Earth Action: Build Your Ballot

Earth Action: Build Your Ballot

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To honor Earth Day’s 52 years of environmental motion, Earth911 is presenting 52 Actions for the Earth. Each week by means of Earth Day 2023, we are going to share an motion you’ll be able to take to invest in the Earth and make your personal life extra sustainable. Individual motion is important to cease local weather change, however it’s not sufficient. Industry and governments should get on board. Fortunately, particular person Americans can affect the federal government by means of the elections course of. This week, in preparation for the midterms, you’ll be able to put money into the Earth by constructing your poll.

Action: Build Your Ballot

Voter Turnout

The 2020 presidential election had the best voter turnout up to now this century, with 66.8% of citizens 18 years and older voting. It nonetheless wasn’t excessive in comparison with different democratic nations. The United States ranks 30 out of the 35 OECD countries for voter turnout. We do even worse throughout midterm elections, when turnout drops by about a third.

There are many reasons folks don’t vote, from voter suppression legal guidelines that cut back eligibility or that make registering tough to the logistical challenges of in-person voting. And sadly, many Americans don’t consider that their vote could make a distinction. As many as 15% of registered voters didn’t vote within the 2016 presidential election for that purpose. But voting continues to be a strong instrument to drive change, and a single vote can make a difference.

Midterms Matter

The president of the United States holds arguably crucial elected place on the earth. But that doesn’t imply midterm elections are unimportant, particularly for environmentally minded voters. Anyone who makes coverage has a possibility to assist the surroundings. Midterm elections fill many federal roles, whereas native races decide issues like faculties, zoning, tree ordinances, and different points with instant environmental impacts.

Build Your Ballot

Hopefully, you’re already registered to vote, however for those who aren’t, it may not be too late.

This week, perform some research and planning forward of the election. Start by confirming that you are registered to vote. Find your polling place and make a plan for getting there on election day. Some states can have lengthy traces, so clear your calendar now. You would possibly be capable of signal as much as vote by mail as an alternative. The web site may help you determine the voting course of in your state.

Once you know the way to vote, you want to determine what your vote will likely be. Voting unprepared may lead to casting your poll in favor of candidates who don’t align together with your civic and environmental values. Use the Skimm’s online tool to see what will likely be in your poll. Before November 8, put aside a while to search for the candidates in your poll (even for “little” races like the college board). Google “inexperienced voter information” + your state or county to see if any environmental organizations have evaluated native candidates’ eco-credentials. Check out the League of Conservation Voters scorecard and endorsements for nationwide races. Taking time to construct your poll earlier than election day will be sure that you profit from your vote.

Feature picture courtesy of Edmond Dantès, Pexels