On Letterman, Challenging Obama to go Solar

Ready for a road trip? Now, I know, traditionally a road trips is the type of thing us fossil-fuel saving climate advocates are supposed to avoid, but this one is for a good cause, I swear. Starting next week, Bill McKibben and a group of Unity College students will drive one of Jimmy Carter’s original White House solar panels from its current home in Maine back to the White House. Better yet, the van they’re driving it runs on bio-diesel, so emissions won’t be as high as they could be.

But here’s why we think those extra carbon emissions are worth it: the Carter panel is a potent symbol of a road not taken in American history. Carter put solar panels on the White House roof in 1979 only to have them taken down by President Reagan just seven years later. Now, we’re challenging Obama to put solar back on the White House — I mean, seriously, if we could do it 31 years ago when bell bottoms were in style, we should definitely be able to do it now.

Last night, Bill was on the David Letterman show (score!) to kick off the trip in style. Check it out:

You can stay up to speed with the road trip by visiting our Put Solar On It website. Putting up panels on the White House is just a small step, but it comes with a clear message for Obama: now’s the time to show some real leadership on clean energy and get to work solving the climate crisis.


About Jamie


Jamie is the co-coordinator of 350.org, an international global warming campaign. A recent college graduate, he lives in San Francisco, CA. In 2007, he co-organized Step It Up, a campaign that pulled together over 2,000 climate rallies across the United States to push for strong climate action at the federal level. He's also an early member of the youth climate movement, leading one of Energy Action's first campaigns in 2005: Road to Detroit, a nationwide veggie-oil bus tour to promote sustainable transportation. He's traveled to Montreal and Bali to lobby the UN with youth, but he's a strong believer that change happens in the streets not in meetings. Jamie received the Morris K. Udall award in 2007 and has been recognized by the mighty state of Vermont for his work on climate change. You can also find him blogging at Campus Progress' "Pushback," Changents.com, and 350.org.

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