The Other Carbon Dioxide Problem

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This opinion piece was published on the Sierra Club’s national website on April 16, 2019 and can be found here.

I have some bad news for you—the ocean is dying. And it gets worse, because when the ocean goes it’s taking us with it.

One of the ocean’s finest qualities is its seductive sense of mystery—there’s still so much that we don’t know about it. But a dangerous byproduct of this is that the ocean isn’t close to the top of most people’s concerns when they consider climate change. It’s “out of sight, out of mind” when we can least afford it.

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Take Me to the River

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Silva-Blayney speaking at a Colorado Springs protest against coal ash contamination. All photos courtesy of Fran Silva-Blayney.

This article was published on the Sierra Club’s national website on April 4, 2019 and can be found here.

Fran Silva-Blayney’s awareness of the world around her results from a life-long accumulation of keen observations. Now that her passion for addressing environmental issues is manifested in her work as a Sierra Club activist, many of those observations have come full circle. “I feel a sense of urgency with regard to finding climate solutions,” she says. “As a society we have to make some serious, hard choices about what we value.”

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A Scientist Circles Back to the Farm

Dr. Arianne Cease and friend                           ©2018 Arizona State University, used with permission

Last month’s Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco offered a rich cornucopia of affiliate events across the Bay Area that were open to the public. I was fortunate to experience eight events over the course of the week, each one enlightening and hope-inducing.

One thought provoking discussion I attended was Women in Climate Action Leadership at Christ Episcopal Church in Sausalito, CA, co-sponsored by the church, The Asia Foundation, and the Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability at Arizona State University.

There are ample reasons why women are uniquely qualified to lead when it comes to climate change adaptation. Panelists here spoke of the critical role women in developing nations play in the sourcing of food, fuel and clean water for their families, making them ideal leaders in the effort to conserve resources and practice adaptation. Also true is that cultural and societal norms often work against women’s ability to ‘own’ leadership; for example basic education for girls is poor or nonexistent in many such populations.

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