Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Urban campaign launched to Green the Block
The White House in moving forward with its clean energy economy knows that it is imperative that marginalized groups are not left behind. With $60 billion already invested in green jobs all Americans must be informed and have access to the new opportunities available.
Green the Block is a new campaign to engage and ensure that vulnerable communities are part of the process. Organized by Green For All and the Hip Hop Caucus this new initiative will "encourage education, legislative advocacy, private-sector development and youth activism." Launched on August 4, Green the Block will target communities at risk and provide them with the requisite tools to access the benefits and opportunities that arise from clean energy investments.
“Green the Block is a movement to build a clean-energy economy where everyone has a chance to succeed,” said Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, CEO of Green For All. “That starts with making sure that those who are often left out and left behind – low-income people and communities of color – have a voice and a presence in this movement. These communities also need a fair share of the economic, social and environmental benefits this transition is creating.”
Reverend Lennox Yearwood, Jr., president of the Hip Hop Caucus, states, “The building of a clean-energy economy in the United States can serve to create new pathways out of poverty for the 78 million people in this country who are presently poor or near poor.”
Yearwood adds that, "The first milestone for Green the Block will be on our National Day of Service, September 11, 2009, where we will organize Green the Block service events around the country in coordination with the President's initiative, United We Serve."
Members of the White House "Green" Cabinet were also on hand for the announcement. Secretary Shaun Donovan, Department of Housing and Urban Development said, “The transition to clean energy and the benefits from it should extend to every corner of the country and penetrate communities that have long been passed over whenever waves of economic innovation are developing.”
Under Secretary Kristina Johnson, Department of Energy, said, “Cleaner communities are more livable communities. This is a chance for us to significantly change course in our use of energy and lift up the economic fortunes of individuals and families.” To date the DOE has earmarked more than $8 billion for weatherization projects in local communities. These projects include the installation of new energy-efficient windows and doors and better forms of building and housing insulation.