169 businesses and organizations around the Midwest send letter to Pres. Obama applauding his Climate Action Plan

MADISON — Today, 169 businesses and organizations from six Midwest states, including numerous Wisconsin businesses and numerous religious and health organizations here, sent a letter to President Obama thanking him for the Climate Action Plan he laid out in June. The letter emphasized the importance of the President’s directive to EPA to develop carbon pollution standards for existing power plants.

As reminders that climate change is upon us, the letter cited record flooding in parts of the Midwest this spring, less than one year after devastating drought over much of the region last summer and fall. “We look forward to working with you, EPA and Midwestern electric utilities to meet this challenge,” the signatories wrote to the President.

Much of the letter is focused on recent extreme weather, adverse health impacts brought about by climate change, and how the region’s low-income communities are especially susceptible to climate change impacts.

“We appreciate the President’s leadership in offering a comprehensive yet practical plan to address climate change,” said Rev. Scott Anderson, executive director of the Wisconsin Council of Churches, which represents over 2,000 congregations in the state. “Those of us who live in the Midwest are feeling especially vulnerable to the deleterious effects of recent changes in our weather patterns. The time to act is now.”

In addition, the letter highlights how carbon pollution standards can boost the Midwest’s manufacturing industry. “The Midwest can, and should, be the world’s leader in manufacturing the clean energy technologies that meet our future energy needs and protect future generations,” says Keith Reopelle, senior policy director for Clean Wisconsin.

The letter stresses the need to make the carbon pollution standards as cost-effective as possible and points out that the longer we wait to regulate carbon pollution, the more expensive it becomes.