Starting Tonight: The Green Auction

Tonight in New York City, Christie’s International will be rolling out a glitzy green carpet (yes, green) to welcome celebrities, business leaders, adventurers and collectors, for the first-ever Green Auction to celebrate this 40th Anniversary of Earth Day.

Yesterday, I sat in on a press conference about this exciting, important event. To kick it off, producers played a new public service announcement featuring CI’s own Vice-Chair and spokesman, Harrison Ford, who asked for the public’s support in a “Bid To Save The Earth”.

“That is fantastic,” said Susan Rockefeller, co-chair of the Green Auction along with her husband David Rockefeller, Jr. “We need these nonprofits as the collective conscience for those that don’t have a voice – the air, the animals, the water, the children.”

Edward Dolman, the CEO of Christie’s International, explaned how the idea of a Green Auction was born, and why the famed auction house sees itself as a catalyst in the green movement. “Unprecedented times call for unprecedented measures. This collaboration is unprecedented, and we are reaching out to the entire public asking for their support and action.”

Included in the list of amazing lots, which will be auctioned off from tonight through May 6th, will be incredible experiences with celebrities like Hugh Jackman, Sigourney Weaver and President Bill Clinton, VIP tours to some of the wildest places left on Earth, and collectibles, including a model replica of the Millennium Falcon from “Star Wars,” signed and donated by Harrison Ford, whose character Hans Solo famously piloted the space ship in the blockbuster films.

The auction, which goes live tonight at 7:30pm EST and will be cybercast globally via Christies LIVE at www.abidtosavetheearth.com, will benefit the conservation efforts of four environmental organizations, including Conservation International.

Among the press conference’s all-star panel, which included actor Sam Waterston of NBC’s “Law & Order”, and actress Candice Bergen, sat CI Chairman and CEO Peter Seligmann who took the microphone and, referencing President Obama’s Wall Street visit this week to push financial reform, told the crowd, “Dealing with financial challenges is not just about the economy…We’ve got to deal with the environment if we’re going to have a sound economy.”

“It’s the investment of a lifetime,” added Kevin Parker of Deutsche Asset Management, whose firm is a lead sponsor of the event, “but the hard work is yet to come. Hopefully we can move the needle here.”

Let’s hope we do. If you want to pitch in, you might consider bidding on one of the incredible lots available for auction online until May 6th, which are expected to go for hundreds to tens of thousands of dollars each. Or – maybe think about sending a quick text message to “GoGreen” to 20222, which will automatically donate $10 to the proceeds from the Green Auction.

Stay tuned… I’ll have an update to report on this inaugural Green Auction tomorrow!

Kim McCabe is CI’s U.S. Media Manager.

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