We are approaching the fourth hottest year on record with several all-time heat records set this summer. A new report in The New York Times shows just how widespread and intense the impact of climate change is right now and how unprepared we are for future impacts. In the U.S., May through July ranked as the hottest ever according to NOAA — almost 5% above average.
In California, the largest wildfires in state history are burning right now, not to mention the fires burning across several western states. As I head to California next month for the Global Climate Action Summit, this will be on my mind, but I’ll be focused on solutions at the We Are Still In Forum, a screening of the film Happening, and more. We know that with effort, technology, and human persistence, warming can be slowed enough to avoid the worst consequences of climate change. State and local government, businesses, communities, and individuals are taking action and showing how it’s done. There are signs of progress:
While here in Minnesota we missed the targets set 11 years ago for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, we can still meet our longer-term goal to reduce emissions by 80% from 2005 levels by 2050, according to a report from The McKnight Foundation. More than 59,000 Minnesotans now work in clean energy industries across every county, according to a new analysis of energy jobs data — our state’s clean energy jobs grew at a rate of 2.6%, twice as fast as overall job growth in the state. Minnesota’s growth is also a bright spot in the Midwest, which saw an overall 1.2% decline in clean energy jobs. Renewable energy was the fastest-growing clean energy sector in the state with 16.5% annual job growth, the highest in the Midwest.
We will be at the Minnesota State Fair Eco Experience building later this month helping fair-goers take climate action and then rallying for Climate, Jobs and Justice on September 8th. We are gearing up for an exciting fall with our #teachclimate365 social media campaign, Youth Climate Kick-off, brewing a better climate events including Lift Bridge Beer Co. in Stillwater, and more!
Nicole Rom, Executive Director
Back to School Buzz
It’s back to school time (can you believe it?) and we’re excited to launch our #TeachClimate365 campaign — our challenge for all educators to bring climate change into their classroom all year. Help us spread the word about the importance of teaching climate change and take a stance as a teacher by participating in our social media buzz by retweeting our graphic, tagging @climategenorg on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter and filling in the sentence: “I pledge to #teachclimate365 because…” or “I will #teachclimate365 by….”
#TeachClimate Network and BookClub
Do you know an educator who is looking for new ways to bring climate change into their classroom? Let them know about our #TeachClimate Network and Book Club. We meet online monthly to discuss our “best pick” climate change reads and any questions that educators bring. New this year, we’re featuring author visits, big climate change questions to ponder, and more resources to help educators bring this content to their students. See the reading list schedule and help us spread the word!
Oct. 13: Youth Climate Kickoff
Save the date for this year’s Youth Climate Kickoff on October 13, from 10:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. at Central High School in St. Paul. High school youth from across the state are invited to meet other youth, build leadership skills, and plan actions for the fall. Learn about the latest projects in the youth movement for climate justice, and be a part of the action! Free event, food provided – register here.
MPR features YEA! MN leader’s climate story
Shaza Hussein, a leader with our Youth Environmental Activists of MN (YEA! MN) and senior at Rosemount High School shares her personal climate story on MPR’s Climate Cast. She discusses her family in Northern Sudan and her work to advance climate policy and hold officials accountable. Listen to her story here (Shaza’s portion can be found 6:20-8:25).
Sept. 8: Rise for Climate, Jobs, Justice
Climate Generation will gather alongside communities across the world rising up for climate action on September 8. Individuals fighting for a healthy climate, good jobs, and just communities will come together to learn how climate change affects our health, families, and economies, and share actions you can take for just solutions. Come build community, build art with local artists, and hear from keynote speakers and a powerful panel of youth leading on climate action. Join our event in Minneapolis from 12-4 p.m. at East Phillips Park, or find a local event wherever you are across the globe!
Tune into the Global Climate Action Summit
Climate Generation is joining orgs, individuals, and international political leaders as they gather for the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco from Sept 12-14. From presenting at the We Are Still In Forum to accelerating education leaders’ confidence on climate change action, we’re excited to represent Minnesota and push our leaders to take the bold action we need to protect our future generations and implement effective solutions that reflect science and justice. Learn more about how we’re involved and follow along virtually during the Summit!
Shaza Hussein, leader in our Youth Environmental Activists of Minnesota program and climate activist, shares her personal climate story with MPR’s Climate Cast and how she is holding officials accountable to take action on climate change.
Educator Scott Boylen, who attended this year’s Summer Institute for Climate Change Education, brought back what he learned to his Iowa community and the Driftless Area Wetlands Centre.
Climate Generation’s climate storytelling collection was featured in Yale Climate Connection’s piece on the importance of personal climate change experiences improving understanding.
Nancy Beaulieu of the Leech Lake Reservation attend our Talk Climate Institute back in March, where MPR’s Climate Cast recorded her personal climate change story. Her voice is featured in this episode of Climate Cast.
Scott Glup was a featured storyteller at our New London-Spicer convening through the Youth Convening MN project. He shares his personal climate story with MinnPost in their Community Voices section.
Our Senior Programs Coordinator shares why the sustainable campus of St. John’s University was the site for our Summer Institute for Climate Change Education.