Happy New Year
by Philip Radford
January 8, 2010
As I look forward to 2010 and embrace the year ahead, I can’t help but get a little nostalgic. I find myself looking back at the last year and reminiscing about where we’ve been and what we’ve accomplished together.
It was my first year as Greenpeace’s Executive Director, and I started my job in typical Greenpeace style – by locking myself to a crane ladder high above Washington, DC to call attention to world leaders about the dangers of global warming.
That was just the first of many actions Greenpeace took this year to highlight the dire urgency of global warming. We “installed” wind turbines in "the Windy City," hung banners off of bridges in Pittsburgh, created a climate crime scene outside the Chamber of Commerce in Washington DC, and unveiled 50,000 of your signatures in a giant banner underneath President Obama’s helicopter as he returned home from Oslo.
And of course, Greenpeace activists scaled Mount Rushmore to hang President Obama’s face alongside the faces of the former presidents with the message that read, “America Honors Leaders, not Politicians: Stop Global Warming.” The eleven brave activists recently convicted of climbing Mt. Rushmore will each pay a fine of $460 and will perform community service in the National Park system. One activist, Matt Leonard, served two days in jail because of his past civil disobedience work.
I’m proud of our activists and everything they did in 2009, but as I look back over the year, I’m even more impressed by what YOU have been able to accomplish this year:
• Kimberly-Clark agreed not to cut ancient forests to make Kleenex and other products and set a new standard for the global paper industry.
• The House of Representatives passed landmark chemical security legislation.
• Timberland and Nike, after receiving hundreds of comments from you, helped force cattle and leather industry giants to protect the Amazon Rainforest.
• Clorox Company announced plans to convert all of its U.S. factories from dangerous chlorine gas to safer chemical processes.
I can’t emphasize enough the enormous impact of these victories, or thank you enough for helping to achieve them.
I know that 2010 will bring many challenges our way, and I’m confident that Greenpeace is uniquely equipped to deal with them. But we can’t succeed without your help!
My New Year’s resolution is to close the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant, pass chemical security legislation in the Senate and to convince Trader Joe’s to listen to their customers and adopt sustainable seafood policies. Will you help me make my New Year’s resolutions come true?
I can’t thank you enough for your support in 2009, and I’m really looking forward to all that 2010 has in store for us.