Let's not kid ourselves -- executive actions alone will not prevent climate change. We need Americans across the country to take actions and become a part of the climate solution.
Indeed, The Civil Rights Act of 1964 -- a very important piece of legislation -- did not in and of itself, solve the problem. What was needed was community action from the local level that helped change the hearts and minds of Americans.
That's what we need on climate change. We need more than executive actions. We need President Obama to tap into his inner Community-Organizer-In-Chief and help capture the hearts and minds of the American people and engage them in climate solutions.
The climate battle needs to be waged on two fronts -- with tough regulations such as the president proposed today. But also, -- and perhaps most importantly -- we need to engage in communities across the nation, through community organizing on the ground.
So while the politicians are fighting in Washington -- let's use good old-fashioned community outreach to educate all Americans on how to be energy smart with everyday actions in their homes -- and make every American a piece of the climate solution!
Each one of us can and should be part of the solution, not through messages of deprivation and no air conditioning, but rather by showing people how simple every day actions can help make a difference. Each of our consumer purchases can help save money, energy and ultimately the planet. Some quick ideas:
- Your flat screen TV -- even when it's off, it's still drawing power and using energy. And worse -- costing you money. Put your TV on a power strip and flip the power switch off when you're done watching TV.
- Unplug your cell phone chargers when they're not powering your phone, iPad, iPod, etc. Each one of those is costing you about $10 per year in energy -- when it's not charging your gadgets!
- Wash your clothes in cold water. Your clothes will be just as clean, and you'll be saving a heap with every pile of wash.
The point is -- we can all be part of the climate solution. This isn't simply a problem fixed in Washington. It's a challenge that each one of us can rise to and help solve.
Washington solutions are only a piece of the puzzle. Mr. President -- let's get out across the country and win this climate battle by engaging the American people! Let's educate and empower every American to help address climate change right in their own backyard.
Follow Brian F. Keane on Twitter: www.twitter.com/SmartPower_org