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eNewsletter 2010
Friday, 12 November 2010 11:38

Trans-Antarctica Expedition Celebrates 20 and more

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Give to the Max Day

Special Opportunity!

Give To The Max Day

As someone who supports reducing our global warming pollution and educating and empowering a new generation of climate leaders, we know you’ll want to mark your calendar for this special day where your donations are eligible for a $1,000 match! Help us create a clean energy future by making a gift on Nov 16 or any day.

Letter from the Executive Director

tae_1990Will Steger's Trans-Antarctica Expedition 20th Anniversary

We have some very important milestones in Will’s history and ours to celebrate! Will was the featured speaker at Hamline University’s Center for Global Environmental Education 20th anniversary on November 4th, which he helped to establish in 1990.

In early December, Will Steger's Trans-Antarctica Expedition, the historic seven month, 3,741-mile International Trans-Antarctica Expedition in 1989–90 is celebrating its 20th Anniversary in Minnesota!

We’ll be sharing updates about these events and ways you can be involved in the coming weeks!

Just as we are excited about these celebrations, it is important that we also take a step back and understand the recent political shift and what it means for our work.

We’ve spent the past two weeks interpreting the midterm elections and what the results mean for our state, regional and national efforts to advance climate and clean energy policies. The scoop:

Nationally: Despite the national shift towards more conservatives in Congress, this did not stop California from defeating Proposition 23 and saving its landmark climate legislation, one of the first policies to price carbon and promote clean energy in the U.S. The legislation supports more than 12,000 clean tech companies, over 500,000 clean tech employees, and encourages $10 billion in private clean tech investment. It has been a huge success and an example of how climate policy can encourage economic growth. The top three election issues seemed to be the economy, healthcare, and the size of the government. While the party in power usually loses seats in the midterms, these losses were pretty significant (60-70 in the House, 6-8 in the Senate). Among Democrats in close races,who voted for Waxman-Markey (the climate bill that passed in the House), 61% lost the election (Source: E&E). Interestingly though, among Democrats in close races, 79 % of those who voted against Waxman-Markey lost – faring even worse. Also interesting is that 7 of the 8 Republicans who voted for Waxman-Markey were re-elected. So it looks like being a Democrat, rather than supporting climate policy, was the real fatal flaw in this election.

Midwest: Most of the newly elected Midwest Governors should be reasonably pragmatic and open-minded when it comes to clean energy, environmental protection, conservation and high-speed rail.  However, the results do not bode well for support of federal climate change actions or for early movement on the Midwest Governors' Association's climate initiative.

Minnesota: While Democrats lost control of the state legislature and the governor’s race is still in recount mode, we do have an opportunity to shape Minnesota’s role in growing a clean energy economy and continuing to follow California’s lead.

If all the news has got you down, we really loved this piece by The Onion.

Sincerely,

Nicole Rom, Executive Director

Friday, 10 September 2010 09:52

Fall Education Edition - WSF Out in the World!

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Letter from the Executive Director

As we move into fall and the beginning of school, our education and emerging leaders programs are taking off! With the support of our staff – Kristen who manages our K-12 Education Program, Abby who directs our Youth/Emerging Leaders Program, and Richmond Appleton who is coordinating our high school program, YEA! Minnesota, we are expanding our reach among youth and educators across the Minnesota and the Midwest this fall - join us at one of these many events and please spread the word about our resources!

Sincerely,

Nicole Rom, Executive Director

Wednesday, 08 September 2010 09:58

Climate Historian Visits Minnesota!

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Letter from the Executive Director

Letter In early July, climate science was vindicated by several British commissions and in the United States from the dubious "Climate Gate" scandal. As Jim Lenfestey eloquently captured in a recent op-ed in the Minneapolis-based Star Tribune, "most importantly, all review panels affirmed the underlying science and thereby the established scientific consensus that human activity is warming the planet." Thus, the rigor of climate science is no longer in doubt.

This was the theme of many of our summer events this month. Dr. Naomi Oreskes, climate historian and author of Merchants of Doubt joined us for a reception and public forum where she spoke to over 250 people about the tactics used by corporations to confuse and misinform the public of the validity of climate science. She also captured the attention of educators at our 5th annual Summer Institute for Climate Change Education, who were most interested in understanding climate change basics and tools to address the topic in the classroom.

In more unfortunate news, the U.S. Senate did not proceed with a comprehensive climate bill this summer. It truly is a failure of leadership in this country. Billions of dollars in private investment is waiting for a price on carbon, a signal that will provide the necessary innovation in the new clean energy economy. We need our Senators to act on behalf of all Americans and not just the oil and coal industries. In open letter to those working on climate change, 1sky eloquently captured what must happen next:

"We must redouble our efforts to unite American society across all divides in an unyielding call for action on the scope and scale of the enormous challenge and opportunity we are confronting. We are galvanized by the understanding that the political, human-rights, and economic repercussions of climate change transcend the "environmental issue" label, and present a nationwide challenge requiring a unified response. As United States citizens, we understand our moral and ethical responsibility to act with resolve -- both as members of a global community, and as the leading per-capita emitters of global-warming pollution. We must succeed in building a nationwide movement that changes the politics of what is possible to deliver what is necessary; our very lives depend on it."

August 31 marks the end of our fiscal year. We would appreciate any last minute support of our programming!

Kind regards,

Nicole Rom
Executive Director

Thursday, 15 July 2010 14:22

Help us win 20k - Today Only!

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Letter from the Executive Director

This month we are hosting a small group of European students studying climate change and sustainability through the University of Minnesota at Will Steger’s Homestead in Ely, MN, revising our Educator Resource binder in preparation for our Summer Institute, and gearing up for August’s educational events and Midwest youth summit.

With your support, we can continue to fight climate change and push for solutions. You can support us this month in a variety of ways!

Support our work through Chase Community Giving – vote for us on Facebook – we only need 900 votes to be in the top 200 nonprofits that are eligible to receive $20,000 – Expires Today.

Know an educator? Tell them about our Summer Institute for Climate Change Education – participants can join in person or via webinar.

You can also contribute to us directly – online or in the mail.

Finally, if you are in Minnesota, join us as we host Dr. Naomi Oreskes, climate historian, on Wed. August 11th at 5 p.m. at the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs for a private reception preceding a free public forum at 6 p.m. Learn more about our special guest and her newest book in this article.

Thank you for your interest and support of our work!

Nicole Rom
Executive Director

Friday, 11 June 2010 10:59

Quarterly Education Edition

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SIGN UP TODAY for our Summer Institute for Climate Change Education

The 5th annual Summer Institute for Climate Change Education is on Thursday August 12th, 8:30-4:30 pm at the University of Minnesota Continuing Education & Conference Center in St. Paul, MN. Featuring renowned climate science historian and author Dr. Naomi Oreskes and Minnesota's own climatologist Dr. Mark Seeley.

This year we will look back on our last five years of climate change education outreach and curriculum development and take time to “Go Back to the Basics.”

Sign up online or download an application.


Our keynote speaker is in the news a lot lately!
For a sneak peak on our Summer Institute's keynote speaker Naomi Oreskes. Listen to the podcast produced by Center for Inquiry.

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