On Wednesday December 13th, The Delaware River Basin Commission will discuss whether or not to open the Delaware River Basin up to fracking. Join us at the meeting and have your voice heard. 

Climate Mama extraordinaire, Rachel Dawn Davis shares with us why it is so important to HER and why it should be important to US that the Delaware River Basin NEVER is opened for fracking operations – of any kind. Below in her own words, is Rachel’s story.

Don’t Be Fracking Crazy

by Rachel, Dawn Davis

We each have a role to play in our communities, defending public lands from powerful interests. It has been happening for centuries and at this juncture, Donald Trump is doubling down on fossil fuels and threaten the health and wellbeing of every nation on earth. It is up to state and local leaders to chart a path forward for clean renewable energy, and right now the Governors of NY, NJ, PA and DE have a chance to do it in the Delaware River Basin by voting to ban fracking and fracking waste in this critical watershed.

The fight over fracking in the Delaware River basin is not a new fight, in fact 6 years ago, I was working with community groups across the region to ban fracking in the Delaware River Basin. I was pregnant with my first born a the time. Saying this makes me think about how Trump can say he is pro life while promoting fossil fuels that are poisoning communities and warming our planet, literally jeopardizing life as we know it. What is pro life about that?

I digress… .Here’s a true story about the time I told my Food & Water Watch Director I was pregnant and an urgent plea to join me and others on December 13 to prevent fracking and fracking waste dumping from invading the Delaware River Basin. Please sign up NOW to speak on Wednesday, December 13th! Continue reading

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Beginning December 4th at 6pm ET, former US Vice President Al Gore will host The Climate Reality Project’s seventh-annual 24 Hours of Reality broadcast—24 Hours of Reality: Be the Voice of Reality—a 24-hour live event, empowering millions watching worldwide to use their voices to speak up for solutions, science, and truth at this decisive point in history. It will be carried by broadcast partners globally, and streamed live online at 24HoursofReality.org and on our ClimateMama facebook page!

One of our favorite Climate Reality Leaders and Climate Papa extraordinare Jim Poyser will join  kids from Earth Charter Indiana   during the first hour of 24 Hours of Reality. Celebrities, musicians, elected officials, and thought leaders will join the broadcast to highlight the importance of climate activism around the world, including:

  • Special performances by:
    •  Multi-Grammy award-winning, international superstar Sheryl Crow previewing “Long Way Back,” from the Front and Center Music Series debuting February 8 on public television
    • Ryan Tedder and Brent Kutzle of OneRepublic performing their hit song “Truth to Power” as featured in An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power
    • Indian music sensation Shaan, premiering his video “Janiye,” an ode to the beautiful Kashmir, which is under threat from climate change
    • K-pop star Jay Park, premiering the English version of his song “Yacht”
    • Now United in their first televised performance.
  • Musical guests: Annie Lennox, Alli Simpson, Sandro Cavazza performing Avicii ft. Sandro Cavazza ‘Without You’, Belinda Carlisle, Billy Bragg, Christy Altomare, Ellie Goulding, G.E.M., The Hives, Iggy Pop, Jason Mraz, Jean-Michel Jarre, The Killers, Levi Hummon, Maná, Midnight Oil, Minzy, Nile Rodgers & CHIC, Phe Reds, Rag’n’Bone Man, Shawn Mendes, Shye Ben Tzur & The Rajasthan ExpressSpencer Ludwig, Tall Heights and Young Paris.
  • Celebrity appearances: Patrick Adams, Ed Begley Jr., Mariah CareySam Champion, Nikolaj Coster-WaldauTim Daly, Helen Hunt, Téa Leoni, Jonathan Scott,Shailene Woodley and Calum Worthy.
  • Elected officials and thought leaders: President of Chile Michelle Bachelet, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, California Governor Jerry Brown, Oregon Governor Kate Brown, Bonn Lord Mayor Ashok-Alexander Sridharan, San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz, Tshwane Executive Mayor Solly Tshepiso Msimanga, Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson, Warsaw Mayor Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz, Philippines Senator Loren Legarda, and World Economic Forum Founder and Executive Chairman Klaus Schwab.

This year’s 24 Hours of Reality will explore the extraordinary climate activism happening all across the planet, highlighting inspiring stories of politicians, businesses, communities, and everyday people standing up and illustrating how we can all make a difference, right now, right when our planet needs us most.

The program will begin on Monday, December 4 at 6:00 PM EST and will be broadcast live from New York City’s Roosevelt Island. The broadcast will travel around the globe highlighting stories of climate activism in six regions: North America, Oceania, Asia, the Middle East and Africa, Europe, and Central and South America. Al Gore will also share stories and statistics from the iconic slideshow presentation featured in the film An Inconvenient Truth and the recently-released An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power.

Our Climate Mama, Harriet is featured in Mr. Gore’s most recent book, An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power which was released with the film. Harriet was also recently honored by Mr. Gore with the Climate Reality Green Ring Award.

ABOUT THE CLIMATE REALITY PROJECT

Founded by Nobel Laureate and former US Vice President Al Gore, The Climate Reality Project is one of the world’s leading organizations dedicated to mobilizing action on climate change. With a global movement more than 5 million strong and a grassroots network of over 13,000 trained Climate Reality Leader activists, we are spreading the truth about the climate crisis and building popular support for clean energy solutions. For more information, visit www.climaterealityproject.org, “Like” at www.facebook.com/climatereality, or follow on Twitter at @ClimateReality.

 

 

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I walked in the footprints of elephants. Really.

I was privileged to have this amazing opportunity this past summer, in Botswana. This was my first and so far my only visit to Africa, and it was a life changing event. Seeing amazing beings –  elephants, lions, zebras, wild dogs, hippos –  in their natural habitat was truly magical; the stuff of my childhood dreams. I also realized just how threatened these amazing creatures are from climate change – including from habitat loss and extreme weather. We need to help people connect these dots, and make sure we do all we can to protect these animals and their homes.

Recently in the United States it was reported that the US Fish and Wildlife Service would allow  “elephant trophies” to be imported from Zambia and Zimbabwe. On so many fronts, this is and would be a travesty. This decision is on hold however,  because of an out pouring of pressure. Do add your name to this Avaaz petition, that has almost 2 MILLION signatures. Let’s make sure this “hold” stays permanent.

To me, this type of outpouring of outrage, this public pressure, is THE silver lining in what has been a difficult year to many of us – both as parents and as US citizens. As our democracy goes through many challenges and upheavals, and as a harsh light is shining on the realities of how broken the US federal government really is, I am THANKFUL this Thanksgiving for this resurgence in public action, outcry,  advocacy and resolve.

Whether it is through the #metoo campaign, protecting transgender rights in the military, immigrant rights and standing up to hate groups or through a significant increase in the number of voters at the ballot boxes, it is clear that people from across the United States are making their voices heard and their actions count.

Don’t shy away from those difficult discussions this year at the Thanksgiving table. Do listen to your “uncle Jim” who may have a very different perspective on events and issues then you do. Try starting conversations from a place of common ground and shared values. Perhaps your conversation will begin from a place of love for your children, your home, or with a shared and treasured family story. Make it personal, and do make your voice, your concerns and your hopes heard. Our children (of all ages) are watching us. They are looking to us for examples and to lead. We cannot and must not “normalize” situations and actions that clearly are NOT normal.

With thanks and love to all our Climate Mamas and Papas. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.

Yours,

 

Climate Mama


P.S Regarding wild animals in nature and elephants in particular. Please join us and share the National Wildlife Federation’s EVERY ELEPHANT COUNTS contest; share it with your children, their teachers, your family and friends. Learn why EVERY elephant counts. Enter the contest  today, YOU could win a trip to Botswana and have your own magical journey too…

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Like a lego set with pieces missing, annual United Nations climate conferences and meetings too often seem like projects that will never be completed with their purposes and goals beyond our imaginations. In fact, COP23 (The 23rd Conference of the Parties) may not even be in your lexicon, never mind on your radar. If you live in the United States –  United Nations negotiations on climate change seem to be sliding ever further away from the limelight, even as the need to have climate solutions front and center has never been more important.

For our Climate Mamas and Papas who ARE wondering what is happening in Bonn, Germany, where countries from around the world (including the USA) are attending the 23rd Conference of the Parties from November 6-17th,  this post is a quick summary of what is on the table, as well as a reminder of where we need to go.

United Nations

Each COP has a rotating presidency and COP23 is chaired by the Prime Minister of Fiji, a small island developing state on the front lines of climate change. As background and according to COP23 President’s website: “COP23 is the informal name for the 23rd Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The UNFCCC was adopted in 1992 at the Rio Earth Summit, which marked the beginning of the international community’s first concerted effort to confront the problem of climate change. Known also as the Rio Convention, the UNFCCC established a framework for action to stabilise concentrations of greenhouse gases in the earth’s atmosphere. The UNFCCC entered into force in 1994, and nearly all of the world’s nations—a total of 195—have now signed on. Each year the parties to the agreement convene to assess progress in implementing the convention and, more broadly, dealing with climate change. The first Conference of the Parties was held in Berlin in 1995. In 1997, the participants established the Kyoto Protocol, which included legally binding obligations for developed countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.”

Making a long story short, all agreements made under the Kyoto Protocol end in 2020. With the adoption of the Paris Climate Accords in 2015, a new set of agreements were put in place, taking over and superseding those made in Kyoto. Continue reading

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We are thrilled to share with you the Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) launch of Women Speak: Stories, Case Studies And Solutions From The Frontlines Of Climate Change. This WECAN project is a web-based research database and initiative is collecting and sharing stories by and about women from around the world; women who are leading struggles and solutions for climate justice under a variety of cross-sectional themes.

The goal of this innovative Women Speak is to create an accessible and ever-growing source of information, research and multimedia storytelling for frontline Earth defenders, policymakers, journalists, activists, educators, students, and all those seeking to understand and demonstrate why and how women are paramount to just action on climate change, and the defense and protection of the web of life itself.

 WECAN, helps us understand that “worldwide, when women are empowered, there are immense benefits to entire communities and societies overall.  Sustainable and local economies grow , populations stabilize, and children’s health and education improve – all of which are foundations for a sustainable path forward. In many countries, women get out the vote and vote more often, and lead on environmental and social legislation when elected to public office. It has additionally been shown that women are one of the most vital actors in peace-making.”

ClimateMama is honored to be an Allied Organization, helping launch, share and promote this unique and special project. Be part of the solution. Share your story, your videos, your photos your reports. Learn more here.

Yours,

Climate Mama

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Happy Halloween! We, in North America have taken the celebration of ghosts, goblins and monsters to an extreme, and on October 31st we will be ringing in this festive and spooky holiday in a myriad of ways. It is an opportunity for fun and fantasy and an opportunity to “be in the moment” and enjoy!

I wanted to share some highlights from some of our past ClimateMama posts, some of our “scary” ghosts and goblin stories, as quite frankly these are stories that aren’t going to go away. Our kids health, future and now is in our hands and Halloween is as good a time as any to  remind us all that we must make climate solutions a part of our lives moving forward. Continue reading

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This weekend is the 5th Anniversary of Superstorm Sandy. In many ways Sandy seems like a lifetime ago  – yet “Harvey, Maria and Irma” three devastating hurricanes which struck the US and the Caribbean this fall – bring back stark reminders from that weekend, 5 years ago. Below is a post I wrote, a few days after Superstorm Sandy, and on the eve of the 2012 elections. We have so much work to do to build up our resiliency and prepare for this new “normal” of superstorms. Those of us raising our children on the coasts, are on the front lines. We must make sure our elected officials not only acknowledge the crisis we are in, but help us build, plan and prepare for our future, which is now.

We thought the politicization of climate change was bad in 2012, sadly, things are have only gotten much worse. Climate change is happening whether you are republican, democrat, independent, rich or poor, blue, purple, black or white. We MUST take action. Hiding our heads in the sand, denying reality won’t stop the changes that are already taking place. In this upcoming election of 2017, please do vote; and for our children, challenge those seeking your vote. Ask them: “What are YOU doing about climate change?” If they don’t have a ready answer and a plan, please DO NOT give them your vote.

For our Climate Mamas and Papas in the northeast, do join us if you can, on Saturday in Brooklyn and Manhattan, and on Sunday, in Asbury Park. Look for our signs…

Yours,

Climate Mama

Climate Change: Making Your Vote Count For Our Kids – Post Sandy

Superstorm Sandy, “my neighborhood”

November 2, 2012: As I drink my morning coffee, through my kitchen window I still see homes with no lights, but the noise from generators that punctuated the usual early morning quiet these past few days, is absent. Neighbors are putting their recycling containers on the curb –Tuesday’s pick up has been rescheduled for today. Some normalcy returns. About 1/3 of our town now seems to have power, although on some streets it continues to look like bombs went off and clean up has yet to begin. The shock of Sandy is being replaced by resignation and acceptance, as people who’s homes have had extensive damage are looking for more permanent short to medium term solutions for places to live, and those without power are accepting the fact that it still could be days, or even weeks till they get it back. Continue reading

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In 2007, I had the honor and the privilege of training with Al Gore to become a Climate Reality leader. These 3 days changed the direction and future course of my life. My 2007 training was one of the first 6 trainings of the newly formed Climate Project (now Climate Reality Project). These first trainings were conducted by former Vice President Al Gore – as have been all subsequent trainings – and they were held in Nashville, Tennessee. 1000 people were trained over this first year. In October 2017, I was a mentor in Pittsburgh, PA where we trained 1400 climate leaders over 3 days. As my dear friend Jill likes to say, “we need everyone, everywhere doing everything all the time as quickly as possible.” While certainly larger in scale then the 2006/7 trainings, at this most recent training the same hopes were strengthened and reaffirmed,  new friendships and life long bonds were forged, and a fierce determination to succeed was enshrined in all.

It’s not easy logistically to train so many people at one time. The staff, the experts, and the mentors each contribute to creating a unique event, filled with long days of learning, networking, and discovery. Your head and your heart are made to hurt; nothing is held back about the gravity of the situation we face and the urgency of the crisis before us. Yet, no one wants to leave when the three days are up. To be in a room surrounded by so many people who are like you in so many ways is truly a life-affirming event. On the surface it seems everyone is so different, coming from diverse backgrounds and different locations around the country and around the world. Yet, we all share the hope and the belief that we can and will re-build our home; that a livable, healthy, and safe world can and will be a reality for us all and for our children, and their children. We all know it won’t be easy and that time is not on our side.

Photo Credit: jill Macintyre Witt

At our Pittsburgh training I was awarded the Green Ring, which is given “to an outstanding Climate Reality Leader who has demonstrated an exceptional commitment to their role as a climate communicator and activist. “

Wow!! I am so incredibly proud and honored to be the recipient of this very, very special award.  Yet I know without a doubt that it could have been given to any one of the other 1400 people in the room, or the 12,000 Climate Reality Project leaders, not in Pittsburgh with us,  who help to make up our Climate Reality family. I am fortunate to work with so many inspiring people.  We aren’t giving up, we have our eyes wide open and yet we still believe we can and we will win against this existential threat we face from our changing climate and ourselves. Together we are unstoppable!

With love and gratitude to all our Climate Mamas and Papas.  A special thanks to my Climate Reality family –  for strengthened my commitment and fortifying my resolve – we will succeed because we must. I will continue to live each  day by our Climate Mama Motto: “Tell the Truth, Actions Speak Louder Than Words, Don’t be Afraid.” 

Stay tuned and consider joining us for our next training. The date and location haven’t been announced yet, but if you sign up now, you will be one of the first to learn about it when it is announced.

Also, put December 4 and 5th on your calendar and save the date! Tune in to 24 Hours of Reality, which this year will highlight activism: inspiring us all to grow, fortify and build up our climate hope –  to find and create solutions to the crisis we face.

Yours,

 

Climate Mama

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For many of us at ClimateMama, smiling seems harder and harder to do these days. Hurricanes, earthquakes, shootings, humanitarian crises, food and water shortages, human rights trampled, and the list goes on. In fact the list seems so long these days, that our natural reaction has been to “shut down” completely, tuning off and tuning out. We realize too, that while some of us may have this luxury, too many of us don’t. The boogey man is knocking at the door and our hiding places are few and far between. But, regardless of where we live, how we live, or who we are, the act of smiling is human, and it is humane. Smiling is a critical human connection that we must not forget how to do.

These days, often what truly makes me smile, what makes me stop and be in the moment –   just for a moment –  is my dog, Ivy. When I watch her, as she intently watches the busy squirrels and chipmunks that are racing to get ready for the winter season, everything else seems to fade away. I can hear the birds, I can see the leaves, I can smell mother earth.  I live in the northeastern USA, where it is “technically” fall. Yet the daily temperatures, which are regularly in the ’80’s make it feel much more like summer. This too causes me stress, and increases my anxieties about our changing climate. Mother Nature, while angry, also reminds us of the annual cycles, and the leaves in our neighborhood are beginning to change color.  The animals, birds and insects, while confused, are also busily preparing for winter.

According to the World Smile Day website (yes there is such a thing!) “Harvey Ball, a commercial artist from Worcester, Massachusetts created the smiley face in 1963. As the years passed Harvey Ball became concerned about the over-commercialization of his symbol, and how its original meaning and intent had become lost in the constant repetition of the marketplace.  Out of that concern came his idea for World Smile Day. He thought that we, all of us, should devote one day each year to smiles and kind acts throughout the world.  The smiley face knows no politics, no geography and no religion.  Harvey’s idea was that for at least one day each year, neither should we.  In 1999, he declared that the first Friday in October each year would be World Smile Day.”

So, while we try to remain sane in what continues to be a very insane world,  take time out to remember to smile, to be extra kind to someone, and to be kind to yourself.

What makes you smile? What brings down your anxiety, who or what calms your nerves and gives you hope and comfort? We need to remind ourselves of these special “totems” and channel them, as the insanities and injustices of the day continue to be an onslaught that just keep coming. It remains up to us, to remind ourselves, our families, our children and even completes strangers that compassion and hope do reside in each of us. Smile at a stranger today, hug your children extra tight, give your dog a belly rub, and keep your climate hope alive.

Happy World Smile Day,

 

Climate Mama

 

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On September 25, 2015, 197 countries adopted a set of 17 goals to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all as part of a new sustainable development agenda. Each goal has specific targets to be achieved over the next 15 years. For the goals to be reached, everyone needs to do their part: governments, the private sector, civil society and Climate Mamas and Papas the world over.

On this, the second Anniversary of the adoption of the Global Goals, let’s choose to focus on the positive, what we can and must do.

Let’s remember our priorities and that solutions to our world’s great problems, are in our grasp, if we work together.. let’s NOT focus on divisiveness..rather togetherness. United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Amina J. Mohammed has a powerful message on how and why we must to take action if we want the Sustainable Development Goals to be a reality by 2030. Share it with the kids in your life.

We are in? What’s your priority goal? Ours in #13, Climate Action, which is intrinsically connected to all the others. Join us as part of the solution. Let’s  start by telling everyone we know about the Global Goals. Here is  a list of actions that each of us can easily take in our everyday lives to contribute to a sustainable future. We know many of these things you are already doing, so we can and must do more too. We all must do what we can. Our children are watching.

Yours in action and hope,

 

Climate Mama

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