How green is your politico?

  • SCIENCE GUY: Bill Nye spreads the word about voting records

    Adam Ferrari photo
  A new television ad campaign in Washington state lets voters know which candidates up for re-election next fall have minded their green p's and q's. The $2 million project got under way in mid-January, and it features the nationally syndicated Bill Nye, the "Science Guy," who uses humor and science to teach the public how legislators have voted on environmental issues.

"Our feeling is that the public is far ahead of politicians on these environmental issues," says Ed Zuckerman of Washington Conservation Voters, the nonprofit group behind the campaign. "We're educating the public about how to get involved in the political process."

The TV campaign advertises a Web site,, that makes it easy to contact local politicians, or write a letter to the editor of a local paper.

The project was inspired by the group's polls that show Washington voters care enormously about conservation issues. Eighty-one percent of those polled, for example, said they wanted tougher laws for salmon recovery and protecting water quality, says Dick Mark of Conservation Strategies, a major donor to the campaign.

"But this voter support hasn't been respected in the legislature or the governor's office," he says. "We're letting politicians know they'd better start leading on green issues or they'll be in trouble in the ballot box next fall."

* Rebecca Clarren
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