Bill McKibben joined meteorologist Jeff Masters and Climate Scientist Greg Jones this morning to discuss the connections between stronger storms and climate change. Do yourself a favor and listen all the way through–fascinating stuff.
A big crowd of volunteers joined 350.org in Times Square this afternoon to unfurl a giant parachute with the message “End Climate Silence” and an image of a hurricane.
“Meteorologists have called this ‘the biggest storm ever to hit the U.S. mainland,’ which is a reminder of how odd our weather has been in this hottest year in American history,” said 350.org founder Bill McKibben. “But mainly it’s a reminder of how much we need to take care of each other when disaster strikes–we hope everyone will pitch in with the Red Cross, and with local relief efforts. Community is our greatest source of energy, and our cleanest!”
Photo: Adam Welz
As Hurricane Sandy barrels down on the East Coast, scientists are connecting the dots between increasingly extreme weather and global warming. Yet for most of this year’s presidential election, the words “climate change” have gone unmentioned. The issue was not raised in a presidential debate for the first time since 1988.
Scientists warn that climate change is loading the dice for extreme weather events like Hurricane Sandy. The Earth’s average global temperature has risen between 1.5 and 2 degrees Fahrenheit over the past century and the warmer temperatures mean that the atmosphere holds about 4% more moisture than it did in 1970, leading to greater rainfall.
Photo: Adam Welz
According to leading hurricane tracker and weatherman Jeff Masters, water temperature in the mid-Atlantic this year is 5°F warmer than average, allowing hurricanes to travel farther north and contributing to “an unusually large amount of water vapor available to make heavy rain.”
The recent string of extreme weather events — especially the drought, heat wave, and wildfires that ravaged much of the United States this summer — is making Americans more concerned about climate change. According to a recent report by the Yale Project on Climate Change Communications, 70% of Americans now say they believe global warming is a reality, the highest level since 2008.
This November 7, 350.org is launching a 20-city nationwide tour called “Do The Math” to connect the dots between extreme weather, climate change, and the fossil fuel industry, which is not only driving climate change but blocking the clean energy solutions that could solve the crisis. More information is available at math.350.org.
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It’s not often you get to feel the world shift a little bit — but three years ago, that’s exactly what happened.
On October 24 2009, 350.org’s first ever day of action took the world by storm, with over 5,000 events in 181 countries. The International Day of Climate Action helped put the 350 movement on the map in every corner of the globe.
It’s hard to describe it in words, so take two minutes to watch this video — and consider chipping in to support our work moving forward:
CNN called the event “the most widespread day of political action in our planet’s history.” Foreign Policy magazine called it “the largest ever global coordinated rally of any kind.” For 24 hours, the global climate movement was the top story on Google News.
There’s a really amazing person that has been working with our Pacific team over the last six months. It’s time we let her introduce herself and share her story. We’re totally inspired and excited to be working with her – Koreti Tiumalu!
It’s time for me to introduce myself – I’m Koreti Tiumalu. I’ve been working with 350.org in New Zealand (outside of my full-time job) for the last six months now, as the Pacific Outreach Coordinator. In that time, we’ve started building a unique Pacific movement in New Zealand around climate change.
When I came on board my knowledge of climate change was next to none. In fact if you told me a year ago that I’d be the 350.org Pacific Outreach Coordinator, I would have laughed at you – it’s been that much of a journey for me. As well as my crash course on climate issues in the Pacific with Aaron, I did what any other person wanting a deeper understanding of world events would do – I went to Youtube. In one weekend I watched lectures, speeches and actions from all over the world and was blown away. It was truly my lightbulb moment.
My parents migrated to New Zealand from Samoa with my three eldest siblings, no money and no English back in 1962. I grew up in Newtown, Wellington, listening to their stories of life in the Islands – living off and working the land they loved. This instilled in me a passion for Pacific people and a desire to ‘give back’ for the sacrifices they made.
It is our families and friends who are directly impacted by the effects of climate change – extreme weather, rising sea-levels, erosion and water salination issues. That is where it hits home for me, and it hits home for all Pacific people. I know this to be true because I have seen it in the Pacific outreach work we have done so far this year. Although we have been raised here in New Zealand, our cultural links bind us to the Islands as still being “Home” and what’s happening is not okay. Pacific Youth have asked the same question at every event we’ve had – “What can I do? How can I help?”
Over the last six months, we’ve started to make this vision a reality and have run “Pasefika Climate Change Jams” in Auckland and Wellington. Now as we build up to Power Shift NZ-Pacific, our goal is to get 100 young Pacific Islanders living in New Zealand to actively participate in the event. We will harness that energy, to then reach across New Zealand’s Pacific communities in 2013 and beyond.
It’s time Pacific people found themselves a seat at the table where these things are discussed and tackled – and I am excited to be a part of an organisation who has recognised the valuable contribution that Pacific people can bring to that table. We will bring colour, new ideas, new life and above all else, heart.
I’m really excited, and I’m also daunted by the work ahead. Doing all of this on top of a full-time job is a real challenge, but I’m committed to making it work, as this is just too important for it not to happen.
You can contact me by email here. You can catch Koreti in the video shown in the article here – which was made for the World Social Good Summit in September.