Way back before the holiday season, we posted our lists of green heroes and green villains for 2008. Because we are totally Web 3.7 participatorynewmediacroudsourcingcitizenjournalist types, we even opened it up to your votes!
So you voted. And voted, and voted. Then, on Jan. 8, we warned you: only 24 hours left to vote!
Turns out we really meant, er, 24 days. Give or take a week. So you voted some more. But now voting’s really closed! For realz. And, without further ado (or delay), we’re ready to declare winners.
With 730 votes … the Grist 2008 Eco-Hero of the Year is … [drum roll]
The Sierra Club’s Bruce Nilles! [crowd roars]
Nilles is director of the Sierra Club’s National Coal Campaign, which has helped coordinate the extraordinary grassroots movement that’s sprung up in the last few years to fight against new coal plants. This victory for Nilles is really a victory for that movement, which has — with very little help from the establishment or resources from big-money funders — pulled off an amazing string of victories that is still going on. Nice job, movement. And nice job, Bruce.
And now, turning to less pleasant matters:
With 405 votes … the Grist 2008 Eco-Villain of the year is …
Flaccid Apparatchik Stephen Johnson! [boos, angry shouts]
Johnson, who most everybody thought would be a harmless technocrat, turned out to be one of the worst U.S. EPA administrators in the nation’s history, blatantly ignoring the advice of EPA staff and scientists in order to carry out the political hatchet jobs handed down by Dick Cheney. We will miss writing headlines about you, Mr. Johnson. But that’s about all we will miss.
Onward to 2009 [already in progress]!