The next president will be responsible for shaping our nation's energy policy and response to global warming, a job that the outgoing president left in the hands of the oil and coal industries. But the hard work of converting the next president's policy vision into political reality lies largely in the hands of 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives and 100 members of the U.S. Senate.
Previously, it's been difficult for voters to learn where candidates for Congress stand on the most important environmental issues facing our country. So the NRDC Action Fund developed a new website, CandidAnswers.org, designed to let you ask your own candidates to answer a five question survey about their position on global warming emissions, renewable energy, nuclear power, public transportation and fuel efficiency standards.
The website has generated some alarming responses on these issues from candidates running for federal office. Some even continue to doubt that global warming is really happening. One candidate from Missouri responded to a question about reducing global warming emissions by saying: "At this point I do not believe that the scientific evidence supports the position that global warming if the same exists, is not a function of sun activity rather than human activity."
Many more candidates with these out-of-touch views are likely on the ballot, yet we the voters have had little to no opportunity to hear what they have to say on pressing environmental issues affecting our lives.
Other candidates who, by and large, have been champions of good climate and energy policies, have not even responded to the survey. Perhaps because not enough of their constituents have asked them.
Have your candidates responded yet?
Simply go to CandidAnswers.org, punch in your zip code, and click to ask the candidates vying to represent you in Congress to answer these important questions. Tomorrow, if they still have not answered, ask them again. Keep asking them, and get your friends and family to ask them, until they do it!
After all, you know where you stand on energy and climate issues. Make the candidates air their views so you can step into the voting booth armed with the information you need to elect leaders who understand the important energy and environmental challenges they'll be working to solve on your behalf.