Incoming boss of Greenpeace USA, Phil Radford, took a break to speak to Off-Grid about his aims for the organisation.
He praised Americans living off-grid for showing a way forward that everyone could follow. “We have a short time to make dramatic changes in society’s use of energy,” he said.
“People with or without permission need to be putting up solar panels and wind turbines, whether they are off-grid or on the grid.”
Phil Radford’s main enemy: companies like ExxonMobil and Southern Energy “that will fight to the death against any action on global warming,” he said. For evidence, “we have the (internal) memo that says their mission is to create uncertainty” about global warming. “They spent their money to undermine the scientific consensus.”
Radford comes from a religious background (like the newly appointed head of the UK branch of Friends of the Earth). Does his appointment herald a much closer relationship between environmental activists and the Christian movement?
“I hope it will,” Phil told me. “I think it may.”
He stressed there have always been “people of all faiths in the green movement. “ But “what’s new in the past decade is the strong leadership from religious leaders taking this issue seriously” such as the Creation Care group.
Phil said he would be working through the Green Group of eco-minded leaders from all walks of life to forge alliances across the religious movement as well as a variety of secular groups
“ We want a 40% cut in greenhouse-gas emissions below 1990 levels. President Obama’s committed to a return to 1990 levels, but he’s also shown tremendous leadership. So our job is to show him the moral high ground and give him the support to take that stand.
“The acid test is whether he can persuade Congress to pass the cap and trade Bill this year.”
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