Conservation efforts get a push

The “Power Vote” initiative has made its way to the Florida A&M University campus.

“Power Vote” is a non-partisan campaign created to engage millions of people in an effort to demand real solutions to global warming. The campaign highlights the use of natural energy sources like wind and solar power, energy efficient buildings and sustainable transportation.

Bessie Schwarz, National Wildlife Federation Power Vote Florida organizer, said FAMU students and faculty can relate to these issues and this campaign can help solve many issues.

“Our generation has the power to change our country,” Schwarz said. “By choosing a clean energy future we will create millions of jobs, improve our health, and avoid future wars. We are making the candidates respond to us by making our move on the energy crisis.”

“Power Vote” has a goal to receive one million pledges nationwide, including at least 2500 FAMU students. The campaign is encouraging all students to connect with other young voters at and vote in the Nov. 4 election.

The website states that “Power Vote,” “Reflects the priorities of students.” These priorities are green jobs, a clean energy economy, cutting global warming pollution and to re-engage as a leader in the international community.

The pledge states that students will “Pledge to vote for clean and just energy.” Over 180,000 students have already signed up nationally.

Universities like Florida State University, University of Florida and other universities around the country are competing to see who can secure the most pledges. The top pledging schools are posted on the website with a running tally. Kimberley Grant, 18, a freshman political science student from Jacksonville is excited about her first election. “I’m glad to be of any assistance with creating new jobs and a better environment. I’m ready for a change because we desperately need it.”

The campaign is run by the Energy Action Coalition; the EAC was founded in 2004 and aims to inform students on issues about the climate, greenhouse effect and the harmful side effects of coal usage.

In November of 2007 the EAC along with “Power Vote” started the Power Shift, a conference to give the youth a voice on political issues.

Daniel Johnson, 21, a junior math education student from Tampa believes in alternative energy.

“I’m tired of buying gas and I hear that my utility bill is about to increase,” Johnson said. “I just want to know how [the next administration] can construct [wind and solar power] to benefit the people.”

“Power Vote” is encouraging all students to stay involved after the election to help win the fight to turn clean energy promises into a reality.

Thousands are expected to turn out for the Power Shift ’09’ event in Washington, D.C. from Feb. 27 to March 2, during the first 100 days of the new administration.

For more information and updates visit on “Power Vote,” visit