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March 11, 2010

Earth Day Revolution Kicks Off

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This morning, right next to the U.S. Capitol building, we saw the official kick off the 2010 Earth Day Revolution. Today marks 40 days until Earth Day, and coincidentally enough, this year is the 40th anniversary of Earth Day.

The Earth Day Revolution calls for the Senate to stop stalling and pass comprehensive clean energy and climate legislation, and today's rally speakers signed the official Earth Day Revolution Declaration:

"Since the first Earth Day began 40 years ago, and despite incredible progress on environmental protection, America has a failing energy policy that continues to reward polluters, undermines the health of the American people, threatens our national and economic security and keeps us dependent on energy sources from overseas. We call on the Congress to finally push aside the obstruction of the polluter lobby and stand with America's Clean Energy Patriots. We call for America's elected leaders to join us as Clean Energy Patriots and deliver on the promise of a clean energy revolution and climate action now."

The rally's speakers were all quite inspiring, with many wanting to know just whose side the Senate is on - Big Oil's, or clean energy. I particularly enjoyed hearing from Reverend Lennox Yearwood, Jr., President of the Hip Hop Caucus.

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"For our generation, this is a battle for survival," said Rev. Yearwood (pictured above). "We need to reclaim our communities and we need to restore our planet."

Speakers called for a new clean energy policy that protects the planet and not the same old special interests that want to block action on global warming and continue to pollute our air, water and land.

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Sierra Club President Allison Chin (pictured above) also spoke. "Over the next 40 days, we need Senators to stand up and separate themselves from Big Oil," she said. Read her full remarks here.

Rock the Vote President Heather Smith brought up the wants and needs of today's youth movement. "Young people want jobs, they want a cleaner planet and they want security," said Smith, noting that clean energy can bring about all of the above.

Finally, Denis Hayes, one of the national coordinators of the first Earth Day 40 years ago spoke and told tales of what it was like planning it all in such a different time. Here is a photo of Hayes signing the declaration.

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The whole rally was powerful and certainly got me excited about this year's Earth Day. Stay tuned to Climate Crossroads and the Sierra Club Earth Day site to find out what you can do with us on April 22.

For now, you too can sign the Earth Day Revolution Declaration and learn more about the cause by going to www.EarthDayRevolution.com  

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Here's a full list of all the groups that have signed the Declaration:

1Sky, Audubon, American Hunters and Shooters, American Rivers, American Values Network, Campus Progress, Center for American Progress Action Fund, Clean Water Action, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, Climate Protection Action Fund, Climate Solutions, Defenders of Wildlife, Democracia Ahora, Earth Day Network, Environment America, Environmental Defense Action Fund, Environmental Law and Policy Center, Green for All, Hip Hop Caucus, Interfaith Power and Light, La Onda Verde, League of Conservation Voters, National Catholic Rural Life Conference, National Wildlife Federation, NWF Campus Ecology, Natural Resources Defense Council Action Fund, Oceana, Operation Free, Rock the Vote, Sierra Club, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, SACE, Southern Energy Network, StudentPIRGs, SustainUS, Truman National Security Project, Union of Concerned Scientists, Veterans for Common Sense, Voces Verdes, World Wildlife Fund, The Wilderness Society.

All photos by Heather Moyer.

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