Children protected from tobacco, Phthalates banned in toys, and wolves saved in Montana – these are just a few of the successful campaigns Care2 members and partners have been involved in this summer.
Congratulations to all of you who have been involved in these efforts! Some of these wins have been years in the making, and some are only stepping stones for bigger change to come – but all are worth taking a moment to celebrate.
As Catherine II said, “A great wind is blowing and that gives you either imagination or a headache.” Change is in the air with all these good stories, so we should have a lot of inspired Care2 members, and probably some politicians and corporations feeling the pain.
Public Citizen reports:
“President Bush signed into law strong product safety reform legislation that will overhaul the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Lead and toxic phthalates will be essentially eliminated from toys and children's products. Consumers will have an Internet database where they can share information with each other about dangerous products. Toys will be tested for safety before they're sold, so our children aren't treated like guinea pigs. Whistleblowers will be free to alert the public to important safety problems without fear of reprisal from their employers”
Defenders of Wildlife sent this great update:
“A federal judge has restored endangered species protections for wolves in Greater Yellowstone and the Northern Rockies. The ruling by a district court judge in Montana temporarily halts state-condoned wolf killing and could save the lives of hundreds of wolves by stopping this fall's planned wolf sport hunting seasons in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.”
Care2 members have sent over 300,000 signatures to federal officials in the past few years to maintain Endangered Species Act protections for America's recovering wolves. Tens of thousands of us protested the Bush administration's recent decision to delist Greater Yellowstone area wolves.
Northern Boreal forest saved
Forest Ethics celebrated another important win:
“Ontario's government announced … that it will protect nearly half of the province's vast Northern Boreal forest from industrial development! This is huge news -- we're talking about an area half the size of California, or six times the size of Belgium. That's 55 million acres (22.5 million hectares) of the largest intact forest remaining on Earth now protected from development.”
Care2 members have submitted over 40,000 signatures in support of protecting the boreal forest. This agreement is one of the largest conservation commitments in history, and your activism helped make it happen.
Kids protected from tobacco
Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids announced July 30th:
“The U.S. House of Representatives today cast a truly historic vote to protect children from tobacco addiction and save lives by overwhelmingly approving legislation granting the U.S. Food and Drug Administration authority to regulate tobacco products. This is the first time the House has ever approved such legislation. Today's vote by a clear veto-proof margin of 326 to 102 underscores the broad, bipartisan support for this legislation and provides powerful momentum for enacting it into law this year.”
Farm animal win
WSPA reports victory for farm animals in New Jersey:
“A coalition of groups including several WSPA member societies have won a major victory for farm animals in New Jersey that has the potential to improve the lives of millions of animals around the US. The coalition, led by Farm Sanctuary, filed suit against the New Jersey Department of Agriculture (NJDA ) alleging that NJDA standards exempt many factory farming practices as "humane" simply because they are widely used. In July the New Jersey Supreme Court voted unanimously to overturn these exemptions and ordered the NJDA to reassess their standards. This victory not only will improve the lives of thousands of farm animals in New Jersey but also sets an important legal precedent in the US.”
Clean Air Act reinforced
EarthJustice reported on August 19th:
“A federal appeals court today struck down an Environmental Protection Agency rule that exempted major industrial polluters from accurately measuring dangerous emissions. The court held that EPA violated the Clean Air Act in allowing the largest air pollution sources to avoid monitoring, recording and recordkeeping of air pollution emissions needed to assure compliance with clean air laws. The EPA rule actually barred permitting agencies from requiring any of these activities in clean air permits.”
More Environmental Education
National Wildlife Federation reports:
“Congress and President Bush recently granted a huge victory for environmental education by approving the Higher Education Sustainability Act, which will help colleges develop academic programs that address sustainability and aid campuses in becoming more energy-efficient. Congress is still scheduled to vote on legislation to improve environmental education in America's elementary and high schools in the coming month.”
Pets protected in foreclosures
The ASPCA sponsored this CA legislation and reports:
“The ASPCA would like to congratulate the California Legislature for addressing this issue with the swift passage of Assembly Bill 2949, which amends California’s Civil Code to require property owners—including banks or other corporate entities—to immediately notify animal control officials when animals are abandoned at foreclosed properties.”
Costco joins the Green List
Oceana achieved another victory, announcing:
“Great news! After more than 8,000 WaveMakers contacted Costco Wholesale stores, the company agreed to post warning signs about mercury at its seafood counters. This victory brings us to 36% of major grocery stores nationwide on the "Green List" of stores that our Campaign to Stop Seafood Contamination has convinced to post the FDA mercury advice. “
Care2 members sent over 4,000 letters to Costco’s CEO, Jim Sinegal, as part of this campaign.
Right Whales win rights
Defenders of Wildlife celebrates another win:
“The world’s last remaining North Atlantic right whales won an important victory last month. A federal court held that the Coast Guard must ensure that shipping routes into east coast ports will not negatively impact these struggling marine mammals. Ship strikes cause at least three deaths per year, and with only 350 of these whales left, even the loss of one brings these animals closer to extinction.”
Housing Relief Bill
Habitat for Humanity reported a mid-summer win:
“After the Senate and House passed a sweeping housing relief bill, President Bush signed the bill into law earlier this week. This is a major victory, particularly given that the new law contains 100 percent of the provisions we have been fighting for - including $4 billion in neighborhood stabilization funding and the national housing trust fund.”
Everglades gets sweet relief
Our friends at National Wildlife Federation sent good news:
“Last week, Florida Governor Charlie Crist announced the purchase of 187,000 acres of land critical to the Everglades ecosystem from the country's largest sugar grower. This purchase will help to jumpstart the stalled $10-billion Everglades restoration project, marking a huge victory for wildlife!”
Sage-Grouse victory in Wyoming
“The head-long rush for energy development on Western federal lands has long raised Audubon concerns about the fate of declining sage grouse populations. Audubon Wyoming, and ultimately the full resources of Audubon, stepped into the fray with a better approach. [A new Executive order issued by WY Governor Dave Freudenthal] sets a strong precedent for the state's policy on how to protect Wyoming's populations of Greater Sage-grouse. The ‘Sage-grouse Core Area Plan’ clearly delineates habitat areas that are critical to maintaining sage-grouse breeding populations. The order offers guidance to state agencies like the Department of State Lands on how to continue operating in a manner that conserves prime sage grouse habitat.”
Limits on CO2 from Coal power plants
The Sierra Club shared more good news for the Clean Air Act:
“In an unprecedented move, a Georgia state court ruled last week in a case brought by the Sierra Club and Friends of the Chattahoochee that a new Dynegy coal plant must limit the amount of carbon dioxide it releases. This is the first time any court has applied the Supreme Court's ruling last year that carbon dioxide, the principal source of global warming, is a pollutant under the federal Clean Air Act. ‘Coal-fired power plants emit more than 30 percent of our nation's global warming pollution,’ said Bruce Nilles, Director of the Sierra Club's National Coal Campaign. ‘Thanks to this decision, coal plants across the country will be forced to live up to their clean-coal rhetoric.’”
National Parks protected from illegal off-road vehicle use
“Bluewater Network--a coalition of Friends of the Earth, the National Parks Conservation Association, and Wildlands CPR--announced that we have reached a settlement agreement with the National Park Service. Under the settlement, the Park Service will implement a pilot program focused on public education and deterrence at 10 national parks. To help stop illegal use of off-road vehicles, those 10 parks will conduct special public outreach, education, and enforcement activities over the next three years, by training officers and working to set fines high enough to create a deterrence.”
U.S. commits $15 Billion diseases
In July, the ONE campaign announced this important victory:
“This new PEPFAR [President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief] is going to do a whole lot of good for millions of people. It will provide care for 12 million AIDS patients, including five million orphans. It contains massive increases in investments in fighting TB and malaria, two diseases that are at their most devastating in the world's poorest countries. And in places desperate for doctors and nurses, PEPFAR will provide training for 140,000 new healthcare professionals.”
Humpbacks Protected from whaling
Longtime Care2 partner, WSPA, reports:
“WSPA and whales around the world scored a significant victory at the 60th meeting of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) in Chile when the majority of member countries voted against Greenland's request to add 10 humpback whales to their whaling quota. Since 1986 the IWC has imposed a ban on commercial whaling - meaning that member countries are not permitted to hunt for commercial profit. Yet a recent investigation by WSPA revealed that 25% of whales killed by Greenland are sold commercially. The report provided IWC commissioners with the information they needed to deny Greenland's request - a great step forward in WSPA's campaign to end all forms of whaling around the globe.”
Old growth Sequoias protected
The Sierra Club celebrated another victory in June:
“Just a week ago we saw the end to the Sierra Club’s three year long battle with the timber industry, preventing them - once and for all - from logging in the Giant Sequoia National Monument. The win came at the 11th hour, as the Sierra Club legal team prepared to appear in the Ninth Circuit court to argue the last case standing, a last-ditch appeal by the timber industry, regarding commercial logging in the Monument. But on the eve of the hearing, they abandoned and withdrew their appeal - putting the final nail in the coffin of this very drawn out case - and putting an end to the pillage of these iconic trees.”
Congratulations on these, and many other, important wins this summer!