Weekly Briefing: CCLers Talk About Power Of Lobbying In Washington
May 10, 2023
The deadline to register for CCL's June conference and lobby day is coming up on May 21. If you've never actually met with your members of Congress before (most people haven't!) then you might enjoy this video filmed by Illinois CCLers, talking about how it feels to lobby and why it makes a difference.
"If you had told me one year ago that I would be in D.C. meeting with multiple congressmen and attending this national convention, I would have simply never believed you," said Cristina Mac Cormac with the Lake County, Illinois, chapter.
For those who have met with and shared their concerns with members of Congress, the impact and purpose of lobby meetings is crystal clear. "You would think that the politicians would lead, but that's not the way politicians work," said Mark Ailes from the Greater Naperville chapter. "Politicians don't lead the wave. They ride the wave. So, it's our job to create the waves for them to ride on."
This is a critical moment to preserve the progress made with clean energy incentives and to push forward with other measures — permitting reform, pricing carbon and healthy forests — to ensure that America meets its climate commitment. Join us in Washington to be part of the team making that happen.
In other news this week:
• Carbon pricing discussion in Budget Committee: The president of the Niskanen Center recently testified before the Senate Budget Committee, telling senators that a border carbon adjustment is “a better alternative energy policy to the current inefficient fossil fuel subsidies.” Check out his testimony or learn more about border carbon adjustments.
• Save our Sequoias Act: Rep. Scott Peters and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy have introduced legislation to give land managers the tools to save the iconic giant sequoia trees and reduce the severity of wildfires that contribute to climate change. CCL supported this legislation when it was first introduced last Congress.
• EPA rules forthcoming: The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to release new rules aimed at reducing emissions from coal- and gas-fired power plants. While regulations can be one helpful tool, they are vulnerable to court challenges or changes from future administrations. Durable legislation can have a more lasting impact, and that’s why we lobby Congress.
Take action this week
If you have a little time: Contact Congress about the Energy Innovation Act. Word on the street is that the Energy Innovation Act will be reintroduced into the House as soon as this month. Let’s make sure Congress hears loud and clear that their constituents already love this carbon pricing legislation! Visit cclusa.org/energy to email your members of Congress today.
If you have more time: Tune in to CCL’s monthly meeting. This Saturday, we will host our May call at 1 p.m. ET / 10 a.m. PT on Zoom. Chapters and individual volunteers will dial in from across the country and the world to get updates about CCL’s recent work, hear from guest speaker Professor Adam Simon, and learn what actions we’ll take this month. Join us!
Featured chapter: CCL WA Bainbridge Island
CCL Bainbridge Island is a chapter of about 250 people in suburban Seattle, Washington, led by Ted Larson-Freeman (pictured above, center), Sandy Spears, and Mike Kelly. The chapter’s Earth Day outreach got a special boost from their member of Congress, Rep. Derek Kilmer (pictured above, right).
Bainbridge Island Parks & Rec sponsored an Earth Day Expo at a local park on Saturday, April 22, and the chapter arranged to table there. “We coordinated with the local Parks & Rec sponsor to have Rep. Kilmer attend,” Mike said. “They hadn't planned on having any speakers, but they agreed to have Rep. Kilmer give remarks at CCL's suggestion.” Rep. Kilmer spent about 45 minutes at the festival, touring the 30 booths and meeting constituents after giving his remarks.
This isn’t the first time the Bainbridge Island chapter has gone the extra mile with their member of Congress, or vice versa — Rep. Kilmer invited Mike as his guest to the 2020 State of the Union address. This is the kind of incredible relationship-building CCL volunteers do across the country. Keep showing us how it’s done, CCL Bainbridge Island!
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5/11: Comparing Permitting Reform Proposals Across the Political Spectrum - In this training, CCL Research Coordinator Dana Nuccitelli will detail the permitting reforms proposed by progressives, centrists, and conservatives. Attendees will learn what the important components are and where there is potential for bipartisan compromise. Join us!
5/18: June 2023 Lobby Training #1: Primary & Supporting Asks - Join CCL's Vice President of Government Affairs Ben Pendergrass and Senior Director Jenn Tyler for a training that will review the updates and context for CCL's June 2023 Primary and Supporting Asks as well as guidance for lobby teams as they plan their online meetings. Join us!
5/18: Solar Power on Houses of Worship - Hear from representatives of the faith and solar communities about how federal tax credits can help your house of worship go solar. CCL is partnering with several organizations to support this webinar, offered by Environment America. Join us!
Need training on the basics? Catch our next session of Core Volunteer Training, made for newer volunteers:
5/16: Grassroots Outreach Basics - Join Dave Cain, CCL Presenters & Schedulers Action Team Leader, and Tamara Staton, CCL Education & Resilience Coordinator, to learn the bite-sized best practices of grassroots outreach like tabling and presentations. RSVP here.
To see other topics and past trainings, visit the Training Topics page of CCL Community.
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