Fleming Creek in winter. Photo: John Lloyd
Fleming Creek in winter. Photo: John Lloyd

“Mom, will it snow at all this winter?”

My 12-year old daughter has been especially distraught over the lack of snow this (and last) year.  She has read about climate change and heard it on the news.  She can’t understand why others (friends, other adults) are not also as alarmed as she is, and as sad about the loss of winter and, even more distressing, the imminent loss of beloved creatures like polar bears and other wildlife, innocent victims in her view.

During our last wave of strangely spring-like weather, I asked her if she’d like to go for a walk or a bike ride.  She burst into tears.  “I can’t do it!  Every time I go outside I see the grass and can’t stop thinking about if it will snow again and about global warming!”

I managed to cheer her up, but find it difficult because I share, albeit with a more adult-like reserve, the same alarm and sadness about what climate change will bring to Michigan and the Earth.

Now, with President Obama’s surprise inaugural mention of his intended action on climate change, comes hope!

Here is what he said:

“We will respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations.” – President Obama, 01/21/13

Let’s help the President make good on his word.  Now is the time to get something done, before it’s too late.

We can start by simply thanking the President for his words and telling him we support actions to reduce climate change.

We can also contact our senators and representatives and urge them to take action. (Here’s a helpful map of Congressional districts)

For guidance on how to participate in this movement to save the planet from climate change (I  know, it sounds dramatic, but it is about saving the planet), see the opportunities below:

Start at home and save energy when you save water and vice versa.  HRWC’s saving water, saves energy program has many tips for you to minimize your energy footprint.

Join the Forward on Climate Rally on February 17.  Ann Arbor’s Ecology Center is arranging bus transportation.

Get involved with HRWC’s Climate Resilient Communities project.  We need your help getting your community involved in getting “climate resilient”!

Join Bill McKibben’s group, 350.org.  Mr. McKibben is a respected author of many books on environmental issues.  He has dedicated his life in the last few years on reducing climate change.

Join the Climate Reality Project, founded by former Vice President and Nobel Laureate Al Gore.