I am blogging from Omni Shoreham Hotel in DC the site of national conference. Connection is poor (read: no signal), so this is a delayed blogging. The ballroom, where event is held - is packed. There’s probably more than 500 attendees. Today is the first day of the conference. Line up of speakers for today among others include: David Foster (Blue Green Alliance), Leo Gerard (United Steelworker), Donald Kennedy (Sierra Club), Achim Steiner (UNDP), Larry Cohen (CWA), Denise Bode (AWEA), Peter Lehner (NRDC). Rep. Keith Ellison (MN-5) will also talk.
9:00 David Foster the Exec. Director of Blue Green Alliance give a welcome remarks. Let’s talk to Congress make sure they make a big downpayment on the green economy.
9:19 Leo Gerard, Intl. President of United Steelworkers. He said his parents be upset if he says ‘bullshit’ as his introduction. Thanks some corporation veeps, Al Gore, Gamesa, etc. These corps. understand and understood the one thing in common they represented by United Steelworkers. He’s much happier this year than last year. There’s no free market. All market is regulated. Quoted Apollo Alliance study of investment $100B would create 2 mil green jobs. Talks about relationship with Gamesa. 100% union in America. Think about what we can do if every town and cities have resources, retrofit those buildings. Housing is flat. Some members don’t have jobs. Smart grid allows to move energy without losing much. Create millions of jobs. Fascinating to watch what happens on the Hill, esp. Republicans. There are some Democrats, too. Majority in the room over 30. Quoted FDR. Barack Obama is going to be our FDR. We know where his heart is. Direction pointed in. We know he can’t get there by himself. See labor not as a problem, but as a solution. 58% of manufacturing goods, imported goods from China are from cos. used to manufacture products here. Talks about global warming. Closing by saying that it’s time for Canadian gov. to start defending their workers.
9:42 Don Kennedy speaks. Thanks Leo for BS intro. 2 big probs: global warming, fiscal chilly. Mechanism we can use to solve this probs. New spirit of leadership here. Soon to be expressed by me and you. He’s glad that ‘science is back.’ Welcoming it back. It’s really a new set of players.
9:49 Achim Steiner representing UNEP. UNEP is the first of UN family happens to open office located in Kenya. 2006 met Barack O in Kenya. This meeting is quite extra ordinary. The labor movement is again today is movement of people. What it means to be citizens of global economy. Sustainable economy. The fact today more jobs in RE than gas +oil industry. Green jobs already happening in part because of environment. Climate change. Imagine 30/40 yrs from now there won’t be any commercial fisheries. Ecosystem. Water crisis. This is an outcome of ignorance, arrogance think about what we’re doing today and how we should change course. This moment in America is extraordinary. How the people elected leader such as Pres. Obama. To drive the future of economy. Green eco. recovery package are now all over the world, it’s a global discussion. Whether is Japan, China. Where are the jobs going to come from? There’s fundamental shift. More efficient, less polluting. This is the role UN plays. Roosevelt is quoted. Market is not free forces, never been. FDR is one of the architects of what’s vital in the global eco.
10:06 Larry Cohen intro. Steel workers rapid change team had rally incl. rebirth of workers rights. Begin 1m march to bring back workers rights, free choice act. Clean environment. Talk about Canada, Columbia trade agreement. Fair trade v. sustainable economy. Unite the employee free choice act. They’re related. We all believe in sustainable economy. We believe that what we produce is more important than what we consume. Workers can’t be just another commodity. Workers have rights around the world. 1mil members march is about bring back workers rights. Without workers can’t make green economy a reality. Talk about 2 of CWA’s members work with different cos of why we’re marching today. Good jobs, green jobs we have to work for it. Sustainable eco. is not about protectionist. A lot of this conf. is about good public policy. 1.4 mil people mobilize. Sustainability is what unite us. Barack said that this is our time. Econ recovery is not about jobs. We want green jobs.
We're waiting for Congressman Keith Ellison, (D-MN). Schedule shows 11am.
11:10: Peter Lehner talks about challenges how challenges also creates opportunities. Good jobs that bring dignity for our family and community. Economy system is part of economy system. Gives example of climate change affecting a lot of us. 51k jobs can be created in mass transit. We need comprehensive policy. Now.
11:18 Keith Ellison was introduced from Montana.. ooops! Should have been Minnesota. Ellison warms up to the crowd. This is an opportunity for all of us to be part of worldwide movement to save our jobs. This is our business. Can't exclude anybody. We can't leave anybody out. Solidify our coalition. It starts from the local community. Start getting the civil rights comm + labor + environment talk about our collective problems. Talk about stimulus package and process. Empower people to get active. You gotta right the bill. Bill is not done until it is sign by the President. Gotta impact this process. Save this economy right now. Reach out and get everybody and everybody make green economy. Thanks the audience for their time.
11: 32 Deniso bode talks about 20% of wind energy by 2030. US tops in wind energy production pass Germany. 25MW can generate enough electricity to power 7M homes. Pres. Obama's vision to double production by 2012 is visible. Now, let's talk about jobs. We're adding jobs even as the econ. sluggish. '07 & '08 adding or expanding 70 new facilities in U.S. Great news for American workers. Every job created in this industry is a new one. Wind projects can be built quickly. Let's work together to get the tools. Together, we can get the job done.
Attendees will go to the Hill for advocacy day (read: grassroots lobbying). And am back to office to take care some biz.