Local leaders join together on Capitol Hill to show support for the EPA's Clean Power Plan

Just one month after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized its Clean Power Plan, over 50 influencers from across the United States traveled to Washington, D.C. to urge their elected representatives to support the new standards, which reduce carbon pollution and encourage investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency.

The group of community leaders, which included local officials, business people and health experts, arrived just as lawmakers returned from August recess. They received a briefing on the Clean Power Plan from the White House and the EPA, and had the opportunity to share their perspectives on the plan. In addition, participants attended a training conducted by experienced environmental advocates from Natural Resources Defense Council, National Wildlife Federation, League of Conservation Voters, and Environmental Defense Fund.

Members of the group then dispersed to congressional offices on Capitol Hill to meet with legislators and their staff to urge them to oppose attacks aimed at dismantling the Clean Power Plan.

The next morning, five senators from the Senate Climate Action Task Force held a roundtable discussion with four of the local leaders: Dave Chadwick, Executive Director of the Montana Wildlife Federation; Peter Egelston, President of Smuttynose Brewery; Dr. Tony Owens, an Emergency Medicine Physician from Portland, Maine; and Jill Ryan, Eagle County Commissioner from Edwards, Colorado.

The event provided an opportunity for the participants to speak about the negative impacts of climate change on their state and to tout the heath, environmental, and economic benefits of reducing carbon pollution under the Clean Power Plan in front of an audience of more than 60 people.