Category Archives: Op-eds

Citizens Lobby Congress

Marshall
Founder Marshall Saunders

Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL) is laser focused on, and extremely effective in lobbying members of congress, one-on-one, applying pressure for carbon fee and dividend legislation — a revenue-neutral carbon tax.  Most all economists agree that a carbon tax is the cheapest, simplest, and by far most effective policy for reducing carbon emissions.  The new report from Regional Economic Models, Inc (REMI) further support CCL’s position.

Let’s apply the CarbonTax Workshop (CTW) evaluation metric to Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL).

  1. CCL does an excellent job defining, (1) the problem, (2) CCL’s proposed solution Carbon Fee and Dividend, and (3) why CCL’s climate solution is the most effective, simple, realistic, and scalable.  Score: 10.
  2. CCL’s message is focused, direct, and convincing.  The organization membership is doubling in size every year. Score: 10.
  3. CCL’s first priority is direct lobbying and secondarily works to expand membership.  Expanding membership is probably tough since many people are not comfortable writing strongly worded letters to the editor, and speaking to members of Congress and their staffers.  CCL is mentioned frequently in climate-related news, and has started popping up in google ads.  Perhaps there is more that could be done in a membership campaign.  CCL’s membership could potentially benefit from new mobilization approaches developed by CTW.  Score: 9.

Overall CTW score is 29.  CCL is actively seeking new members for direct and indirect lobbying.

Below is background lifted from the CCL website.

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Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL) is a 7-year old, nonprofit, grassroots volunteer organization focused exclusively on passing a revenue-neutral carbon fee and dividend (CFD) to address climate change. CCL provides its members with tool kits for direct lobbying of local and national elected representatives and their staffs; conducts monthly actions and conference calls with experts to expand members’ personal political power; trains them in placement of public comments in print media and in building relationships with editorial boards, and organizes at a grass-roots level to build consensus. CCL empowers individuals to find their voice in the climate debate.

Last year, CCL volunteers conducted 710 meetings with federal legislators. The June, 2014 annual meeting in Washington drew over 600 volunteers who met with 508 Congressional offices over a 3-day period, respectfully listening to their concerns and discussing new economic modeling showing a stimulus effect of a national CFD when 100% of the revenue is returned to households. In 2013, volunteers published 1270 Letters to the Editor and numerous op-eds, reaching an estimated 20 million people, with double that rate this year. CCL met with 46 editorial boards in 2013, resulting in 41 favorable editorials. CCL also engages economists, military leaders and both progressive and conservative think tanks, as well as faith community leaders.

CCL is growing rapidly. Support doubled last year to over 6,000 members in 188 chapters (+ 99 more in formation) covering 329 Congressional districts in 48 states and Canada (June, 2014). CCL aims to have members in all 435 Congressional districts by the end of 2014. New groups are starting in 11 other countries.