Weekly Briefing: CCLers Ask Climate Questions At Congressional Town Halls
September 6, 2023
Citizens’ Climate Lobby volunteers are known for how we fill the halls of Capitol Hill each June — but we don’t stop there. During the August recess, when senators and representatives are working in their state and district offices, CCLers find even more ways to connect.
During this year’s recess, we focused on attending town halls. Volunteers attended and asked thoughtful questions about climate action in at least 53 events all around the country.
In Colorado, Aaron H. asked Sen. Hickenlooper (D-CO), “With your history of bipartisanship, how will you bring members of both parties together to advance more climate solutions?”
In Michigan, at a town hall with Rep. Haley Stevens (D-MI-11), CCL volunteer Julie B. says, “There were three or four total climate-related questions, which was great, and two by us!”
In Louisiana, Laura M. asked Rep. Clay Higgins (R-LA-03) about increasing Louisiana’s climate resilience. “I got to hear him in person and find that we actually do share some common ground,” Laura says. “I call it a win.”
Read these town hall stories and more highlights on CCL’s blog.
In other news this week:
• Shout out from climate communicator: CCL Advisory Board member and climate communications expert Dr. Katharine Hayhoe mentioned CCL in a recent edition of her “Talking Climate” newsletter. “Economists have already figured out a Nobel-prize winning solution: taxing carbon pollution and putting the money back in taxpayers' pockets,” she explains. “39 countries have already done it, including Canada. The rest of us just need to get on board!”
• Professional pics from June conference: Need high quality photography that shows CCL volunteers in action? Our "Photos" resource page on CCL Community has been updated to include a fresh batch of professional photos from our annual conference, including our 2023 group photo on the Capitol steps.
Take action this week
If you have a little time: Call Congress for more clean energy permitting reform. Congress included some permitting reform in the debt ceiling bill earlier this year, but we need them to do more. We still want to see measures to boost clean energy projects and transmission, and improve community involvement in the process. Can you call Congress to keep up the pressure?
If you have more time: Write a letter at our LTE workshop. Members of Congress pay close attention to local media. You can focus that attention on climate change by writing letters to the editor (LTEs) about timely climate topics and submitting them to your local newspaper. Join our monthly LTE workshop — Tues., Sept. 12 at 6:30 p.m. ET / 3:30 p.m. PT — for fresh letter ideas and focused time to write your letter.
Featured chapter: CCL Las Vegas
CCL’s Las Vegas chapter represents all of Southern Nevada, including three congressional districts. “We’re an energetic group,” says chapter member Joanne Leovy, as evidenced by some of their fantastic media and outreach efforts recently.
This summer, volunteer Rita Ransom published an opinion piece in the Las Vegas Sun, which she crafted with great quotes from other chapter members talking about the local climate impacts they’re personally seeing in Nevada. The piece draws attention to the dangers of poor air quality and the threat of extreme heat. It also touches on the positive impact of planting trees and the critical role they play in reducing the urban heat island effect and helping to promote environmental justice.
Urban trees and their heat mitigation benefits have anchored the chapter’s recent outreach efforts. Joanne says, “In the past couple of months, we have hosted a tree planting and panel discussion, helped with a trail cleanup, and focused our tabling on parts of our community most impacted by extreme heat. We have had a great time working with other local organizations focused on helping our most vulnerable residents become more resilient.”
“We find that action is a great antidote to climate concern,” Joanne adds. Great work, CCL Las Vegas!
Have you logged your recent activities in the Action Tracker? Tell us what you and your chapter have been up to lately.
Want your chapter to be featured? Share your info and photos with us.
9/7: Highlight Your Local Climate Impacts With Regional Slide Decks - Climate change is hitting every corner of the country in particular ways. Join CCL's Research Coordinator Dana Nuccitelli to learn how to highlight those impacts with regional presentation slides, complete with scientific source references. Join us!
9/14: Clean Energy Permitting Reform Basics Action Party - Join CCL's Research Team to learn the basics of clean energy permitting reform and take action together to move Congress forward on it. Join us!
Need training on the basics? The next round of our Climate Advocacy Certificate Program launches on Sept. 12. Learn about the program and see some successes from recent program participants in this blog post, and plan to join us for the kickoff session:
9/12: CCL Community Website Walkthrough - This initial training, led by Tamara Staton, Education and Resilience Coordinator, focuses on helping you navigate our websites and find ways to put your talents, experience and interests to good use in CCL. Join us!
To see other topics and past trainings, visit the Training Topics page of CCL Community.