What’s Amazon hiding?

While competitors move toward renewable energy, Amazon.com refuses to share data on its energy use or environmental impact.

Amazon Logo - Frown Face

greenpeaceIt’s pretty amazing! No matter where we are or what time of day it is, the internet enables us to shop for goods, stay connected with family and friends, and share and enjoy photos, songs, and videos we love — all at lightning speed.

The internet feels so efficient and clean: and in many ways it is. But one company is holding the clean Internet revolution back: Amazon.

Tell Amazon’s Founder and CEO Jeff Bezos to come clean about his company’s energy performance and environmental impact.

And the company has another branch, Amazon Web Services (AWS), that we encounter every day through the websites it hosts — including Netflix, Pinterest, Spotify, and Vine. In fact, every day one third of all internet users visit an Amazon Web Services hosted site.

Yet Amazon is the only major Internet company that hasn’t released ANY data on its energy use or environmental impact. These sites are integral to our daily lives, but they come at a high cost when they’re powered by polluting coal, gas and nuclear power.

That’s why we’re asking you to call on Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to end the secrecy and release AWS’s data on its energy usage.

Other internet companies like Facebook, Google, Apple, and Microsoft regularly publish their energy use data, providing evidence of how these companies are honoring their commitments to renewable energy. This information is key to evaluating which companies are doing all they can to provide a green Internet to customers like you and me.

Amazon could be a leader for our climate. But any pledge for sustainability won’t mean much without the hard numbers. That means first coming clean about how much energy Amazon is using, and where it’s coming from.

Tell Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos to be transparent about AWS’s electricity footprint, and move toward renewable energy. YOUR VOICE IS VITAL to ending the secrecy around his company’s impact on our climate.

We know that together, our voices are powerful. Over past three years — after hearing from supporters like you — both Facebook and Apple have committed to 100% renewable energy, causing major investments in America’s wind and solar energy.

As more and more tech companies switch to clean energy, the industry is poised to make a real impact on avoiding climate catastrophe. But, while competitors like Google and Apple are making the right choices for our communities and climate — Amazon is ignoring the issue.

Now is our time to speak up. Don’t you think its time for Amazon to come clean?

For a greener future,

David Pomerantz
Greenpeace USA Senior Energy Campaigner

P.S. Don’t worry — this email was sent on a clean server. But we now need your voice to make Amazon accountable for ITS carbon footprint. Take action today and be part of something big.


Fight for the Fed

Senator Warren and Senator Merkley need your help. It’s important!

Two Federal Reserve Board seats are open, and the President will soon decide who should fill them.

In addition to setting monetary policy, the Fed is the single most important  financial regulator and has a hugely important role in determining how the financial system works and who it works for.

The makeup of the Fed’s Board of Governors will be felt in countless decisions about whether or not we will have a fairer, simpler, and more stable banking system.

Tell the White House now: nominate Fed Governors with a deep commitment to reform and a hard-nosed understanding of Wall Street’s dangerous ways.

Senators Warren and Merkley put it clearly in a letter to the White House:  “It is critical that the two remaining nominees for the Board be leaders who possess expertise in financial regulation and have demonstrated a strong commitment to financial reform.”

We agree.  So let’s add as many voices as we can to the delivery of this crucial message.

America is still living with the effects of the 2008 financial crisis. Tens of millions of families have suffered the loss of jobs, homes, and massive amounts of household wealth as a result of Wall Street abuses enabled by a generation of bank-coddling regulators. The Fed was a huge culprit, failing to do its job to crack down on predatory lending or high-risk gambling.

Today, the big Wall Street banks are bigger than ever and remain a source of tremendous risk to the economy. Too many of the reforms mandated by the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 have yet to be implemented, and the financial industry is working overtime to derail the process permanently. That makes it more crucial than ever to have Fed governors with a record of standing up for reform.

When the position of Fed Chair was open earlier this year, Senator Warren, Senator Merkley, and countless people like us spoke up, and we knew we had made a tremendous difference when President Obama nominated Janet Yellen instead of Larry Summer.   We can make that kind of difference again.

Tell President Obama to nominate Fed candidates who will stand up for everyday Americans and against Wall Street’s risky behavior.

Thank you for your attention.


Jim Lardner
Americans for Financial Reform

The Middle-Cla​ss Squeeze


The Cost of Key Pillars of Middle Class Security Has Risen By $10,600 Since 2000

We often write about the challenges income inequality poses in helping the middle class get ahead: the wealthiest are taking a bigger and bigger share of income while for most people, wages are stagnating. But there is another side to this equation: the cost of making ends meet is rising fast too, and maintaining a middle-class quality of life is rising along with it. A breakthrough new report by the Center for American Progress analyzes these costs, as well as stagnant incomes, to demonstrate just how much the middle-class has been squeezed this decade.

CAP’s analysis, “The Middle-Class Squeeze,” shows that for a typical median income married couple with two children, the collective cost of basic pillars of middle class security — including child care, higher education, health care, housing, and retirement –rose by an estimated $10,600 between 2000 and 2012. At the same time, incomes have flattened. For this typical family, acquiring middle-class security cost 30 percent more between 2000 and 2012, but they earned less than one percent more.

The report goes into detail about each pillar and recommendations for how alleviate the squeeze, and here some of the key findings:

  • Jobs: Improving our lackluster jobs picture is the first task to address the middle-class squeeze. That means boosting demand by putting money back into the pockets of hard-working Americans. It also means investing in education and workforce-development programs, strengthening unions, and ensuring basic workplace protections to maximize workforce participation.
  • Health care: Health care costs for families have risen dramatically, from $11,790 total to over $20,000. An average family of four’s premium and out-of-pocket costs have on average almost doubled, from $4,600 to $8,600 per year. The Affordable Care Act has already made a difference for millions of Americans, but there is plenty more to be done to cut costs while making sure people have access to high-quality coverage.
  • Child care:Child care is more expensive than median rent in all 50 states. The estimated cost of a high-quality public preschool program ranges from $6,500 to $11,000 — a cost that is simply out of reach for many families. To address this, among a number of important policies, the federal government should partner with states to provide high-quality preschool to all 3- and 4-year-olds.
  • Higher education: While income is staying the same or even declining among families, the cost of higher education has skyrocketed. From 2000 to 2012, higher education costs have risen 62 percent. We must restore public investment in higher ed, through programs such as Pell grants, to help low- and lower-middle-income students.
  • Housing:The cost of owning a home has risen, on average, nearly $3,000: from $10,200 to $13,000 per year. Half of renters spend over 30 percent of their income on rent. New mortgages are at a 17-year low, with many middle-class families locked out of the market.
  • Retirement: While the costs of other essentials increase, it is no surprise that saving for retirement has become much more difficult for those in the middle class. Now, approximately half of all American households in danger of having insufficient savings for retirement.

These middle class pillars are driving how much Americans can spend on other more basic things as well. CAP’s report found that as a result of this middle-class squeeze, a typical middle-class family had $5,500 less for basic necessities like groceries, clothing, and emergency savings by 2012, compared to 2000.

BOTTOM LINE: The United States’ middle class used to be the world’s wealthiest. But the combination of stalled income and rising costs for essential pillars of middle class life have made that no longer the case. Middle class families are the driver of economic growth in this country. But now the middle class is being squeezed, and squeezing American opportunity and economic growth along with it.

Women in the US need the “Women’s Health Protection Act.”


join Daily Kos and the National Partnership for Women & Families to encourage your senators to co-sponsor the Women’s Health Protection Act. Click here to sign and send the petition.
Attacks on women’s health are happening all across the country.

  • Louisiana just tried to close ALL the state’s abortion clinics;
  • At least ten states require ultrasounds for women seeking abortion care, even when doctors say there’s no need;
  • The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill last month that could end insurance coverage for abortion;
  • The Supreme Court will soon decide whether bosses can undermine the Affordable Care Act and endanger women’s health by denying their employees insurance coverage for birth control without co-pays;
  • And last year, states enacted the second-highest number of abortion restrictions… ever!

They are relentless, reckless and morally reprehensible.
The good news is that there’s a way to fight back: the Women’s Health Protection Act.
The Women’s Health Protection Act would allow women to make personal health care decisions unhindered by medically unnecessary restrictions designed to make it harder to access abortion care.
So please join Daily Kos and the National Partnership for Women & Families to encourage your Senators to become co-sponsors of the Women’s Health Protection Act. Please click here to sign and send the petition to your Senators.
Keep fighting, Rachel Colyer, Daily Kos

Defeat :::::: Anti Woman Agenda :::::::: a repost from 2013

NARAL Pro-Choice America

Want to know the kind of world we live in? We live in a world where extremist groups actually brag about becoming a “political machine” to be able to more effectively marginalize and actually endanger women who don’t agree with them.

The Susan B. Anthony List is one such group. And this organization is raising millions of dollars to test its power in Virginia’s 2013 gubernatorial race — with the intention of electing a slate of anti-woman candidates in 2014. And we know this will only lead to even more horrific state-level anti-choice laws in states across the country.

We have to match them dollar for dollar  to protect women, to protect choice, and to protect our constitutional freedom. Will you help us stand up to the SBA List and other anti-choice organizations like them?

SBA List’s positions are like a greatest-hits collection of anti-choice, anti-woman zealotry. They’ve called Todd Akin “an excellent partner.” They said they supported former Senate candidate Richard Mourdock’s comments about pregnancy from rape that “life is always a gift from God.” They even defended Virginia’s forced ultrasound bill.

The SBA List is raising millions of dollars to elect a governor in Virginia who will try to pass even more extreme laws. And it’s coming for states across the country.

I’m trying to stop them. Will you help me stop them, and protect choice at all levels?

Ilyse G. Hogue President, NARAL Pro-Choice America