Fighting for solutions

Letter from the Executive Director

The world recently passed another climate milestone. The Mauna Loa Observatory recorded its first-ever carbon dioxide reading in excess of 410 parts per million; Earth’s carbon dioxide hasn’t reached that level in millions of years.

Carbon dioxide concentrations have skyrocketed over the past two years due in part to natural factors like El Niño, causing more of the greenhouse gas to end up in the atmosphere. But let’s not mistake this increase is mostly driven by the record amounts of carbon dioxide humans are creating by burning fossil fuels.

It remains critically important that we continue to focus on the impacts and solutions to climate change. June marks the one-year anniversary of the administration choosing to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement; but in response, cities, states, universities, and businesses have stepped up to say that they are “still in” and committed to meeting the U.S. carbon reduction goals.

At MN Is Still In on June 13th, we will recognize, aggregate, and galvanize climate commitments from the private sector, following a benefit luncheon with special guest, James Redford, who recently produced a new film, Happening: A Clean Energy Revolution. The film and James’ message is uplifting, reminding us that clean energy is cheaper, better, and inevitable. Registration is open for the full day of action packed events— you don’t want to miss it!

Meanwhile, our youth have been taking action at the local level in their communities and at the State Capitol. Their leadership is inspiring, and even more importantly their voices are having a tangible impact, from state policy to community-level engagement.

Finally, we celebrated our recent accomplishments with our community of supporters at our annual donor appreciation breakfast. Our founder Will Steger shared a message from his expedition, reminding us of the fragility of the places we love and why it’s so important that we continue to work to protect what we care about.

Sincerely,

Nicole Rom, Executive Director

Education

Climate Commitments: School Board Resolution Toolkit

Climate Generation is leading a campaign to make climate change education a priority in our schools. Literacy on climate change is under attack nationwide, but youth are on the frontlines, fighting for their future and demanding action on climate change. We want you to join in and get involved!

Use our new Climate Commitments: School Board Resolution Toolkit to bring a resolution to your school board that commits your school district to teaching climate change in the classroom. Full of background information and a step-by-step process to finalizing your resolution and gathering support, this toolkit takes from from beginning stages to celebrating your success.

Educators: Fight Climate Change Misinformation this Summer

Save your spot for this year’s Summer Institute for Climate Change Education, June 26-28! Register today.

Participants will have the opportunity to attend field trips at Saint John’s Abbey Arboretum and Energy Farm and learn about place-based climate change education. Topics covered during the include the natural history of the area, Minnesota’s biomes, how to plan for a changing future, and using a solar array as a teaching tool. Take home resources to incorporate climate science and activities into your classroom!

Thanks to the Teach Climate Teachers Scholarship Movement supporters for funding 50 educators this year!

Youth

Students lead the way for local climate solutions

Five youth-led community convenings brought local climate science and solutions to towns across Minnesota this spring through our Youth Convening Minnesota project. Students worked with mentors from Climate Generation in partnership with Youth Eco Solutions (YES!) to create the community conversations with local elected leadership, parents, and youth. From climate change stories to interactive solutions, the convenings highlighted the facts and figures while featuring inspiring opportunities for collective action and hope. In the coming weeks, students will evaluate the experience and plan next steps on how to bring community commitments to life.

Youth Rise Up for a Fossil Free Minnesota

Over 100 youth from 32 schools across the state gathered at the State Capitol in April for the Youth Climate Justice Summit. Students spoke with their legislators to share why climate justice is important to them and asked for commitments to turn the vision of a fossil-free Minnesota by 2040 into policy solutions. Youth also secured commitments from Governor Dayton to veto several major bills and confirmed his support for climate justice bills.

#ActOnClimate

Join James Redford and Will Steger on June 13th for Climate Action

This June marks the one-year anniversary of the U.S. committing to pull out of the Paris Agreement. Minnesota is poised to help the U.S. meet 80% of its carbon reduction goals alongside 24 other states. Our MN is Still In event on June 13th featuring Will Steger and James Redford will highlight local action and inspiring solutions to climate change.

The full day of events include a benefit luncheon from 12-1:30 p.m., the Leadership on Climate Action Business Workshop from 2-5 p.m. plus a networking reception, and a screening of James Redford’s new film, Happening: A Clean Energy Revolution, from 7-8:45 p.m. at St. Anthony Main in Minneapolis. Register today for any or all three of these events.

Make a Call for MN’s Clean Energy Vision

Xcel Energy has spent the 2018 legislative session pushing a bill that would protect the utility’s investors at the expense of customers like you. Xcel’s bill has narrowly cleared every hurdle that’s been put in its way despite a veto threat from Governor Dayton and strong opposition from consumer groups, the Chamber of Commerce, our youth, and environmental and clean energy organizations. There’s one step left, and we need your help.

The bill is currently before the members of the House and Senate conferee committees – members you elected to represent you and the values you believe in. These members need to hear from you. Xcel’s bill should not be passed into law.

Xcel’s bill:

  • Shifts risk to consumers to pay for costly upgrades to Xcel’s aging nuclear plants;
  • Does nothing to achieve the clean energy vision Xcel promised to customers, or to Minnesotans;
  • Does nothing to solve the problem of nuclear waste.

Please call on your House and Senate representatives to reject Xcel’s bill. Find out their contact information here and take action!

In The News

Rochester students call for local climate change solutions

Three high school students in Rochester led a community-wide discussion at Century High School, through our Youth Convening Minnesota project, aiming to empower local residents to engage in local climate change solutions.


Students seek climate change solutions

Rochester high school students involved in our Youth Convening Minnesota project hosted a climate change convening at Century High School to discuss ways to fight climate change. They invited presenters, public officials, and leaders to speak on the issue.


The case for climate reparations

Chris Heeter, attendee of our Talk Climate Institute this March, tells MPR’s Climate Cast about her work at The Wild Institute and her eyewitness to climate change as a wilderness guide.


A slowing ocean current could mean big climate changes

Climate Cast digital producer Cody Nelson brings MPR listeners to the State Capitol for our Youth Climate Justice Summit where MN youth voiced their passion for cilmate action.


Dayton: No ‘viable way’ to build new Line 3 pipeline on current route

Gov. Mark Dayton said he doesn’t see “any viable way” for Enbridge Energy to build its replacement Line 3 oil pipeline along its current route, as a judge recommended earlier this week. The governor made his remarks at the Capitol during the question-and-answer session of the Youth Climate Justice Summit.


Governor Dayton Urges Minnesota Legislature to Support and Pass “50 By 30” Renewable Energy Standard This Year

Governor Dayton reaffirmed his support during a meeting with Climate Generation student activists. Governor Dayton’s Administration originally proposed the 50 percent by 2030 Renewable Energy Standard during the 2017 Legislative Session.


Youth Climate Summit Brings MN Students, Lawmakers Together

Students from across Minnesota get a chance to bring their concerns about climate change and the environment directly to their state lawmakers at the Youth Climate Justice Summit. Jason Rodney, YEA! MN Coordinator for Climate Generation, shares the students agenda to network, learn, and put those new lessons into action.


Climate change: The importance of making it personal

Megan Van Loh and Jothsna Harris of Climate Generation share with MinnPost why personal stories are key to conversations about climate change and the steps to engage someone in discussing the issue.


New London-Spicer YCM Youth Convening

Stella, Allie, and Emily from New London-Spicer’s YES! team, in collaboration with our Youth Convening Minnesota project, talk on Lakeland Broadcasting’s Q102 station about their community-wide convening.


Column: Celebrating 50 years of Wild and Scenic River protections

This year’s St. Croix Summit, held on Tuesday, April 24 at UW River Falls, aimed to inspire future river stewards with a special afternoon workshop for high school and college students led by Climate Generation: A Will Steger Legacy.


Southwest students advocate for climate action at Capitol

Members of a Southwest High School student group advocated for clean energy policies and practices at the state Capitol this spring at the annual Youth Climate Justice Summit.

Photo of the Month

Climate Generation staff and youth leaders from our Youth Convening Minnesota – Moorhead team celebrate a successful community climate convening!
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