To the Co-Chairs of the Commission on Presidential Debates
The officials elected in November will take office in the midst of multiple converging crises – including a climate rapidly spinning out of control. In the last four weeks alone we’ve seen the impact of the climate crisis increase in frequency and intensity from coast to coast in the form of wildfires in the West and Hurricanes Isaias, Laura, and Sally.
For more than 30 years it has been our company’s mission to create a more healthy, sustainable and equitable life on this planet for generations to come. In 2020, this takes on a new meaning and immediacy. It is not just about future generations, but the next generation.
Climate isn’t up for debate. As you prepare for the 2020 presidential debates, we urge you to call attention to the issue of climate justice and the climate crisis we’re facing. Climate inaction is already having a devastating impact on communities across the globe, and will further impact this next generation – those not yet old enough to cast a vote in this upcoming election, but who will be most impacted by its outcomes.
Our ask is simple, but imperative: ensure climate is a core pillar of all 2020 presidential debates. This does not mean debating the science, but facilitating debates that acknowledge the best available science of the climate crisis and push the candidates on how they will lead us out of this crisis. It means dedicating a significant portion of time during each debate to address the intersection of the climate crisis with other critical issues facing our country, from the economy to healthcare to national security.
Scientists have never been in more agreement: this is a crisis we need to address now, with less than a decade remaining to take meaningful action on climate. We implore you to use the debate stage to prioritize climate and facilitate meaningful discussion on how to collectively work toward a healthier future, including policies and action that support:
- 100% clean and renewable energy, economy-wide, by 2030
- The creation of jobs and investment in infrastructure and industry that are just, equitable and support clean air and water for all communities
- Action in the name of justice and equity that focuses on stopping current, preventing future and repairing the historic oppression of communities on the front lines of the climate crisis, including communities of color, indigenous peoples, rural communities, low-income communities and displaced workers.
As a company deeply committed to building a healthier future, everything we do is in service of this and future generations. We also believe business can and must be a force for good. We have an important role in holding ourselves accountable for the impact we have, as well as working to help collectively move us to a better, healthier and more equitable world.
As you prepare for the debates, we ask that you keep in mind those who are not yet old enough to cast a vote, but who will live with the decisions made by our elected leaders for the rest of their lives.
We ask you to think of the future, and of those who will live for the next seven generations to come.
We ask you to think of those who are voting for the future they want, with the health of our climate in mind.
There’s no debate – the climate crisis is real, and it is impacting us all. During the debates and this election season please give climate the attention it deserves, for the sake of the American people now and for the benefit of our next generation.
CEO, Seventh Generation
Joey Bergstein joined Seventh Generation in 2011 and, together with the Seventh Generation team, has been transforming its business, while pursuing the company’s quest to transform the world into a healthier, more sustainable and more equitable place for all.