By Ashley Osteras, Sierra Club Climate Outreach Intern
On November 1st, a little over a year after the one year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy, President Obama issued a new executive order to help communities better prepare for weather related disasters due to climate change. Michael Brune, Sierra Club executive Director, praised Obama’s decision and stated the President’s “action today underscores the dire need for moving quickly to climate solutions like wind, solar, and energy efficiency to stem the climate crisis and protect our children’s future.”
In the midst of this Executive Order, Minnesotans are also standing up to climate change. In the past 10 years, Minnesota has seen three catastrophic floods, which claimed lives and costed Minnesota hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage. These impacts of climate change, along with “periods of excessively high temperatures, more heavy downpours, an increase in wildfires, more severe droughts, permafrost thawing, ocean acidification, and sea-level rise” are already affecting communities, Obama’s executive order stated on Friday, November 1st. These impacts will continue to affect even more communities, the public health sector, ecosystems, the economy, and the livelihood of all the families enduring the unhealthy side effects of climate disruption across the United States.
Despite the the doubt of Congress and others, it is becoming more and more evident that humans are the main cause of climate change and it’s devastating effects. The Federal Government “will continue to support scientific research, observational capabilities, and assessments necessary to improve our understanding of and response to climate change and its impacts on the Nation.” Let’s continue taking a step in the right direction; toward a future of cleaner energy, sustainable solutions, improved climate preparedness, resilience, and close cooperation by the Federal Government, agency services, operations, and programs.
So why, you say, is it important to act now in the fight against climate change? Well, the answer is clear. Climate change is no longer an issue that doesn’t impact our quality of life, it is no longer a mess our future generation has to deal with, and it is no longer a “what if” issue to deny. Climate change is here, and it’s here to stay until we take the necessary means to combat it. It’s time to #ActOnClimate!