Why We Do It
When environmentalists don’t vote, politicians don’t listen
Nothing motivates a politician more than the prospect of winning or losing an election, so if we want true environmental and climate leadership, we must flood the electorate and make it impossible for politicians to run for office without leading on the environment.
We take a long-term, evidence-based approach to building the power of the environmental electorate.
Leveraging data analytics and predictive modeling, we identify millions of registered-to-vote environmentalists by name and street address. Then, we use public voter files to narrow our focus to only those environmentalists who typically don’t vote and are thus ignored by most political campaigns.
Using proven voter-turnout messaging built on the latest behavioral science, we then canvass, call, text, mail, and send digital ads to these target environmentalists before every election—local, state, and federal. Using randomized controlled trials, we always test the performance of our messages and optimize each communication for it’s target audience.
3. Habit reinforcement
Voting is a “sticky” habit: once someone votes for the first time, they’re much more likely to vote again in future elections. Therefore, we treat every election—local, state, and federal—as a high-leverage opportunity to turn non-voters into voters. You can’t change someone’s voting behavior if you only talk to them every 2 or 4 years, so we work year-round in every election, regularly checking public voter files and following up with our voters until they become consistent super voters.
4. Changing the electorate
Nothing motivates a politician more than the prospect of winning or losing an election. EVP’s ultimate goal is to flood the electorate with so many environmental voters that politicians will have no choice but to appeal to environmental voters and our priorities.
Total local, state, and federal elections in which EVP has mobilized voters since 2015.
Using every election as an opportunity to change voting behavior, we track our voters’ long-term voting habits to maximize the cumulative impact of our work.
With behavioral science-informed messaging, we text, call, canvass, mail, and send digital ads to millions of low-propensity environmental voters each year with just one goal: turning them into better voters. Since 2015, we have contacted 7.4 million non-voting and seldom-voting environmentalists and helped convert 730,000 of them into “super voters” who now consistently vote their values in every federal, state, and local election.
We work toward justice.
We recognize that voting access, environmental justice, and equity for individuals of all identities and backgrounds are all intertwined. Polluters rely on existing systems of oppression, so our mission can only be achieved if we work to empower the oppressed.
We invest in learning.
When there aren’t established best practices, we set new best practices. We conduct our own research and consult with experts to test new methods. We humbly learn from our failures, double-down on our successes, and freely share our learnings with aligned organizations.
EVP has given 72 presentations, panels, and trainings on our research to both academic and grassroots audiences.
We respect one another.
We value the time and resources of our staff, volunteers, and donors. We only ask for investments of time or money where we believe — based on evidence — that those investments will have a significant impact.
Every day is Election Day for the Environmental Voter Project team.