Organizing for Climate Change Action
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Video of the OFA Climate Change Symposium, August 15, 2013 -- Golden, Colorado
Video of Brad Udall Presenting at a Boulder Climate Change Forum, August 14, 2013 (Note:the video quality is relatively poor, but the content is top shelf.)
Chuck Kutscher Debunking Climate Skeptics at the Colorado State Capitol, January, 2012
President Obama's Speech on Climate Change, June 25, 2013
Great N.Y. Times Op-Ed from 4 Past Republican EPA Administrators in Support of Obama's Climate Change Action Plan, August 1, 2013
White House Report -- Colorado: The Threat of Carbon Pollution
We have a moral obligation to leave our children a planet that’s not polluted or damaged, and by taking an all-of-the-above approach to develop homegrown energy and steady, responsible steps to cut carbon pollution, we can protect our kids’ health and begin to slow the effects of climate change so we leave a cleaner, more stable environment for future generations. Climate change impacts including severe weather, asthma attacks, and prolonged allergy seasons are affecting our security, our economy, and our communities. In 2012 alone, the cost of weather disasters exceeded $110 billion in the United States, and climate change will only increase the frequency and intensity of these events. Today, we already set limits for arsenic, mercury and lead, but we impose no limits on how much carbon pollution our power plants release. Carbon pollution is contributing to a higher risk of asthma attacks and more frequent and severe storms, floods, heat waves, and wildfires, driving up food prices and threatening our communities. The President’s plan is a comprehensive approach to cutting the pollution that causes climate change and threatens public health, setting us on a path to make our communities healthier, safer, and more resilient.
THE IMPACT OF POLLUTION AND EXTREME WEATHER IN COLORADO
In 2011, power plants and major industrial facilities in Colorado emitted more than 50 million tons of carbon pollution metric tons of carbon pollution—that’s equal to the yearly pollution from more than 11 million cars.
Recent incidents provide a reminder of the impacts to our public health and costs due to extreme weather in Colorado. Although we cannot say that climate change is responsible for any individual event, climate change is already increasing our risks from these events.
ANTICIPATED CLIMATE-RELATED RISKS IN THE SOUTHWEST
Temperatures in the Southwest are increasing more quickly than in other regions of the United States as a result of climate change. These increases can have important impacts on human health, particularly in cities, where 90 percent of the region’s population lives. Decreases in air quality during heat waves, for example, can worsen the effects of respiratory illnesses and heart disease; high temperatures also increase the risk of heat stress. Even small increases in temperature can dry soils and vegetation, increasing the risk of wildfires. In 2012, wildfires burned 9.2 million acres across eight states, reducing air quality, damaging property and costing more than $1 billion. Water resources, already over-tapped in many areas, will become even scarcer as a result of increased evaporation and snowmelt caused by higher temperatures, affecting agriculture, hydroelectric power plants, and water availability in growing cities such as Phoenix and Las Vegas. This will also reduce groundwater recharge, which, combined with heavy groundwater pumping, will lower water tables and limit water availability and make it harder to support the Southwest region’s cities and agricultural production. Although water scarcity will increase, the Southwest will also see increased frequency and altered timing of flooding because of increased intensity of rainfalls when they do occur, leading to increased risks to people, natural resources, and infrastructure.
CUTTING CARBON POLLUTION AND INCREASING RESILIENCE IN COLORADO
Climate change is a long-term problem, but we can make substantial progress through a series of steady and responsible steps. The President’s plan builds from progress already underway to work with states, local communities, and the private sector to reduce carbon pollution and to prepare our Nation for the impacts that cannot be avoided. Since 2009, President Obama has taken a number of common sense measures to combat carbon pollution, including:
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