Starting point: Scientists concerned about misuse of science in ways that endanger the planet
Organizing Strategy: Gather consensus around key issues, and educate public
Tools: A journal, press conferences
Outcome: A generally respected voice
The Union of Concerned Scientists puts rigorous, independent science to work to solve our planet’s most pressing problems. Joining with citizens across the country, we combine technical analysis and effective advocacy to create innovative, practical solutions for a healthy, safe, and sustainable future.
UCS is an alliance of more than 400,000 citizens and scientists. UCS members are people from all walks of life: parents and businesspeople, biologists and physicists, teachers and students. Our members understand that scientific analysis—not political calculations or corporate hype—should guide our efforts to secure responsible changes in government policy, corporate practices, and consumer choices.
Our experts work on some of the world’s most complex and daunting problems: stemming the tide of global warming, finding sustainable ways to feed, power and transport ourselves, and reducing the threat of catastrophic war. Our achievements over the decades show that thoughtful action based on the best available science can help safeguard our future and the future of our planet.
UCS stands out among nonprofit organizations as the reliable source for independent scientific analysis. In an increasingly complex and technical world, rigorous and objective research and analysis is essential to devise innovative and effective solutions for cleaner air, energy and transportation, to ensure food is produced in a safe and sustainable manner, and to build a future free from the threats of global warming and nuclear war.
The experts on our staff are highly respected in both Washington, DC, and state capitals, and are frequently called to testify before government committees.
UCS analysis doesn’t gather dust. We collaborate with respected researchers across the world and By mobilizing scientists and combining their voices with those of advocates, educators, business people, and other concerned citizens, UCS has built a reputation for fairness and accuracy and amassed an impressive history of accomplishments.
Here are just a few of our recent victories:
- In 2014, UCS played a key role in winning international protections for rainforests that will keep at least 300 million tons of global warming emissions from the atmosphere each year. That’s equivalent to shutting down more than 60 dirty, coal-fired plants.
- In 2013, UCS played a key role in helping the Obama administration pass tough emissions and fuel economy standards for new cars and trucks that, by 2030, will keep more than 300 million tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere annually. That’s equivalent to taking 41 million of today’s cars and trucks off the road.
- In 2012, UCS won a major legislative victory in Congress with the unanimous passage of a bill that explicitly affords whistleblower protection to scientists and others who expose the distortion or suppression of federal scientific data. The landmark bill recognizes for the first time that censorship of federal information about public health and safety can be as harmful as other types of fraud and abuse in government.
- In 2011, UCS helped win a precedent-setting renewable energy victory in California, convincing the state to require at least one-third of its electricity to be produced from clean, renewable sources by 2020. UCS continues to push hard for new, strong renewable energy standards across the nation and to defend the more than 29 renewable standards we’ve helped enact.