Hundreds of business executives are descending on Washington this week in support of a clean energy economy. Calling for investment in American jobs instead of global warming pollution, the CEOs participating in the Business Advocacy Day for Jobs & Competitiveness — an effort organized by the new We Can Lead coalition — will tell the Senate to take action with strong climate legislation like the Clean Energy Jobs Act introduced last week by Sens. John Kerry (D-MA) and Barbara Boxer (D-CA). Several of these companies have written a public letter to Congress and the administration calling for “comprehensive legislation to cut carbon pollution”:

We need you to swiftly enact comprehensive legislation to cut carbon pollution and create an economy-wide cap and trade program. We support this legislation because certainty and rules of the road enable us to plan, build, innovate and expand our businesses. Putting a price on carbon will drive investment into cost-saving, energy-saving technologies, and will create the next wave of jobs in the new energy economy.

Carol Browner, the director of the White House Office of Energy and Climate Change Policy and EPA administrator Lisa Jackson, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency are confirmed speakers before the We Can Lead companies, who will be lobbying Congress on Wednesday, October 7 on behalf of strong climate legislation. Many of the participants in the lobby day have endorsed the House legislation, the American Clean Energy and Security Act, and others have called for even stronger action. In addition, the CEOs are “scheduled to eat dinner with Interior Secretary Ken Salazar on Tuesday, and to hold a White House meeting with Energy Secretary Steven Chu and Commerce Secretary Gary Locke on Wednesday morning.”

Politico reports that “28 companies and labor and green groups — including United Technologies, Johnson & Johnson, GE, Weyerhauser, the Nature Conservancy and the Environmental Defense Action Fund — are launching” a million-dollar ad campaign “in support of comprehensive clean energy and climate change legislation.”

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We Can Lead is a collaboration between the Clean Economy Network, Ceres, and other business groups including:


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Arkansas Business Leaders for Clean Energy Economy
Apollo Alliance
Business Council for Sustainable Energy
Business Forward
Environmental Entrepeneurs
– EDF – Less Carbon More Jobs
– Indiana Businesses for Clean Energy Economy
National Venture Capital Association
– Ohio Business Council for a Clean Economy
– Pennsylvania Business Leaders for a Clean Economy
Renewable Energy Business Network
US Climate Action Network

JR:  Details on the event this a.m. in the White House follow.

On Wednesday, October 7, Energy Secretary Steven Chu and Commerce Secretary Gary Locke will be joined by Assistant to the President for Energy and Climate Change Carol Browner and other top Administration officials in hosting a Clean Energy Economy Forum at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building with business leaders from around the country.  The Administration officials will reiterate the need for a comprehensive energy plan that puts America back in control of its energy future and breaks a dependence on oil that threatens our economy, our environment, and our national security.  They will also have the opportunity to answer questions from and get the perspective of business leaders who have first-hand experience creating jobs while contributing to American energy independence.

Coverage details are below.  The event will also be webcast live at

WHO: U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke

Assistant to the President for Energy and Climate Change Carol Browner

Administration Officials

Clean Energy Business Leaders

WHAT: Clean Energy Economy Forum

WHEN: Wednesday, October 7

(Pre-Set: 8:30 am, Final Gather: 9:15 am.)

WHERE: Eisenhower Executive Office Building