Well, as we know down here, sometimes when it rains, it hurricanes!
While NOLA is pretty-much transfixed by Mardi Gras, we're also juggling a few different important opportunities to help protect & restore the coastal environments that created this amazing culture.
If you love the Gulf, we need you to take part in these efforts this week to defend it! Keep an eye on our FB page, or our twitter feed for reminders and updates.
Today: Click for GRN at Bamboo Bottle Co - help us become the 1%! They've got a cool new product they're rolling out, and are selecting one non-profit to share 1% of their proceeds with. While they're all great groups, your vote for GRN can put us over the top! (Hint, you can also do a couple other of these items today if you've got a few minutes).
Tuesday: Tell the Senate to keep the Keystone XL pipeline killed. This project is a horrible idea, and has been called the "fuse to the biggest carbon bomb on the planet". It also threatens critical drinking water supplies, and ultimately ends on the Texas Gulf Coast, providing dirty
bitumen 'oil sands' to significantly increase our refinery pollution. Thanks to amazing organizing from our friends (and supported by some Gulf coast activists), the President decided to deny the project. Unfortunately Senators in bed with big-oil are reviving the fight, and may take it to the floor this week. Tell them to keep Keystone dead!
Wednesday: The Senate may be voting on the RESTORE Act to send BP's Clean Water Act fines to the Gulf for restoration and recovery. If you've been a GRN supporter for even a little while, you've seen our efforts to pass the RESTORE Act, to make sure that the ecosystem and communities fouled by BP's historic oil spill will recieve the bulk of the historic Clean Water Act fines that BP is on the hook for (as much as $21b, a little bit less than the $24b BP made in profits this year). This bipartisan effort has cleared a key Senate committee, but has failed to move to the Senate floor. That may change this week, as part of the consideration of the Senate transportation bill the full RESTORE Act could be brought up for a vote. Please tell your Senators to back the bill!
Thursday: Whatever happens with the RESTORE Act, pressure is on BP and the Federal government to settle the civil trial that they are currently gearing up for. It's set to start Feb 27th in NOLA, and BP would likely prefer to keep all their horrible decisions out of the public record. Call the White House and ask them to hold a hard-line for the Gulf, and walk away from any settlment offer that fails to fully protect and restore this critical treasure.
Friday: Support your state! Louisiana's Master Plan for a Sustainable Coast needs your support, or help our coalition block drilling off Mississippi's Barrier Islands, or help protect Florida's water! Whatever Gulf state you call home (or care most about) could use your help!
That's it. 5 days, 5 simple actions to send some love to the Gulf. To paraphrase well-known consumer advocate, "The Gulf has far more problems than it deserves and far more solutions than it applies." Thanks so much for helping us stop some problems, and apply some solutions this week.
Aaron is GRN's Deputy Director. Follow him on twitter here.