ICYMI: More Than 1,000 Business Leaders Call on Congress to Build Back Better on Climate
White House Press Release: September 27, 2021
This week, more than 1,000 business leaders endorsed President Biden’s Build Back Better Agenda and Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal to tackle the climate crisis, create jobs, and grow the economy.
The American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC), E2 (Environmental Entrepreneurs), and Clean Energy for America (CE4A) organized letters from hundreds of businesses calling on Congress to pass historic investments through reconciliation to combat climate change and make our country stronger and more resilient. Additionally, businesses leaders are recognizing the importance of revenue measures to pay for the historic investments – with prominent American companies like Patagonia saying they are “willing to pay a higher corporate tax rate.”
ASBC’s letter had over 300 businesses join, E2’s letter had over 400 signatures, and CE4A’s letter included investors, business owners, and workers in the clean energy industry. Companies signing onto letters included Ben and Jerry’s, Clif Bar, Dr. Bronner’s, Eileen Fisher, Grove Collaborative, Naturepedic, Patagonia, Seventh Generation, Stonyfield, Trillium Asset Management, and more.
Noting the outpouring of support from business leaders, Cedric Richmond, Senior Advisor to the President and Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement, said: “It’s an encouraging sign that over 1,000 business leaders have stepped up over the past few days to acknowledge that climate change is here and is already impacting all of us. They’ve also acknowledged that we know what we have to do in order to solve this crisis: we need to advance the President’s Build Back Better Agenda. Congress has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to act, and we cannot afford to wait.”
Bob Keefe, E2’s Executive Director, said: “Business leaders in every state who are reeling from fires, flooding, hurricanes and drought know that the economic costs of climate change are too big to go small with the packages before Congress right now.”
Jeffrey Hollender, co-founder and CEO of the American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC), said: “Companies are seriously concerned about climate change and its impact on American businesses, and those which signed on recognize the necessity and urgency of this bill. With it will come the investments needed to build back better, and it includes adequate and appropriate means to fund it as proposed. It’s absurd that any pro-business group which purports to represent the interests of American businesses would not be unequivocally supportive unless they were more concerned with their own short-term gains than the survival of our planet and future generations.”
Earlier this week, more than 110 beauty and wellness brands—leaders in a $500 billion / year industry—also added their names to letters calling for Congress to take immediate action to make the investments that the President has been calling for. Those companies launched a day of action urging their customers and social media followers to raise their voices to call for solutions to the climate crisis.
This diverse group of business leaders joins some of America’s largest and best-known businesses that have already come out in support of the reconciliation package, including Salesforce and Netflix, which have both endorsed reconciliation as the best opportunity to take meaningful action to address the climate crisis. Etsy urged Congress to include the Child Tax Cut, and paid family and medical leave in the Build Back Better Agenda. And Apple has reiterated its support for the Clean Electricity Performance Program, a key element of the President’s climate agenda, which a National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) analysis found could create 7.7 million jobs over the next decade.
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