Welcome to the first eActivist

Welcome to the first eActivist

from Executive Director Sara Patton

Sara Patton, Executive Director

My first eActivist column promises to be shorter if not sweeter than my hard copy columns of yore. Electronic communications have proved a great boon to public-interest advocates, and we’re moving to take advantage of that opportunity.

But we’ll need to fully deploy all modes of human communication to surmount the challenges before us.

When I was in D.C. this June I told folks in Congress and the administration that the Sixth Northwest Power and Conservation Plan confirmed the vision of the Coalition/Save Our Wild Salmon/Sierra Club Bright Future report. I said they no longer have to believe fish-kissers, tree huggers and clean energy geeks about the clean, affordable energy future! Energy efficiency and clean renewables have risen to the top of the list … on the ground and in utilities’ long-term plans, the official regional plan, state legislatures and public utility commissions.

But what are the best ways to get the available clean energy and distribute its benefits? Coalition members and staff are finding themselves on opposite sides in policy debates and rate cases that focus on boosting energy efficiency and renewables development. Coalition policy resolutions help but do not resolve all differences.

We all know we must significantly increase our clean-energy investments, not just to meet new demand but also to retire old power plants that spew pollution or extinguish salmon. We also know we can afford the increased investment.

Working together we can figure out how to share the benefits among our communities: low-income households, residential and business consumers, job seekers, clean energy businesses, fish-kissers, tree huggers and clean energy geeks!

Regardless of the medium, that’s what this Coalition has been and always will be about.