Fish 'n Chips–Hold the Fish!
Is It Better to be Loved, or Feared?
Ah, the age-old question, first posed by Mr. Machiavelli in 1513.
Well, if you’re the Sierra Club’s Global Warming Team,
and they’re the auto industry, may we suggest the latter?
It looks like the folks in Detroit have taken our advice. Automotive
News rated Dan Becker, director of the Club’s Global Warming
program, as one of the “Top 10 People who Matter to the Industry
in the Nation’s Capital.” Becker not only made the list,
but garnered only one out of five possible stars in the magazine's
rating system—which is highly indicative of his ability to
act as a thorn in their side. (To our surprise, John Dingell, representative
from Michigan, and the industry’s long-time crusader in Washington,
got only two stars!)
Wrote the editors: “Environmental advocates...consider the
increase [in fuel economy] adopted by the Bush administration to
be little more than tokenism. But environmental lobbyists earn points
for persistence. No one has been more persistent than Becker, a
15-year veteran of the Sierra Club.”
Congrats, Dan! And thanks to tipster Dave Hamilton.
Dude, Where’s My Hybrid!?
Switching gears, but sticking with automotive news, it has not
all been smooth sailing for our summer roadtrip teams. While criss-crossing
the country in hybrid cars to let American consumers know that there
is a better, more fuel-efficient way to drive, one sometimes hits
a pothole. Or gives away one’s keys to a reporter.
Hybrid tour summer staffer Rebecca Van Damm did just that with
her only set of keys, forcing her to spend the weekend at a Club
leader’s house in Jacksonville, Florida, while waiting for
the keys to arrive via FedEx. She went boating and hiking with the
group that weekend and ended up leaving with a whole town of new
friends—so all was not lost.
After joining her partner in crime, Stephanie Powell, the two had
a second mishap—a fender bender—in Philly. Unfortunately,
there was not a hybrid rental to be had in the entire New York/New
Jersey area. So the resourceful team placed a big banner strategically
over the big dent for the Manhattan press events in Battery Park.
But don't worry, accounting staff, it was all covered by Toyota.
Bleeding Heart Liberals vs. Bloodthirsty Conservatives.
Sound like a fair description of AM radio in your town? It is in
Erie, Pa, where two stations—one on the left and one on the
right—gladly agreed to lock horns for a “bleeding heart
liberals vs. bloodthirsty conservatives” blood drive, benefitting
the Community Bloodbank of Northwestern Pennsylvania. On the morning
of July 7, as fans of both stations lined up and rolled up their
sleeves, Heidi the Hybrid pulled onto the lot. She’s the Sierra
Club’s environmental education answer to the Republican National
Committee’s Reggie the voter-registration Rig. No word yet
on which political faction proved more compassionate that day, but
hopefully it was an instance of a little friendly competetion benefitting
all. Learn more about Heidi here.
Fish ‘n Chips—Hold the Fish:
In Cleveland, Sierra Club organizer Jennifer Lenhart reports that
the only fish at the fish fry was her husband, though he was merely
in costume. Hosted by the Club and the League of Conservation Voters,
the fishless fish fry highlighted the danger posed by eating mercury-contaminated
fish caught in Ohio’s rivers and lakes and featured fishless
fish sticks, mock tuna salad, and two games for kids—“Finding
Clean Nemo” and “Pin the Mercury on the Human.”
Meanwhile, the Club used the image above to get the word out on
how mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants get into fish
and how the Bush administration’s mercury policy comes up
short For more, go to sierraclub.org/mercury.
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