Take Action


Get Involved

The Rachel Carson Council is a nationwide membership organization that engages and empowers our supporters to take effective action in communities and campuses at the local, state, and national level. With the leadership of our President and CEO, Dr. Robert K. Musil, the RCC is a respected voice for policy change in the nation’s capital.

In addition to our work on Capitol Hill, the RCC currently focuses its organizing at the grassroots level in North Carolina, Maryland, and Pennsyvania.


Recent Action Alerts

Stop MVP’s Southgate Pipeline Extension! 07-17-23

The Mountain Valley Pipeline Southgate Extension is a proposed 73-mile extension of the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) mainline from Pittsylvania County, Virginia into North Carolina’s Rockingham and Alamance Counties. This pipeline would not only cross through disproportionately disadvantaged communities, but it would also cut through precious waterways in North Carolina. The Southgate project developers have asked for a three-year extension of their original certificate, despite missing the necessary authorizations. We need you to tell the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to deny Southgate’s request to extend their certificate!


Tell President Biden to Declare a Climate Emergency! 06-20-23

This week, news broke that the North Atlantic Ocean is experiencing an “unprecedented” heat wave, endangering marine life. Last week, air quality up and down the East Coast turned toxic as a result of deadly Canadian wildfires.

The effects of climate change are already devastating communities and ecosystems around the world and right in our backyards. We know that urgent action is necessary to avert more climate impacts. And the promise of urgent action was why we elected President Biden, who campaigned on a historically progressive climate platform. Now, it’s time to call the climate crisis what it is: an EMERGENCY!

Let Them Be Heard! 06-08-23

Nearly a decade ago, 21 plaintiffs between 10 and 18 years old filed suit against the federal government on the basis that the government’s fossil fuel energy system and its actions that cause climate change violate the youngest generation’s constitutional rights to life, liberty, and property, as well as their rights to essential public resources like air and water.
For years, the plaintiffs have been unable to have their voices heard at trial. Please join us in saying:


During the Trump administration, the Department of Justice (DOJ) employed a legal tool known as a Petition for Writ of Mandamus that subverts the judicial process. It keeps these young Americans from having their evidence heard and considered by a judge in open court. But their wait may be over. On June 1, 2023, U.S. District Court Judge Ann Aiken ruled that the plaintiffs can amend their case, known as Juliana v. United States, and go to trial!

Stop the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP)! 06-02-23

The Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) is a $6.6 billion project designed to transport dangerous methane gas more than 300 miles from West Virginia to southern Virginia. Over the last year, fossil fuel industry mouthpiece Joe Manchin and other members of congress have been trying to tie the MVP to must pass legislation- and they’re close to winning. It’s time to tell the Biden administration to stop the MVP once and for all!

Our planet, our lives, and our future are threatened by fossil fuel production. That’s why we’re asking you to join the RCC and our coalition partners in front of the White House on June 8th at 2PM to voice our demand.

The EPA is setting limits on power plant carbon pollution – let’s get these regulations over the line! 06-01-23

The EPA is setting new limits on carbon pollution for fossil fuel power plants. By 2042, these new regulations could result in a net decrease of 617 million metric tons of carbon dioxide (the amount to power 75 billion homes for a year!). But the EPA needs support from the public to finalize it. The agency is holding a public comment period until June 6th, and we need all hands on deck!


Tell the EPA to crack down on Big Coal’s water pollution! 04-28-23

Big news: The EPA is stepping up and setting limits on the coal industry’s reckless contamination of our waters with new guidelines on steam power plant pollution limits. We could be on the precipice of witnessing a landmark rule on Big Coal’s endangerment of their power plants’ surroundings. But the EPA needs support from the public to codify it. The agency is holding a public comment period for the next thirty days, and we need all hands on deck!

The RCC has prepared a public comment for you to send directly to the EPA (you can add to or personalize it if you want) It voices your strong support for the rule in a matter of seconds.

Join the RCC, April 22. End the Era of Fossil Fuels! 04-13-23

This Earth Day, Saturday, April 22, the Rachel Carson Council is partnering with Earth Day Network and dozens of other environmental organizations to demand that the federal government and other decision-makers end the era of fossil fuels.

Join us at NOON for a youth-led rally and concert in Freedom Plaza (1455 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Metro Center Station), followed by a march to the White House and an organizing fair, where Rachel Carson Council will be talking about and tabling for our No New Off Shore Oil and Gas program. Come see us and join us in the fight for climate justice and cleaner communities!

Tell the OMB! No Delay for Clean Air Regulations! 04-06-23

On Tuesday, the RCC and our allies brought together environmental justice advocates, led by a brass band, to march directly to the doors of the EPA. We told the EPA stop delaying critical rules that would protect Americans from fossil fuel power plants’ harmful, often deadly emissions.

Pollution from this dirty industry is responsible for thousands of deaths a year, the majority in low-income communities and communities of color.

One of the most important tools that EPA has for fighting the climate crisis and protecting public health is section 111(b) from the Clean Air Act. It gives EPA the authority to toughen and tighten New Source Performance Standards for new fossil fuel power plants.

Tell the Biden Administration No New Oil or Gas Leases 03-31-23

On Wednesday, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management held one of the largest offshore oil lease sales in U.S. history. Lease sale 259 could result in over one billion barrels of oil over the next 50 years in the Gulf of Mexico, which will significantly increase greenhouse gas emissions and add to the climate crisis. This action, just two weeks after approving the Willow Project in the North Slope of Alaska, does not comport with the Biden administration’s stated climate goals.

Community Efforts

The Sampson County Public Hearing on Wood Pellets and the Industry that Divided It

On July 15, 2019 environmentalists and community members from across the state of North Carolina and visitors from Virginia and the United Kingdom showed up and gave public testimony against the proposed expansion of Enviva Sampson, an industrial wood pellet producer. Their words spoke truth to power, and the message was clear – North Carolinians want an end to the wood pellet industry in their state.

As detailed in our 2019 report, Clear Cut, Enviva has entrenched itself in North Carolina. It is a part of a system which harms the environment, perpetuates injustices against frontline groups, and divides communities under the guise of economic development.

Returning Home?

Eastern North Carolina and its beautiful coast has and always will be home to me. I work now for the Rachel Carson Council (RCC) in Washington, DC, but this past week, I was able to return home to continue critical work being done by the RCC and others to protect the unique environments and communities that also call the area home. Growing up in North Carolina, respect and awe for the natural world around me were instilled from an early age. I remember warm summer nights with the constant hum of cicadas when I would stay up to the wee hours of the morning to watch for sea turtle hatchlings boiling out of the sand and scramble to the safety of the ocean. I remember taking back country roads and driving for miles with nothing but lush forests on either side of the road

Environmental advocates discuss wood pellet industry’s impact on humans and the environment

Environmental advocacy groups gathered Friday to discuss the impact of the wood pellet industry on climate and public health during a boat ride on the Cape Fear River in Wilmington. People from groups including the Rachel Carson Council, Carolina Wetlands Association, NAACP, Alliance for Cape Fear Trees, Wood Pellet Forum, Cape Fear Sierra Club, and Clean Air Carolina attended. Dr. Kyle Horton, a Democratic candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives, was also in attendance. The boat travelled past wood pellet dome silos maintained by Enviva. The boat travelled past wood pellet dome silos maintained by Enviva, a company that bills itself as the world’s largest producer of wood pellets.

Don’t Burn Trees to Fight Climate Change—Let Them Grow

Of all the solutions to climate change, ones that involve trees make people the happiest. Earlier this year, when a Swiss study announced that planting 1.2 trillion trees might cancel out a decade’s worth of carbon emissions, people swooned (at least on Twitter). And last month, when Ethiopian officials announced that twenty-three million of their citizens had planted three hundred and fifty million trees in a single day, the swooning intensified. Someone tweeted, “This should be like the ice bucket challenge thing.” So it may surprise you to learn that, at the moment, the main way in which the world employs trees to fight climate change is by cutting them down and burning them. Across much of Europe, countries and utilities are meeting their carbon-reduction targets by importing wood pellets from the southeastern United States and burning them in place of coal: giant ships keep up a steady flow of wood across the Atlantic.

Northampton County, NC: More Enviva Expansion?

On August 20, The Rachel Carson Council (RCC) called yet again for environmentalists, activists and community members to provide testimony for the third proposed expansion of an Enviva plant in North Carolina in less than a year. The Northampton County Enviva plant is seeking to grow its operations to produce 780,000 tons of wood pellets per year. That equals approximately 18,000 acres of forestland destruction in North Carolina and Virginia. At a time when the climate crisis is getting worse, and with clear science showing the destructive nature of the wood pellet industry, such expansions are absolutely unacceptable.

The Enviva Southampton Plant & Enviva’s Fourth Expansion in a Year

In an unsurprising turn of events, Enviva has applied for its fourth expansion permit in under a year for its Southampton Plant located in Franklin, Virginia. This expansion would increase production by 246,000 tons per year equaling another 5,600 acres of forests cut down annually. This is unacceptable. We are on the precipice of climate disaster, and the only tried and true way to draw down carbon from the atmosphere is through the protection and expansion of biodiverse forests. Every week, more reports and investigations are demonstrating that forests are key to any climate solution and that the wood pellet industry is failing to properly source its materials, failing to protect communities’ health, and worsening our climate through its operations.