Between mid-October and the second week of November, the EPA held 11 public listening sessions across the country to solicit feedback, ideas, and input from the public about the best Clean Air Act approaches to reducing carbon pollution from existing power plants -- the nation's largest stationary source of carbon pollution, responsible for about one third of all greenhouse gas pollution in the United States.
Doing what it does best -- mobilizing grassroots support -- the Sierra Club answered the bell for the listening sessions. Club activists and supporters packed conference rooms, raised the roof at rallies and hearings, and submitted comments online, sending EPA a loud and clear message that Americans want the strongest possible safeguards against industrial carbon pollution from power plants.
In Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Lexana (Kansas), New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington, D.C., more than 3,000 Sierra Club members and coalition supporters turned out for the listening sessions, organized and participated in rallies, and generated media attention.
Over 2,000 people, including nearly 1,200 Sierra Club members and supporters, gave testimony supporting strong new carbon-pollution guidelines. By contrast, a total of 375 people testified in opposition. Below, Mary Anne Hitt, director of the Club's Beyond Coal campaign, on the bus from Indianapolis to the Chicago hearing.
Meanwhile, thanks to the Sierra Club's online organizing efforts, more than 16,000 people took action online, urging the EPA to put forth the strongest possible safeguards.
The Sierra Club has compiled a report about the listening sessions, recapping what came down at each location, including details from testimony and a statistical breakdown of how many citizens spoke out for and against strong new guidelines.