Clean energy, the green jobs it creates, and improved health drove panelists’ discussions and sparked numerous questions at LCLAA’s Education Conference this week. The Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) annual event drew more than 400 participants from across the U.S. to San Juan, Puerto Rico.
The “Green Jobs and Public Health: How Environmental Protection Can Save Lives and Create Jobs” panel hosted speakers from The Center for American Progress, National Latino Coalition on Climate Change (NLCCC), The Transport Workers Union of America, AREVA, and The National Puerto Rican Coalition. Mark Magana, from the Hispanic Strategy Group, moderated the Q&A.
To set the stage for discussion, each panelist spoke on a topic for 10 minutes, including: legislative issues and the Clean Air Act; the impact of fossil fuels on air pollution and health; transitioning away from fossil fuels; using Clean Energy technologies (nuclear, solar, wind, biomass, hydrogen energy storage) as economic and employment catalysts; and opposition to a proposed 92-mile natural gas line across Puerto Rico.
Once the panel opened up for questions, audience members quickly delved deeper into how to engage policymakers; which renewable resources are available on Puerto Rico; and how to prepare and encourage children and youth in clean energy careers.
The conference theme came through in the final call to action for session attendees to do three things:
1. Educate themselves on clean energy options, 2. Spread that knowledge by educating their families, friends and organizations about clean energy benefits, and 3. Speak up as clean energy advocates and inform their policymaker representatives on the economic opportunities, health benefits, and workforce growth potential with clean energy projects.
Check the conference website for soon-to-be-posted videos, photos and presentations.