Action Update #14

Dear Friend/Neighbor/Colleague/etc.,

The purpose of this email is to help busy people in the Greater Rochester Area find opportunities to join the fight against global warming.  These emails are distributed twice per month and include 3-4 actions you can take to help stop climate change.  Read on to learn how you can quickly and easily do your part to protect the planet.

Quick Climate Fact

Warm air holds more moisture than cold air, thus increasing the risk of extreme rainfall events.  In other words, global warming creates conditions for more frequent and severe storms.  The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reports the number of severe weather events that inflict at least $1 billion in damages (adjusted for inflation) has risen from an average of two per year in the 1980s to more than ten per year since 2010. 

Two-Minute Action

Governor Cuomo recently agreed to ban fracking in New York! This is a huge win for the climate movement!

After a six-year review process by the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), including a study from the New York State Department of Health, officials said the potential health and environmental impacts were too great and the economic benefits too low to allow fracking to proceed in the state at this time.  Call Cuomo to thank him and ask that he continue transitioning NYS away from fossil fuels and toward a renewable energy future.  That’s all you have to say!  His number is 518-474-8390.  If it’s after hours or you’re not in the mood for conversation, you can just leave a message, or comment online at http://www.governor.ny.gov/contact.  

Fun Climate Action!  

If you are a mother, grandmother, aunt, or other woman who is concerned about global warming, don’t miss the first Mothers Out Front Drinks event!  Mothers Out Front is an organization focused on building a movement of women who use their collective energy and voice to convince elected officials and business leaders to push for a swift and complete transition away from fossil fuels, to clean energy.  Founded in Massachusetts in 2012, Mothers Out Front officially moved into New York State in November 2014, starting here in Rochester.  On the third Friday of each month, Mothers Out Front members and newcomers will gather to eat, drink, and discuss local climate issues and corresponding opportunities for action.  No previous knowledge or experience necessary.  Feel free to bring your friends along.  

What: Mothers Out Front Drinks

When: Friday, January 16, from 5:15-6:15

Where: Trata at Culver Road Armory, second floor bar – 145 Culver Road, Rochester

For more information contact Sue Hughes-Smith at suehughessmith@gmail.com

If you can’t make it on Friday night, but would like to learn more about Mothers Out Front, contact Neely Kelley (neely.kelley@gmail.com) or Abigail McHugh-Grifa (abigailmchugh@hotmail.com).    

Two-to-Five-Minute Action

New York State’s Climate Smart Communities (CSC) program supports municipalities as they identify, plan and carry out projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, promote energy efficiency and renewable energy sources, and prepare for the challenges climate change will bring.  This program provides resources that enable localities to act on climate, without mandating which programs or policies they should adopt.  To take advantage of these resources, communities must first take the pledge to become a CSC.  Four communities in our area have done so: the City of Rochester, Town of Brighton, Town of Irondequoit, and Village of Victor.  If you do not live in one of these areas, please contact your local leaders to urge them to (literally) get with the program.

Below is contact information for elected officials from local municipalities that have not yet pledged to become Climate Smart Communities.  Call or email the one that represents you and say something like, “As your constituent, I strongly urge you and your fellow representatives to vote to take the Climate Smart Community pledge and, following this, to take advantage of the resources this program provides.  New York State has set goals to mitigate climate change and increase resiliency to its inevitable effects.  Let’s make sure we are part of the solution, and that we and our neighbors are prepared for the challenges that climate change will bring.  Thank you.”  If you or they need more information, it can be found on the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation website.

If you live in a municipality that has already taken the pledge (Rochester, Brighton, Irondequoit, or Victor), please call or email your elected officials to thank them and encourage them to follow through on their commitment by acting to reduce your community’s dependence of fossil fuels and prepare for the impacts of climate change.  Contact information for these representatives follows:

If your town is not included in either of the previous lists, visit the DEC’s website to check if your elected officials have taken the CSC pledge.  If you’re not sure who your local representatives are, google the name of your municipality (e.g., Town of _____, City of ______, Villiage of ______) to find contact information.  Then call or email to either ask that they take the pledge or thank them for already doing so, as described above.    

Spread the Word

  1. Forward this email to friends, neighbors, colleagues, etc.  Don’t be shy!  You never know who might be interested in saving the world.  If someone would prefer not to receive these emails from you in the future, they will let you know.  When forwarding this message to multiple people, enter their addresses using the blind carbon copy function (bcc) to protect everyone’s privacy.
  2. Visit RochesterClimateAction.org, click on “Action Updates,” and use the share buttons to post this newsletter on Facebook and other social media sites.
  3. Become a Rochester Climate Action “frontline contact.”  Frontline contacts receive bimonthly emails directly from us, rather than having to wait for someone else to forward them on.  Frontline contacts who distribute the email to their personal contacts are acting as true leaders in the fight against climate change.  If you’d like to be a frontline contact, simply send an email saying so to rochesterclimateaction@gmail.com.  
  4. Talk to people about global warming!  Tell them why you are concerned and politely suggest that they should be too.  Again, don’t be shy.  These are important conversations that we should all be having.  

Words of Wisdom from a Local Activist

“We are at a point in history where the remaining clean air and water, our common rights, have to be protected by whatever means possible.  Fracking is one of the major industries ruining our environment and is the issue that most motivates me to fight for clean water and air.  Nedra Harvey, my anti-fracking partner, along with extraordinary mentors, fellow activists, and R-CAUSE volunteers have inspired and sustained me over the past five years.” Anna Sears (co-founder of R-CAUSE, Rochesterians Concerned About Unsafe Shale-gas Extraction) 

This message was written by Abigail McHugh-Grifa on behalf of RochesterClimateAction.org.  Rochester Climate Action is run by a group of local mothers who are concerned about how climate change will affect their children’s futures.  These mothers are unpaid volunteers and are not affiliated with any “green” businesses.  For more information, including other action opportunities, visit RochesterClimateAction.org.  We welcome your feedback on our work.  Please send comments, questions, suggestions, etc. to rochesterclimateaction@gmail.com.

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