Environmentalists had a chance to make their case for the Democratic party’s official stance on climate change on Friday, in front of the Democratic National Committee’s platform planning commission.
Green groups have been largely split on the Democratic presidential nomination, with larger, mainstream organizations endorsing Hillary Clinton and smaller, leftist groups going for Sanders. The League of Conservation Voters and Sierra Club, which endorsed Clinton, sent representatives, while the pro-Sanders crowd included Mark Ruffalo, Gasland director Josh Fox, and Friends of the Earth President Erich Pica.
The Sanders contingent pushed for the DNC to call for a ban on fracking, a position Clinton has come up short of endorsing.
“Natural gas is 100 times more damaging a greenhouse gas, heat-trapping gas, than CO2 in a 70-year period, which makes it particularly dangerous,” Ruffalo said. “We can’t seem to be able to keep it from leaking no matter how hard we try and where we try to do it. Any kind of gains we thought we were making by transitioning to natural gas have basically exploded in our faces.”
Pica outlined Friends of the Earth’s recommendations to the DNC, asking for a commitment to climate justice, an end to fossil fuel subsidies, and to phase out public financing for fossil fuel projects abroad.
“We are at a generational — if not historic — tipping point for the planet and its inhabitants,” Pica said.
Now, the question is, what is the DNC going to do about it?