In 2006, Bingham again rallied the support of faith communities to help pass the Global Warming Solutions Act, aimed at reducing California's emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. Word of Bingham's efforts reached the top, and she found herself standing next to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger when he signed the act into law.
Bingham has won an armload of environmental prizes, including the Audubon Society's 2012 Rachel Carson Award. She has also brought a singular perspective to the environmental movement.
"We have many scientists, business leaders and experts on our board, but Sally infuses each discussion with the moral dimension of the question at hand," the Environmental Defense Fund's president, Fred Krupp, said in an email. "She reminds us of the real human lives involved in our decisions. ... More than a few times, a vigorous debate has pivoted on Sally's words, as she reminds us of what's really at stake."
Getting the word out on Light Street
The United States is one of the most religious among the world's developed nations, and Bingham says she won't be satisfied until all 350,000 or so American congregations consider "stewardship of the environment as a matter of faith."
Earlier this month, Light Street Presbyterian Church in Baltimore participated in IPL's "National Preach In on Global Warming". It joined the linkage of churches across the nation to devote an entire service to environmental issues.
Speaking to the diverse group of elderly couples, twentysomethings and young families gathered in the pews, the Rev. Roger Scott Powers delivered a sermon that could have come from Bingham's own mouth.
He gravely reminded his flock of recent extreme weather events, saying, "We no longer have to wait 100 years to see the catastrophic effects of climate change."
"Climate change is a moral issue," the pastor concluded, "and the religious community needs to lead the way."
Reprinted from Climatewire with permission from Environment & Energy Publishing, LLC. www.eenews.net, 202-628-6500