Summer 2018 News Briefs

Last updated: 6/5/2018

Conservation

Here's how we can save tropical forests

What can Americans do to protect tropical forests? And why do they matter? Well, for one thing, tropical forests can play a critical role in slowing down climate change.

Tropical forests work as Earth’s lungs—they breathe in carbon dioxide and breathe out oxygen, reducing global warming and cleaning the air. But for years, agricultural companies considered deforestation to be the fastest, cheapest path to profit. Razing forests to make way for crops and cattle accounts for 10 to 15 percent of the pollution that’s changing our climate, and it drives out orangutans, elephants, tigers, jaguars and other threatened or endangered animals.

With your support, Environment North Carolina and our national network are calling on companies in the palm oil, soybean and beef industries to commit to zero deforestation. Already, 74 percent of palm oil refineries have taken action—now, we need to call on more companies to make the commitment.


Environmental Defense

Supporters stand for oceans over drilling

From the Atlantic to the Pacific, from the sunny Gulf of Mexico to the frigid Arctic, America’s oceans are beautiful, wild and worthy of protection. But the Trump administration put them at risk when it vowed to open 90 percent of our coastal waters to expanded offshore oil and gas drilling.

Everyone who remembers the Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf or the Exxon Valdez spill off Alaska’s coast understands that drilling is a threat to the waters and wildlife we love. And across the country, millions of Americans have spoken out against these dangerous plans.

Thanks to the support and action of members like you, Environment North Carolina and our national network held rallies and events, packed public hearings, and delivered more than 35,000 public comments to the Department of the Interior. Together, we can save our shores and coasts from offshore drilling.

 

Go Solar 

180 mayors see the light, commit to solar

Caption: Mayor Vi Lyles of Charlotte is one of more than 180 mayors from across the country who are embracing clean energy from the sun.

What do the Democratic mayor of Berkeley, Calif., and the Republican mayor of Abita Springs, La., have in common? They’re among the 180 mayors who, upon our urging, resolved to make solar energy a key element of their communities’ energy plans.

We have the potential to generate 100 times more energy from the sun than the total amount of energy we consume each year—and cities can be primary drivers of that growth by making it easier for Americans to go solar. Cities can set ambitious goals and enact policies to ensure homeowners receive a fair price for the solar energy they produce, and make installing panels hassle-free.

“Cities everywhere should take steps to switch to solar energy,” said Emma Searson, campaign coordinator for Environment North Carolina. “By tapping into the power of the sun, cities can benefit from cleaner air and improved public health, while simultaneously tackling climate change.”