Rodale Wellness – The Solutions Project: Pure Power

PHOTOGRAPH BY KELLY TAUB/BFA.COM

Think that 100 percent clean energy is impossible? According to activist actor Mark Ruffalo and his colleagues at The Solutions Project, it is possible and becoming more feasible every day. The Solutions Project is about finding real actionable and affordable ways to make clean energy happen for all Americans, one state at a time. Their main message is that moving to renewable energy from wind, water, and sunlight for all our electricity, heating and cooling, transportation and industrial needs makes sense from economic, environmental and health perspectives.

During the summer of 2015, they launched the “100%” campaign to take the message to people from all walks of life, by featuring events and activities with appearances by celebrity spokespersons, such as Ruffalo and Leonardo DiCaprio, and with support from high-profile businesspeople in the country. The initiative was inspired by Stanford University scientist and Solutions cofounder Mark Jacobson’s 50-state roadmap for transforming the United States from dependence on fossil fuels to 100 percent renewable energy by 2050, based on each state’s specific wind, water, solar, and geothermal resources. While this is an ambitious goal, the roadmap shows that it is possible.
Jacobson says, “Tennis is in my blood—I played competitively for 40 years, starting as a kid. Unfortunately, pollution in the air made its way into my lungs and affected my health, eyes, and skin, as it has for so many Californians, a state with the worst air quality in the United States. When I was 15 years old I connected the dots and realized that it was dirty fuels that had this effect on my body, on all our bodies; I dedicated my life to understanding and solving this problem. As a researcher, I wanted to find out whether a different choice was possible: healthy, clean energy for all people and purposes. After years of study, we have determined that going to 100% clean, renewable energy is absolutely possible with the technology we have today. When we go to 100%, nearly 50,000 American lives will be saved by erasing the negative health effects of fossil fuel air pollution. As athletes we know the power of the wind, water and sun—we also know the power of human energy. Now we truly have the choice to bring all of that together for a healthier, brighter future.”

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