Saturday, August 29, 2009

Will Cap And Trade Push Lead To Lasting Alliance Between Workers and Environmentalists?

The Blue-Green Aliance shows hope that working toward a new alternative energy economy will create a lasting alignment between environmental stewardship and economic prosperity.

Ben Gemen of Climate Wire and the New York Times reports:

"Both of these movements have realized they really need each other to get what they want," said J. Timmons Roberts, a Brown University sociologist who has written on labor-environmental coalitions. The Sierra Club and the United Steelworkers, after years of work together, formally launched the alliance in 2006. The effort expanded in 2008 and 2009, adding the Natural Resources Defense Council and several unions -- the Service Employees International Union, Communications Workers of America, Utility Workers Union of America, Laborers' International Union of North America, and the American Federation of Teachers.

The alliance has focused largely on supporting legislation that would impose national curbs on greenhouse gas emissions and boost deployment of low-carbon energy sources that both groups say will create scores of new "green jobs." But the alliance is also pushing for workplace-organizing legislation -- labor's top priority -- as well as changes in trade policy and curbs on industrial toxics." See full article.

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