COMMENTARY: The President the Planet Needs

Reactions to Obama’s Win from the Nation’s Green Groups

An Obama victory is seen as a decisive win for green issues by leading environmental groups.

Gene Karpinski, the president of the League of Conservation Voters, e-mailed out a one-line response to Obama"s win that said it all. "America embraced change today. And the planet will be better for it."

Here is what other green groups had to say.

Center for Biological Diversity (Kierãn Suckling, Executive Director and Peter Galvin, Conservation Director): "With the historic victory of Barack Obama tonight and the shift of the House and Senate toward a more progressive makeup, the nation is poised not only to reverse the terrible legacy of the Bush administration but to fundamentally re-envision environmental protection and respect for diversity of all kinds.

"Mass extinction, global warming, and erosion of diversity are the greatest threats humanity has ever faced. The time left to address them is growing short. In our 20 years advocating for wildlife, wilderness, and untamed culture, we’ve never before witnessed a presidential election with so much promise to actually solve these issues."

Greenpeace USA (John Passacantando, Executive Director): "Americans weren"t fooled by the millions of dollars the oil and coal companies spent during the election to derail a solution, or by last-minute scaremongering about the financial costs of cleaning up our economy. President-Elect Obama said that the change we need includes putting people back to work by solving global warming and investing in a clean energy future and Americans responded to that vision in historic numbers.

"For eight years, the international community tried to solve global warming while this country"s leadership sat on the sidelines. We look forward to showing a waiting world that America is back and ready to lead."

League of Conservation Voters president Gene Karpinski said the planet will be better served under Obama.© Chris Kleponis, Flickr

National Resources Defense Council (Frances Beinecke, President): "The election of Barack Obama represents a new day for environmentalists. His election brings an end to eight years of unrelenting assaults on the environment.

"Barack Obama"s election is a victory for everyone who wants new solutions that will repower, refuel, and rebuild America. Through a comprehensive approach, we can create clean energy, cut our dependence on oil and create millions of new jobs. From taking on global warming to advancing clean energy, President-elect Obama has sent a clear message that he will make progress on the environmental and energy challenges that our nation faces today."

National Audubon Society (John Flicker, President and CEO): "Voters in this historic election cast their ballots not only for change, but for a new era of hope for our environment, and the people, birds, and other wildlife that depend on it. Washington has been ignoring critical environmental issues for too long. President-elect Barack Obama and a more environmentally aware Congress offer the promise of leadership and fundamental change that could usher in new protections for America’s great natural heritage, and a new lease on life for species in decline."

The Audubon Society goes on to call for the immediate addressing of several crucial environmental issues, including presidential appointments, scientific integrity, global warming and renewable energy, endangered species conservation, bird and habitat conservation and ecosystem restoration.

And follow the ongoing state-by-state watch of how green candidates fared this election at