Excerpt from NY Times May 29,2013:
Lobbying for the Greater Good:
Earlier this month, scientists reported that the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere had reached 400 parts per million. It’s an alarming milestone, to be sure, but, alas, there is no shortage of dire warnings about global warming. What is lacking is the political will to address the problem. The big question is, what useful steps can citizens take to build that will?
If you pose that question to the leading climate scientist James E. Hansen, he’ll tell you to connect with the Citizens Climate Lobby (C.C.L.). “They have the potential to be extremely effective,” he said. “That’s why I recommend them in my speeches. They’re doubling in size each year. And they’re pursuing the right policy.”
The C.C.L. is a relatively unknown organization that punches above its weight. Founded in 2007, the organization prepares citizens to be effective lobbyists, helping them build relationships with members of Congress and editorial page editors, showing them how to make persuasive arguments about policies to win bipartisan support. Currently, the group’s main focus is to build political will for a revenue-neutral carbon tax, a policy that has been supported by economists across the political spectrum and has demonstrated environmental and economic benefits, most recently, in the province of British Columbia and in Ireland. But a carbon tax faces serious political hurdles in the United States.