After four successful national Good Jobs, Green Jobs Conferences, this year we decided to do something different and host four regional conferences in order to go directly to the states where work is being done to make good, green jobs.
Every conference was amazing, and we are very excited about the relationships that were formed and can’t wait to see what will come from them. Whether it was Georgia Congressman John Lewis reminding conference attendees at the Southern conference that environmentalists and union members are “one family” or hearing first-hand about the unfair and unsafe working conditions California’s recycling workers see every day at the Western Conference, each of the four regional conferences were unique, and the 2,500 participants from 910 organization got to have detailed conversations about what exactly needs to be done to get Americans to work in the good, green jobs we need as we move to the 21st century.
Good Jobs, Green Jobs South
For the first 2012 Good Jobs, Green Jobs Regional Conference, we headed to Atlanta to discuss how to make family-supporting, green jobs in communities ranging from South Carolina to Tennessee to Florida to Texas.
You can watch videos — including speeches from National Wildlife Federation President and CEO Larry Schweiger, Communications Workers of America President Larry Cohen, BlueGreen Alliance Jobs21! National Co-Chair Mark Schauer — and photos from Good Jobs, Green Jobs South below:
Good Jobs, Green Jobs West
Next, we headed to Los Angeles for Good Jobs, Green Jobs West — an area which is leading the nation’s renewable energy and green jobs office. During the conference participants were able to take action by rallying in support of the workers at American Reclamation, a recycling center where were workers are organizing for fair working conditions.
During the conference, attendees heard speeches from Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigos, Congressman Xavier Becerra, Teamsters General President James P. Hoffa, Sierra Club Past President and Treasurer Allison Chin, and others. Watch the videos below:
Good Jobs, Green Jobs East
The third Good Jobs, Green Jobs conference — Good Jobs, Green Jobs East — was in Philadelphia April 3-4.
People from throughout the East gathered together to share their stories and hear from speakers like White House Council on Environmental Quality Chair Nancy Sutley, U.S. Sen. Chris Coons, Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz, Congressman Chaka Fattah, Philadephia Mayor Michael A. Nutter and BlueGreen Alliance Foundation President David Foster. See the videos and photos here:
Good Jobs, Green Jobs Midwest
For the final 2012 Good Jobs, Green Jobs Regional Conference, we went to Detroit, a city being brought back to life by the rebound of America’s auto industry and the green economy.
Highlights from the Good Jobs, Green Jobs Midwest conference include the awarding of the 2012 Green Jobs Champion Award to Senator Debbie Stabenow and Congressman John Dingell along with speeches from White House Council on Environmental Quality Deputy Director and General Counsel Gary Guzy, Deputy Secretary of Energy Daniel Poneman, United Steelworkers International President Leo Gerard, Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune and Michigan AFL-CIO President Karla Swift. See the videos and photos here:
From the Department of Energy: The Race is On — Clean Energy and New Jobs in America, Starting in Michigan
This blog is cross-posted from the Department of Energy's website.
Thank you to all those who attended any of our four 2012 Good Jobs, Green Jobs Regional conferences along with all of our sponsors (South, West, East, and Midwest), conveners, presenters and volunteers. We could not have put on these four amazing conferences without your support.
We hope you'll join us next April when we return to Washington, D.C. for the Good Jobs, Green Jobs National Conference Aptril 16-18!
This follow item was submitted by Daniel Villao, California Construction Academy, A Project of the UCLA Labor Center. "Beyond Green Jobs: Building Lasting Opportunities in Energy Efficiency" was released at Good Jobs, Green Jobs West.
The nation’s energy efficiency market is currently at a crossroads. Public funds are winding down and many basic weatherization initiatives have produced short-term, temporary jobs without making significant long-term environmental and economic impacts. In this tough economic climate, many have begun to ask, what are innovative ways to bring energy efficiency to scale?
The California Construction Academy, a project of the UCLA Labor Center, recently released a book to explore this question called Beyond Green Jobs: Building Lasting Opportunities in Energy Efficiency. It is now available for order and for free download at: http://constructionacademy.org/book/
DETROIT, MI (May 11, 2012) Senator Debbie Stabenow and Congressman John Dingell today received the 2012 Green Jobs Champion Award today at the 2012 Good Jobs, Green Jobs Midwest Conference. The two-day conference brought together business, environmental, labor, nonprofit and elected leaders from across the Midwest to discuss getting Americans to work in good, green jobs.
“Senator Debbie Stabenow and Congressman John Dingell are champions of working people and the environment,” said David Foster, President of the BlueGreen Alliance Foundation. “Their voices have helped frame our nation’s discussion about manufacturing and environmental protections. With their help, I am certain we can create good, family-sustaining jobs here in Michigan and throughout the rest of the country.”
“New clean energy technologies are transforming Michigan’s economy, spurring new job growth and reducing America’s dependence on foreign oil. Michigan businesses and entrepreneurs are leading the nation in clean energy patents and advanced battery research and production. I am honored to accept this award on behalf of the highly-skilled, hardworking men and women across our state,” said Stabenow.
“As we work to improve our fragile economy, it is important that we support businesses so they can have the tools to create and maintain jobs and put Americans back to work,” said Dingell, a senior member of the Committee on Energy and Commerce. “However, it is also important that we not cede ground in our efforts to keep our air clean and our environment viable for the future; the health of our citizens is too important.”
The Green Jobs Champion award has been given out at the Good Jobs, Green Jobs Conference since 2009, and it recognizes individuals for their hard work and dedication to moving America to a cleaner, more efficient economy with good jobs that are also good for our environment.
The ceremony took place during the final day of the Good Jobs, Green Jobs Midwest Conference in Detroit, the final of four regional conferences held this year. The other conferences were held in Atlanta, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia.
Congressman Hansen Clarke kicked off Good Jobs, Green Jobs Midwest’s second day as a keynote speaker with a fiery speech, "Minute by minute our planet is getting hotter and hotter. We do not have time. You've got to demand that we take action now; fight and change the system, we can create these green jobs together."
Clarke said grassroots efforts are needed to create the change we need to move America forward to a cleaner energy economy.
The Congressman's hard-charging speech excited the hundreds gathered, and garnered a huge ovation.
Autoworkers Fighting For Good Jobs
United Autoworkers President Bob King talked about the auto recovery, and how good jobs are being created up and down the supply chain right now in the U.S. making fuel-efficient vehicles.
"One of the top customer demands, thankfully, is for more fuel efficient vehicles," said King. "Company after company, factory after factory, jobs are being created today making new technology."
Read the rest of this post on the blog
The afternoon plenary session of the Good Jobs, Green Jobs Midwest Conference opened with White House Council on Environmental Quality Deputy Director Gary Guzy talking about the promise of American manufacturing to build a cleaner, more efficient economy.
"It's critical that we continue to invest and we don't ceed our leadership to other countries," said Guzy.
Guzy focused on the efforts to make vehicles more fuel efficient, which will save consumers money — the 54.5 miles per gallon fuel standard for light-duty vehicles saves an estimated $8,000 in gas over the life of the vehicle — as well as how more fuel efficient cars are reducing pollution and creating jobs here in the U.S.
"We need more jobs, and we need more progress," said Guzy.
Read the rest of this post on the blog
There could not have been a better way to kick off the 2012 Good Jobs, Green Jobs Midwest Conference — the last Good Jobs, Green Jobs Regional Conference for 2012 — than with a poem and song from “The Lady Achievers,” a choir from the local Detroit School of Arts. Their uplifting song echoed in the ballroom here at the Detroit Marriott Hotel at the Renaissance Center.
The Deputy Director of the BlueGreen Alliance, Margrete Strand Rangnes, provided brief, but fiery remarks, leading into a speech by Dr. Bertram Marks, a pastor and lawyer in Detroit. Rev. Marks said, “Just like being a lawyer and pastor are not mutually exclusive, liking manufacturing and caring for the environment aren’t mutually exclusive.”
United Steelworkers International President Leo Gerard spoke of the importance of the bond between environmentalists and union members to creating a lasting impact on our country.
“When I think about the way I grew up, I came to realize that the same people telling us you couldn’t have jobs with good wages were the ones who said we couldn’t have good jobs and a clean environment,” said Gerard. “We can and must have both or neither.”
“We have a tremendous opportunity by doing what’s right, by creating and maintaining good jobs,” said Gerard, calling for greening schools and public buildings to create good jobs and make buildings energy efficient and healthy.
Michael Brune, the Executive Director of the Sierra Club, took the stage and said the vision of the partnership between environmentalists and union workers was simple. ““The Sierra Club, at its core, stands for people and the planet. There’s far more that unites us than is pulling us apart.” He focused on the work being done to make vehicles more efficient and the positive impact on the environment and jobs that the new fuel efficiency standards will create.
Jim Harrison, the President of Utility Workers Union of America Local 223 in Michigan, took the stage next and called for a just transition for workers as we reduce carbon and ensure the jobs we create by doing so are good jobs with fair pay and good benefits for workers.
Read the rest of this post on the #GJGJ2012 blog
The blog was originally posted on the Ecology Center's EcoLink.
Ecology Center staff members are playing key roles in leading workshops and convening panels at the Good Jobs, Green Jobs Midwest Conference to be held in Detroit May 10-11.
The annual meeting, this year being hosted in Detroit and 3 other cities around the country, is designed to bring together individuals and organizations to talk about ways to build a green economy that creates good jobs, reduces global warming and preserves America's environmental and economic security. Students and volunteers can receive a discount on the conference fee.
The two-day meeting will include more than 40 workshops and speakers including Rep. Hansen Clarke, United Auto Workers president Bob King, and Sierra Club president Michael Brune.
This blow was submitted by the staff at Sierra Club’s North Star Chapter.
The Sierra Club’s North Star Chapter is thrilled to once again be represented at this year’s Good Jobs, Green Jobs Midwest Conference! Environmental, business, labor, elected, and community leaders will be gathering to exchange ideas and build coalitions to preserve our environmental and economic future. The conference will be held May 10-11 in Detroit, Michigan. The Good Jobs Green Jobs Conference is always a great opportunity to network and see new, innovative ideas!
This year, we are particularly excited to be participating in a workshop with many of our terrific allies from Minnesota. The workshop will focus on the achievements and challenges that the Minnesota Solar Works Campaign has experienced so far, and offer some lessons learned for advocates seeking to develop their own coalition-style campaigns in support of renewable energy. The Minnesota Solar Works Campaign encourages growth in the solar energy industry in Minnesota by promoting a solar-friendly business and political climate. Panelists Ken Bradley (Environment MN), Katie Gulley (BlueGreen Alliance), and Lynn Hinkle (MnSEIA) will be joined by Sierra Club’s Justin Fay to discuss the strategies and tactics Minnesota Solar Works used to develop and expand its coalition.
The workshop, Organizing for the Future: The Minnesota Solar Works Campaign will be held Friday, May 11, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
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