September 2019
Your monthly dose of good news
about climate change.
Did you feel that? A shift in mood, perhaps relief that your urgent need for climate action is shared by people across the globe? Climate Week unleashed a groundswell of energy, unprecedented media coverage, and more reasons than ever to feel hope for the future. In this issue we cover why now is the turning point, and what to do from here.
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Why Is Now The Turning Point?
Young people around the world are worried. They know their future is on the line , and they are leading us to a healthier, more sustainable future. But that’s not the only reason we feel a sea change. There’s also: 
Action. Climate Interactive analyzed data on the size of climate change events (see graph above). Results: The movement is growing at a faster and faster rate. This is how change happens.

Coverage. Reporters are telling stories about how climate change impacts people’s lives. Good reporting is important to inspire climate action! This month Variety , TIME , and The Economist devoted entire issues to climate change and Covering Climate Now coordinated 250+ news outlets to ensure we got the facts during climate week. MSNBC ran a 15-hour climate forum and CNN aired 7 hours of back-to-back climate town halls.

Understanding. More people are getting it. 700+ doctors signed a medical excuse note and many schools released students to attend the Climate Strikes. Millions showed up!

Science. Scientists make clear how climate change impacts our health. Reports from the IPCC , National Climate Assessment , Lancet Countdown , and the WHO used science to bring us warnings and solutions. 

Visibility. Extreme storms, droughts, and fires make climate change hard to miss. 
Reasons To Be A Climate Optimist
  1. Change always comes from the grassroots up, and the grass is growing
  2. When the federal government sleeps, cities and states get moving
  3. 300+ U.S. mayors promised to uphold the Paris Agreement
  4. States like NM, NV, CO, IA are strong on renewable energy
  5. Oceans offer untapped opportunities for mitigation and adaptation
  6. More female leaders pass more ambitious climate policies
  7. Millions of people around the world are demanding action
  8. Climate solutions aren’t a sacrifice; they improve health, economies, and jobs
Our Take On Climate Week
“We have a new generation of young people and they’re just not letting the rest of us off the hook anymore." Gina McCarthy

“Who has more at stake than the people on the planet who have the longest lifespans ahead of them?” Dr. Aaron Bernstein, Co-Director, Harvard C-CHANGE
"W e come from different nations and generations, but we're allies in the climate fight. Here's why we're optimistic." Gina McCarthy and youth activist Saya Hajebi

Friday 9/27, 10:00 PM EDT:
Watch Our Director Gina McCarthy on HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher.
So What Do We Do Now?
We made our signs, we took to the streets, we watched Greta’s passionate speech . But it’s not time to relax. The gap between our demands for climate action and promises from world leaders is still too wide. We need to keep the momentum going.
Individuals: Turn fear into action
  • Lead or join a local climate action group
  • Fridays for future will keep going, so we can keep striking 
  • Keep learning about climate challenges and solutions
  • Show up in your community when leaders make key decisions about energy
  • Find ways to cut fossil fuels out of your life: install solar, green your commute
  • If you can’t install solar, reduce your electric bill and join a community solar project
  • Tell everyone your climate story. What does climate change mean to you? 
  • For talking points and infographics, check out our climate and health resources 
For a comprehensive climate action list, check out this big compilation over at The Trouble.

Communities: Take your climate action to the next level

If you want to do more to fight the climate crisis, get involved in community-wide initiatives. Encourage your local leaders to: 

  • Plant trees to add shade and clean the air
  • Create more bike lanes
  • Replace diesel buses with electric
  • Invest in renewable energy and make solar panels more accessible 
  • Block infrastructure for fossil fuels 
  • Build electric car infrastructure
  • Incorporate sea-level rise into zoning
  • Protect wetlands

Check out and share our community climate action video !
Medical Professionals: Do more than no harm

Climate Change harms the patients that health care systems are trying to protect.

  • Demand that proposed climate policies come with a credible accounting of their health effects.
  • Prioritize research evaluating the health effects of carbon-reduction strategies.
  • Discuss climate action in ways that make it personal. Tell stories about the people whose health has been compromised by climate change in an effort to educate and influence the media, decision makers, and parents.
  • Sign the U.S. Call to Action on Climate, Health, and Equity to recognize climate change as a health emergency and to work across government agencies and with communities and businesses to prioritize action
  • Check out Climate MD, our new program that empowers physicians to transform climate change from a political issue into one that matters to every person’s health here and now.

World Leaders: Here’s what climate mobilization looks like

To fight the climate crisis globally, we need a coordinated international effort. We can all demand these things from our leaders:

  • Every country needs to activate, take action, and coordinate with other countries.
  • Each country needs to develop a plan on what climate actions they will take and how quickly.
  • We need a measure of accountability so other countries can verify that promises are kept.
  • Coordinate investment strategies for innovation.
  • Work together for comprehensive climate adaptation planning and implementation.

Did the Climate Strikes make a difference? Yes. Here’s how .
Climate Anxiety Self-Care
If you're freaking out, you're not the only one. Learn about climate anxiety groups popping up across the country. 
This quote from Greta Thunberg, which originally appeared in Heated , says it all: 

“When I started to do something—to take action, to try to make a difference instead of sitting in despair—that changed my life. Because then that gives your life meaning . . . and that’s important, because things can sometimes seem meaningless. But to know that you can actually have an impact. Really, it makes you feel a lot better. So if not to save the world, then you can engage in activism to help yourself.”