Dear President Obama,
We, the Signers of this Petition, respectfully request that visible, functional and aesthetically-pleasing solar panels be installed and operational on the south lawn of the White House no later than April 22nd, 2014 so as to provide undeniable leadership to the world regarding the United States' commitment to sustainable energy sources and to serve as inspiration for a global response to the threat of climate change.
Over ten million (10,000,000) people visit The White House each year. Countless photos, videos, feature films, television shows, documentaries, webcasts and news stories are created with this historic building as backdrop. The positive ripple effect that such a clear message would send throughout the world is far more important to us than any partisan politics, bureaucratic red tape or logistical obstructions currently in the way.
We understand that there's already much on your busy agenda and only four short years until your second and final term ends. Our concern is that if we do not act upon the momentum your re-election has afforded, then the nation will once more find itself swept up in the media circus that always accompanies an election season and nothing on this issue will have been accomplished.
At this time a new President will be sworn in, one who may not share the goal of preservation of our planet. Then the window to lead the world in the defense of our children and future generations may be closed forever...
This outcome is unacceptable to us.
The time for bold, definitive leadership is NOW.
And it starts in your own backyard.
We are aware that the White House has a history with solar panels, and we would like to build upon that with a project of our own. Unlike other similar movements, our wish in particular is to see visible, functional and aesthetically-pleasing solar panels on the south lawn of the White House.
Why these stipulations?
A). Visibility. "Out of sight, out of mind" does not promote inspiration - we want to share innovation with the world, not hide it away. How can other nations be expected to follow our lead if they can't actually see it?
B). Functionality. Every bit of sustainable energy helps - even if it's just powering the sprinklers or the holiday lights in winter. Maybe one day such a complex working facility could be completed powered by sustainable energy sources, but for now we feel this is a great first step toward countering any cognitive dissonance in the hearts and minds of a world looking to the U.S. for leadership.
C). Aesthetics. We need beauty, not eyesores - the White House was designed through an architectural competition and the same could be done to ensure that the solar panels fit with the "flow" of the buildings and the grounds. We have faith that happy balance between beauty and practicality can be be reached.
No taxpayer money will be spent on this project as manufacturers, installers and maintenance crews will gladly donate their time, staff and materials free of charge just for the prestige of having their sustainable energy technology on such prominent display.
All personnel involved (especially those doing any surveying, construction or repairs) would gladly undergo thorough background checks and coordinate first with the White House grounds crew, security staff and other relevant agencies, entities, institutions and/or organizations.
We feel the world needs to see a visual commitment from you in the form of a ribbon-cutting ceremony on the south lawn solar panels no later than April 22nd, 2014.
Why this particular date?
A). April 22nd, 2014 will be National Earth Day. What better gift to the planet we have all sworn to preserve?
B). Much longer than April 22nd, 2014 and we risk falling into the next election cycle, which would eclipse this subject.
C). Assuming this petition reaches enough signatures, makes it before you and then gets approved in the next 90 days would still give us only 24 MONTHS to make our dream a reality.
Mr. President, the clock is ticking.
The threat of climate change isn't going away and we need to inspire the world to respond to it.
The path of sustainable energy needs leaders to forge the way.
We, the Signers of this Petition, have the "Audacity to Hope".
Hope that you will help us achieve our dream.
Hope that you will walk the walk as well as talk the talk.
Hope that you, your family, your friends and your co-workers will join us at a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new south lawn solar panels on April 22nd, 2014 and afterwards for a potluck in the park across the street (also known as "The Ellipse").
In closing, we'd like to take this opportunity to thank you for your civic duty and to quote your historic second-term inauguration speech (which can be found at the following link)...
"We will respond to the threat of climate change knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations. Some may still deny the overwhelming judgment of science, but none can avoid the devastating impact of raging fires, crippling drought and more powerful storms. The path towards sustainable energy sources will be long and and sometimes difficult. But America cannot resist this transition. We must lead it. We cannot cede to other nations the technology that will power new jobs and new industries. We must claim its promise. That's how we will maintain our economic vitality and our national treasure (our forests and waterways, our croplands and snow-capped peaks). That is how we will preserve our planet, commanded to our care by God."
The Signers of the Solar White House Petition