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  • New Environment-Maine report examines climate changes through a generational perspective

    The lives and lively-hoods of Casco Bay fishermen are at risk now because of climate change. New repot brings generational perspective to the issue. Photo by Ramona du Houx

     

    By Ramona du Houx 

    Environment Maine released a report March 31st that investigates how climate change impacts five generations. The report was released on the Maine State Pier, which is under threat of flooding due to sea-level rise and more frequent severe storms. Casco Bay waters rose five inches during 2009 -2010.

    Scientists agree that the United States needs to cut pollution by at least 80 percent by 2050 to protect future generations from the worst impacts of global warming. Environment Maine urged Senators Collins and King to lead on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Clean Power Plan (CPP) and not delay on finalizing the plan and setting it out for implementation.

    “We can no longer delay – Maine’s way of life and future generations are in danger, “ said Laura Dorle, Campaign Organizer with Environment Maine. “Together we can take action on climate change to build a stronger, healthier, and more secure future for Mainers to come.”

    The report, Dangerous Inheritance: The Hotter, More Extreme Climate that We’re Passing Down to America’s Young, examines changes in temperature, storm intensity and sea level rise through the eyes of five different generations. New Englanders of today are experiencing 28 percent more rain and snowfall than people did in the 1970s.

    The Millennial Generation entered adulthood during the hottest ten-year period in the last 100 years. Larger storms have increased 20 to 30 percent in Maine, impacting the states economy as well as individuals especially the families and businesses of Maine’s coastal communities.

    We can no longer delay – Maine’s way of life and future generations are in danger, “ said Laura Dorle, Campaign Organizer with Environment Maine. Photo at the reports release of Dorle by Alex Cornell du Houx

    The report’s multi generational perspective gives readers a deeper understanding how lives will be impacted by climate change directly and through loved ones.

    “Four years ago, I became a grandfather and last year I gained another grandson. What sort of world would these little guys be living in when they’re my age?” posed faith leader, Allen Armstrong. “Our scientists have identified the climate change impacts that will occur during the lifetimes of my grandchildren if we continue with business as usual. We cannot stand by and fail our grandchildren – we must act on climate change now, starting with the Clean Power Plan.”  

    “I don’t want to imagine a future where my daughter, Ridley’s, health is at risk and the places she holds dear are no longer what they used to be,” said City Councilor Kristen Cloutier, “As a mother, I want to ensure the best possible future for Ridley. This is why I believe we need to act on climate change now.”

    Casco Bay waters rose five inches during 2009 -2010 so Environment Maine released their report on how generations will be effected by climate changeon the state pier. Photo by Alex Cornell du Houx

    “My generation has entered a world where it has been the hottest decade in the last 100 years, Portland’s waters are already rapidly rising, and things will only get worse unless we take action now,” said Iris SanGiovanni, “Maine Students for Climate Justice urge Senator Collins and King to be leaders on the Clean Power Plan.”

    The EPA is in the process of finalizing standards to limit carbon pollution form dirty power plants. As proposed, the EPA’s Clean Power Plan (CPP) will result in the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions from the power sector by approximately 30 percent from 2005 levels by 2030 nationwide. Each state has broad flexibility to create plans to best achieve the emission reduction targets. Maine’s reduction target is 14 percent. 

    Call your members of Congress, and your local lawmakers to help hold back climate change today.