanwhile, could not be more urgent. Here are some more big numbers for you:

  • 415 ppm: In mid-May, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels reached 415 parts per million, a level never seen in human history.
  • 1 million species: A recent United Nations report stated that 1 million species globally are at risk of extinction, many within the next couple of decades.
  • 11 years: We have 11 years left to cut global greenhouse gas emissions in half.

While we are reading these gloomy headlines, it is important to also acknowledge the positives. New polling shows that Americans are waking up to the climate crisis, with climate change moving higher on their radar for the 2020 election — and candidates are taking notice. Some have already released their climate change strategies, a stark difference from 2016.

No matter what, know that CCAN will continue to push for change and to take back the driver’s seat from utility and oil companies. All of our work would not be possible without your support, so thank you for all that you do for CCAN, our region, and our planet.

Sincerely,

Mike Tidwell