Briefing Presidential Advisors Can Add Hope to the Climate Debate

By Felix Kramer

By Felix Kramer

What can happen when over a dozen presidential candidates’ climate advisors hear about solutions to reverse global warming and restore a healthy climate ? After a unique San Francisco briefing, their candidates can start telling inspiring climate stories on the campaign trail! And we can get better debate questions. (You can also read and comment on this story at Medium: free access link.)

Healthy Climate Presidential Briefing: Call for Summer Volunteers, an independent website promoting climate restoration projects, is assembling a team to educate and empower presidential candidates to talk about inspiring climate goals and action. Can you devote 7-20 hours/week in July-August to help catalyze national conversations about hopeful climate strategies? Can you recruit climate-focused colleagues to join too?

Our unprecedented strategy: Invite all candidates’ climate policy advisors to a nonpartisan Bay Area Healthy Climate Briefing. We will hold it ASAP, ideally before the Democratic National Committee votes Aug. 23 on a climate debate or before the Sept. 23 Presidential Climate Summit at Climate Week in NY. Advisors will bring back to their candidates stories of existing technologies, solutions, and initiatives to reverse global warming and restore a safe and healthy climate, most of them developed here in the Bay Area.

Bonus: We’ll facilitate local fundraisers organized by climate-focused supporters of each candidate, featuring their campaign climate policy advisor as a featured surrogate

Calling for volunteers to form a team July-August for: Networking to climate communities and candidate supporters; 2. Event organizing for briefing and fundraisers; 3. Research a Presidential Scorecard for reversing global warming & restoring our climate 4. Communicating our plans. Please copy & forward this Call for Volunteers!

Details at Medium: Briefing Presidential Advisors Can Add Hope to the Climate Debate or contact us

Yes, we’ll have a 2020 climate election!

Grassroots groups, joined as of July 3 by 20 presidential candidates, pushed back when the Democratic National Committee nixed holding a debate on our climate crisis. As support grew from activists, state DNC chairs, the DNC scheduled a vote by their committee members  August 23. In parallel, a coalition of groups has begun to plan a Presidential Climate Summit in New York September 23; its form may depend on how the DNC votes. (The event’s status is in doubt after one sponsor’s actions  led to sponsor withdrawals, but that will probably get quickly resolved.)

These forums can focus on what the U.S. can do. They’ll start with candidates’ commitments to get off fossil fuels ASAP. Then a climate debate can go further, considering more inspiring goals than trying to avoid the worst consequences ahead. Considering what kind of future we can promise today’s high-school activists, a few candidates are starting to talk about reversing global warming and restoring our climate. That’s where we in Northern California come in. We’re uniquely situated to showcase how we can restore our climate. We can explore these hopeful goals with people who have the ear of the presidential candidates.

Proposed San Francisco Bay Area Briefing for Climate Policy Advisors of ALL Presidential Campaigns

Ideally before the August 23 DNC vote, or if not before Climate Week in September, we’re enlisting volunteers to organize a one-day Healthy Climate Briefing  for climate policy advisors from all presidential campaigns  about solutions that go beyond the 2050 goals to stay under 2°C or 1.5°C.. (This idea was sparked by our successful efforts with Governor Jay Inslee’s campaign, as we report at The 2020 Climate Election, Jay Inslee & Me.) Organizing the briefing will:

  • build support for a DNC vote to approve a climate debate;
  • expand the agenda for that event — and influence debate questions;
  • spread the word about new, ambitious climate goals;
  • create connections among influential climate advisors from competing campaigns who meet each other informally, paving the way for collaborations as the field of candidates narrows.

In 2019-20, many new climate technologies and solutions are being developed in the San Francisco Bay Area (SFBA). Many entrepreneurs have experience from cleantech and have already connected with elected officials. The briefing will introduce specific technologies  — and provide inspiring stories and hopeful visions candidates can feature when they talk about a better, not less bad, climate future. Topics and briefers can include:

Groups we plan to invite to co-organize, co-sponsor, and attend include (alphabetically): • 350BayAreaCalifornia League of Conservation Voters • Citizens’ Climate Lobby  • Climate Reality  • Elders Climate Action • Environmental EntrepreneursGreening Forward • GreenpeaceLeague of Women Voters of California • Greening ForwardSierra Club  • Sunrise Movement Bay AreaVoices for Progress •  Youth vs. Apocalypse  and others. The briefers and groups can offer other meetings, events or field trips the day before or after the briefing.

We can increase advisors’ motivation to come

On a parallel track to this nonpartisan event, Bay Area climate advocates and activists who support particular candidates will organize multiple fundraisers featuring the climate policy advisors as “surrogates.” At these events the nights before & after the briefing, advisor/surrogates will  hear from their climate-focused supporters.  (We will facilitate leaders and members of 501(c)3 organizations to participate in these fundraisers as individuals.)

 Can you help make the briefing and fundraisers happen?

Find out more at How we’ll put together the Healthy Climate Briefing and Fundraisers. It’s a Google Doc with:

  1. Call for volunteers & project summary
  2. Tasks and steps to make this campaign happen
  3. How to organize multiple candidate fundraisers

Some volunteers can also work on Part 3: a Healthy Climate Scorecard for 2020 candidates.

Join our crowdsourcing project.

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