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NH Steelworkers Go Green for Clean Air

September 4, 2007

Concord, NH – The Sierra Club's drive for reductions in greenhouse gas emissions received a boost this weekend, when New Hampshire steelworkers union members signed on to the club's global warming petition drive to achieve a two-percent yearly reduction in CO2 emissions through 2050. For conservation groups, it means thousands of new voices calling for action; for the union, it's a chance to push for better, cleaner working conditions for workers around the world.

New Hampshire Sierra Club chair Jerry Curran says the collaboration is part of a national movement, dubbed the "Blue-Green Alliance," aimed at concerns the two groups share.

"We've come together because we share a lot of common goals, such as a healthy environment and good jobs. They kind-of run together."

Mike Roche, president of the Steelworkers' Union local in Manchester, says his members are looking out for workers all around the world.

"A lot of the jobs are being lost to overseas, to other countries where people work for less, but also under terrible working conditions."

In addition to reducing greenhouse gases, the petition calls for enforceable protections for workers in future trade agreements. Curran says it could also lead to a new 'green energy' industry with the potential for an influx of good, new jobs for New Hampshire.

John Robinson/Eric Mack, Public News Service - NH