William J. Clinton was elected to two terms as President of the United States. While leading the country through the longest economic expansion in its history, President Clinton demonstrated time and again that protecting the environment and growing our economy are compatible goals. During his Presidency, he strengthened the Clean Air Act and Safe Drinking Water Act, blocked attempts to roll back critical environmental laws like the Clean Water Act and Endangered Species Act, and accelerated toxic waste cleanups. He expanded national wildlife refuges and developed policies to protect our oceans, coastlines, and marine sanctuaries. He invested in clean energy research and technologies, and supported U.S. ratification of the Kyoto Protocol. He fought back attempts to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas drilling, and took bold steps to preserve some of our most treasured natural resources -- the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone and the Everglades. On January 11, 2000, when he signed into law the protection of over 1 million acres, President Clinton stated, “And if you look out here, you see, 10 or 20,000 years from now, if the good Lord lets us all survive as a human race, no one will remember who set aside this land on this day. But the children will still enjoy it.”
In 2006, President Clinton launched the Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI) to address the core issues driving climate change by working at the invitation of city and national governments and with businesses around the world. CCI creates programs to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that are both economically and environmentally sustainable. CCI’s programs work to increase accessibility and deployment of clean energy, reverse deforestation, and reduce carbon emissions in cities and communities. By partnering with the C40 Climate Leadership Group, CCI has created a network of cities around the world that are taking action on combating climate change. Across all of its programs, CCI uses a holistic approach to address the major sources of greenhouse gas emissions and the people, policies, and practices that impact them. To date, CCI has helped to cut or abate more than 2 million tons of greenhouse gases in some of the world’s largest cities annually.
The Walden Woods Project is proud to present its first Global Environmental Leadership Award to President Bill Clinton.