Bloggers and the New Green Economy

This is a workshop, not a panel, where we will be learning about how bloggers and support activists and organize to help create a New Green Economy. This is a rather timely forum on the heels of the Public Utilities Commission approving a 4.93 billion-dollar plan to move renewable energy from West Texas to more populated areas.

Dave Johnson, Susana Almanza, Larry Joe Doherty, and Jeff Sharp.

They start by asking for brainstorming ideas as to how blogs help support positive economic development efforts. Dave Johnson is moderating, and he blogs at Seeing The Forest -- and has for the last six years (Ed. note: that's a lot of blogging). Susana Almanza is part of People Organized in Defense of Earth and her Resources, also known as PODER. PODER looks at the green economy not only as a economical factor but also a social justice issue -- advocating for educating younger people in lower socioeconomic classes about green living and the importance of not only living that way but seeking out the jobs that are becoming available within the green sector.

Larry Joe Doherty is also here, not only as a candidate for Congress, but also as a concerned citizen who puts the value of open spaces and land preservation ahead of special interests and partisan politics. He is also a past president of the Washington County Wildlife Society and a member of the Texas Wildlife Association and a past member of the Texas Quail Council, which promotes the conservation and restoration of wild quail in Texas.

Adam Segal blogs at GetEnergySmartNow, on everything from things people can do in their own home to help reduce their energy usage to national policy ideas. He mentions we need to reduce our energy illteracy, something that he himself struggles with. Jeff Sharp is the director of new media communications for Congressman Ed Markey (D, MA-7), who is on the Energy and Commerce Committee, and on the Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming. He emphasizes that bloggers need to continue to push for renewable energy, and advocate it, because they are the only ones who can fight effectively against the special interests. This ties in to the forum I just went to -- bloggers are becoming the new lobbying force for DC.

Larry Joe Doherty, Jeff Sharp and Adam Segal look on as
Barry Kendall takes notes while audiencemembers brainstorm
on how bloggers can help advocate for a green economy.

A woman poses a question about Congress providing people who cannot afford computers with the hand-me-down pieces of technology from bloggers so that other people can then start to advocate. Larry Joe mentions that he is in favor of streaming meetings with lobbyists, eliminating the closed-door policies of the past and allowing constituents and bloggers alike to see exactly what lobbyists are proposing so they can immediately comment and have their voices be heard. He gets a round of applause for that.

Here are some of the links to the websites that were discussed in the brainstorming session:

Larry Joe Doherty - Donate here.
Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming
Get Energy Smart Now - Donate here.
Seeing the Forest
Commonweal Institute
Green For All
Reverb Rock
Native Energy
The Observer
Grist Mill
We Can Solve It
Green for All
Reef Stewardship Foundation
Renew Solar and Wind Incentives Now - Facebook Group

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