Amping up climate commitments

Letter from the Executive Director

One of the clearest and most devastating climate change impacts has been the dramatic amplification of damage caused by hurricanes. As Hurricane Florence landed on the eastern seaboard and with relentless negative news, it was extremely uplifting to spend last week with leaders at the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco. I was honored to present on our successful MN is Still In event at the We Are Still In forum highlighting private sector leadership and new commitments, following a short documentary on Minnesota’s clean energy leadership produced by The Redford Center.

Commitments from the education sector, philanthropy, businesses, states, cities, and community-based organizations united efforts to amp up climate action at the Summit. Yes, the current U.S. administration is rolling back climate-related regulations aimed at protecting our air, water, public health, and the environment, but I can confidently affirm the amount of actions taken outweigh the negative. Here are just a few examples:

  • Led by the U.K. and Canada, five U.S. states — including Minnesota and several more countries — are committing to phasing out coal through the Powering Past Coal Alliance
  • A group of 17 U.S. states and territories will direct $1.4 billion to low-carbon transportation and adopt initiatives to sequester carbon on public lands, reduce super pollutants, deploy more solar energy on modernized energy grids, and develop shared product efficiency standards
  • Philanthropy announced $4 billion over the next 5 years in climate commitments, including Minnesota-based McKnight Foundation
  • And, climate change education legislation has seen traction in states like Washington and California, supporting environmental literacy among the next generation.

Ultimately, the Summit included actions pledged toward immediate decarbonization – striving to achieve global peaking of emissions by 2020! Read my full recap here.

We recently launched our new Green STEM Careers documentary, discussion guide, and monthly #TeachClimate Network for educators. At the local level, we’re making the link between art and climate through partnership with a local arts center and community events this October. High school youth are preparing for a kickoff meeting on Oct. 13  and a robust year of action plans, and we are preparing to send three business representatives to the COP24 international climate negotiations in December. Stay tuned for more! Thank you for supporting and joining our work.

Sincerely,

Nicole Rom, Executive Director

Education

Announcing our Green STEM Careers documentary

Minnesota is at a crossroads. We have grown our clean energy generation from 6% in 2005 to over 25% in 2018. It’s estimated that during the next 15 years, Minnesota will add at least 25,000 clean energy jobs that will generate more than $2 billion in additional wages. But, will these jobs help close our gaping equity disparities and projected workforce shortage? Green Careers for a Changing Climate is a ten-minute documentary that introduces students to Green STEM Careers as a solution to climate change and shows them the skills needed to work in Green STEM. The documentary was created for students, but could be used to show adults the vast opportunities in Green STEM.

Plug into our year-long educator resources

Did you know that we have another monthly newsletter devoted entirely to educators? Subscribe to the Climate Lessons Update for free climate change resources, education events, and affordable professional development opportunities. You can also tune into our monthly #TeachClimate Network and Bookclub virtual meetings, starting up again this month with The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind!

Youth

October 13 – Youth Climate Kickoff

When we work together, we can make a big impact on climate change. Join high schoolers from across Minnesota at our Youth Climate Kickoff! Start your school year with action. Come share ideas and learn tools for engaging your school in climate action, share projects you’ve done in your community already, and connect with other groups that develop climate justice solutions. Free event, food provided, at Central High School in St. Paul, MN. Virtual participation encouraged! Register now.

Bring youth climate action to your MN classroom!

Youth and mentors with our high school leadership program, Youth Environmental Activists of MN (YEA! MN) are excited to engage high school students across Minnesota in climate action. Student ambassadors of our program are visiting schools to meet youth and share opportunities for getting involved and bringing climate action to their schools. Contact jason@climategen.org to schedule a 5-minute presentation, a full class-hour workshop, or an after-school training on climate justice and youth solutions to climate change.

#ActOnClimate

What inspires you?

As an organization dedicated to addressing climate change, we see our role as providing the knowledge, skills, resources and self-efficacy to act; while sharing the personal stories of climate change impacts alongside positive, real progress happening from community-level climate change solutions to large scale decarbonization.

We’re preparing to launch a new e-newsletter, and we want to know:

  • What inspires you?
  • Why are you passionate about climate change action?
  • What would you like to hear more about?

Please take 2 minutes to complete our survey and be entered to win a #teachclimate T-shirt!

Take the Survey

Brewing a Better Climate – Drink for a Cause!

Climate Generation is participating in Lift Bridge Brewing Co.’s “Townie Tuesday” Series! This September 25, join us for a night in their Stillwater taproom for great beer, prizes from local companies, and climate change conversation. $1 of every pint and $2 of every growler purchased will go directly to support our programs! Our staff will be onsite from 5 to 8:30 p.m. to talk about our programming and facilitate prize drawings. RSVP to the Facebook event and invite your friends to join you for a brew or two. In partnership with Lift Bridge Brewing Co. and Thomson Reuters.

In The News

A climate voice: Katy Dorry

Katelyn, a 14-year-old student at Northern Lights Community School in Warba, MN, shares with MPR’s Climate Cast her experience organizing a Climate Convening for members of her community through our Youth Convening Minnesota project.

Weather Channel documents struggles of climate refugees in the U.S.

Shaza Hussein is a student at Rosemount High School and climate activist involved in our YEA! MN program. Hussein is involved in a variety of different initiatives and shared her priorites for action with MPR’s Climate Cast.

Photo of the Month

We released our 10-minute Green STEM Careers documentary for educators’ classrooms this month! Access the film & discussion guide for free.

 

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