Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Youth Leaders Travel to DC for Power Shift

Bringing to Capitol Hill a message of longstanding history of injustice in Louisiana

As the anniversary of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil disaster approaches, nearly a hundred young people—ranging in ages from 13 to over 30, and hailing from Grand Isle to Grambling—are getting ready for a long trip ahead of them. They are going to Washington, DC April 15-18, to join ten thousand other young leaders at Power Shift 2011, a national convergence of young leaders working to restore our democracy and build a clean energy economy across the United States.

"Louisiana is dying a slow death from social and environmental injustices,” says Matt Wyatt, LSU student and steering committee member for the Youth Alliance of Louisiana Leaders. “Power Shift gives us the chance to build the next generation of environmental leaders to keep our coast, climate, and culture alive."

At Power Shift 2011, they will participate in a series of political and grassroots campaign organizing trainings, hear from top leaders like EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, interact with citizens on the front lines of oil, coal, and nuclear pollution, and meet with other youth leaders from around the country. The conference will culminate with a rally outside the White House and a full day of lobby visits on Monday, April 18th.

“Louisiana youth are awake,” says Devin Martin, a graduate of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and Power Shift coordinator for the Louisiana Chapter of the Sierra Club. “We know that our dependence on offshore drilling creates a dysfunctional democracy and is not an economic strategy for our future. From nuclear meltdowns to mountaintop removal coal mining to the ongoing disaster in the Gulf, we are constantly reminded of why young people are passionate to create a sustainable clean energy future and restore government to ‘We the People’.”

For more information, visit

Devin Martin, Sierra Club PowerShift Coordinator

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