WASHINGTON and MIAMI, -- Two thousand Hispanic business owners from South Florida are asking U.S. Senators Bill Nelson (D-FL) and George LeMieux (R-FL) to take action on comprehensive climate and clean energy legislation.
A group of Florida business leaders will present Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) and George LeMieux (R-FL) with a letter signed by 2,000 South Florida Hispanic owned businesses Wednesday during a fly-in to Washington, D.C. The major outpouring of support is being facilitated by American Businesses for Clean Energy (ABCE), a broad umbrella organization that shows the breadth of business support for clean energy and climate legislation.
Last week, Senators John Kerry (D-MA.) and Joe Lieberman (I-CT.) unveiled the American Power Act, a draft bill designed to get the US on the path towards energy independence.
According to the concerned Florida business leaders, federal legislation on climate and clean energy will give investors in the Sunshine State and elsewhere the certainty they need to invest in clean energy that is needed is to bolster the economy and expand business opportunities, spurring economic growth and creating homegrown jobs in Florida.
"Florida is in the eye of the storm – we look at the Gulf and all we can do is hope the massive oil spill doesn't reach our shores and scare off the millions of tourists who visit them every year," said Dana Sanchez-Quist, a realtor in the Miami/Fort Lauderdale area. "It's time to act. Leadership from President Obama and our Congressional delegation on clean energy and climate is what Florida needs now."
Porfiria "Millie" Ramirez, co-owner of Solar Green Energy Solutions in Miami, said: "Hispanic businesses like mine can lead the way and be part of the start-up of the clean energy economy; this is good for our state and every member of our community. It means we won't have to rely on unstable countries or risky business – like what's happening in the Gulf – for our fuels, and it means our children can grow up in clean neighborhoods breathing clean air. But we need to create incentives for the private sector to invest in order to compete globally. For that, we need legislation."
Alberto Cardona, an engineer in Fort Lauderdale, said: "The alarm has sounded. We have a huge oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico caused by our over-reliance on oil. We cannot afford to wait any longer for a comprehensive energy and climate plan that puts America back in control of its energy future and back in the lead. We can and must develop the technology to move to clean, renewable 21st century energy sources that will never run out. Countries like China are doing it. Why can't we?"
Christopher Van Atten, spokesperson, ABCE said: "I applaud these South Florida business leaders for sending a clear message to the state's elected officials here in Washington. And that message is this: Florida and the rest of the nation need action on climate and clean energy … and they need action now. The businesses that ABCE works with represent a variety of backgrounds and views. What unites all of them is shared agreement on the wisdom of comprehensive clean energy legislation that will create jobs, unleash innovation and make our nation more secure, while cutting greenhouse gas emissions."
The letter signed by the Florida Hispanic business leaders reads as follows: "On behalf of the undersigned Hispanic business owners, local leaders, parent organizations and concerned constituents whom we represent, we urge you to support strong climate and energy legislation. We support Congressional enactment of clean energy and climate legislation that will significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions."
American Businesses for Clean Energy is a broad umbrella organization that shows the breadth of business support for clean energy and climate legislation. ABCE will not develop detailed policy recommendations or evaluate specific proposals since existing business coalitions already address those needs. The ABCE initiative is open to any company or business association that supports Congressional action to pass effective climate and energy legislation now. By joining the initiative, these companies are making a public statement urging Congress to act. To learn more about American Businesses for Clean Energy (ABCE) and to pledge support for clean energy legislation, please visit: http://www.AmericanBusinessesforCleanEnergy.org.
EDITOR'S NOTE: A streaming audio recording of the news event will be available on the Web as of 3 p.m. EDT on May 18, 2010 at http://www.AmericanBusinessesForCleanEnergy.com.
SOURCE American Businesses for Clean Energy