Giving Climate Thanks
I’m assuming that after about Tuesday at noon, no one out there will be checking email much, and instead will be rushing around buying last-minute turkeys, tofurkeys, cranberries (mostly from Wisconsin, I’m proud to say – I just learned the wonderful fact that the state produces enough cranberries to give “every man, woman and child in the world with 26 cranberries.”), and other sundry items for Thursday’s dinner. So I’m sending out Cliffnotes today in the hopes that you’re still all paying attention – and keeping it light in case you’re not. (For those of you who simply MUST have our weekly news clips this week, you can always check Pat’s Picks on the Next Generation website – or follow @Pats_Picks on Twitter for up-to-the minute action.)
Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. I love the food, and the fact that it doesn’t revolve around presents, but I also love the fact that it revolves around giving thanks. This year Thanksgiving falls on Hanukkah, so it’s even more than usual a time to be grateful for our present circumstances and for the people around us who enrich our lives.
And it’s nice to take time out to give thanks. Let’s face it, if you work on climate change, it’s sometimes hard to stay positive. It’s an overwhelming issue with no silver bullet fix, and it can be hard to wake up each day with the energy and optimism to give it everything you have.
But even with that, there’s a lot to be thankful for. Here are some of mine for this year:
- I am thankful that my physicist husband is teaching my kids to develop scientific minds – they'll be the problem-solvers of tomorrow
- I am thankful that I’m able to live in a community where I don’t have to get into a car every day, because there are bike lanes and BART trains available to get me where I need to go.
- I am thankful to live in a state that’s doing all it can to move toward a cleaner and safer energy future, by embracing new technologies and new innovative means of getting them into the hands of citizens across economic lines.
- I’m thankful for Mary Nichols and the California Air Resources Board for doing the tough work of actually implementing many of those state energy and climate goals (they just pulled off another successful carbon auction last week!).
- I’m thankful for all my friends and colleagues, and the brave policymakers, who are dedicating their lives to tackling this issue: whether they’re inventing and deploying new technologies, pushing for stronger energy policies, or taking to the Senate floor every week for fifty weeks to talk about the clear and convincing science behind climate change (yes, that’s you Senator Whitehouse!), they’re all making a difference.
- I’m thankful for business leaders like Tom Steyer, Hank Paulson, and Michael Bloomberg, who are using their influence and financial expertise to ask the hard questions about what kind of risk we’re actually taking on as a country by not addressing climate change.
- And finally, I’m truly thankful to work with such wonderful colleagues as Matt James, Ann O’Leary, Matt Lewis, and my own energy and climate team of Jamesine Rogers, Ashleigh Talberth, and James Barba.
If you want to shout out your own thanks to those trying to make the world a better and more sustainable place, join the Twitter storm at #ClimateThanks. See you next week, full and happy!