RFS's Community Climate Change Initiative

INFORMATION

It's a rare situation when both positive and negative events, both the pro's and con's of an issue, are urging the same action. This seems to be the case with Climate Change.

On the one hand,

  • 2014, last year, is the hottest year on record (Global Temperature)
  • 2015, this year, is the hottest first-half year (Jan-June) on record (Global Temperature)
  • 2015, is the coldest first-half year on record in the Bangor area (portends hottest
  • elsewhere)
  • 2015, El Nino (extreme weather precursor) is tracking to be 50 times stronger than
  • normal
  • 2015 Storms, tornadoes, floods, droughts and other forms of extreme weather abound

On the other hand,

  • The Pope's Encyclical, Laudato Si, and planned US speaking is garnering mainstream attention
  • Naomi Klein provides a clear statement of what is required to alter our destructive course
  • There is a Climate Change presidential candidate in the wings
  • At any time, we can let go of the belief that we are powerless to do anything about the “human activity” which scientists tell us is driving Climate Change.

During his recent Climate Change presentation to a gathering of Maine Fulbright Scholars at Castine's MMA, Paul Mayewski, head of the UM Climate Change Institute in Orono, stated that the scientific evidence is “incontrovertible” and “is happening.” In broad strokes, he sketched the explanation of the mechanics of Climate Change in simple language. It all has to do with the path of the Jet Stream and the temperature gradient between the warm and cool air which it separates. As the temperature gradient is reduced (by global warming) the Jet Stream wanders from its normal West to East path and may establish a new pattern. It did just this last winter when the Jet Stream dove South and around our area bringing us Arctic weather that persisted. Unfortunately, the change can happen quickly and, then, persist.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Volunteers needed for Green Energy. As described in the 'Gleanings' of our last meeting, an interest group in this area should be formed. Much is happening here. Rob Shetterly is organizing a Solar Farm Presentation. Carol Gregor has identified a wind energy path. Kel House agreed to do a Weatherization and Green Energy Session. At our last meeting, a number of folks stressed the importance of CC information being part of the education of our youth. An opportunity has opened up in a local school and is in need of a few of us to provide some interpersonal power to the task, that is, engage staff and build relationships. (In this regard, we should all be aware of Rob's Samantha Smith Challenge.)

Anyone interested in 'brainstorming' a CC presentation roughly related to Oneness (“I am because we are”): the Spirituality of Ecology, please let me know. We plan to preview short sections of 3 DVD's: Dick Kane's, Protecting the Nature of Maine which includes a CC statement by Sen. King, Praises for the World a mixed performance-art 'lovefest' of the Earth, and Journey of the Universe, part of our past Cosmology Lenten Series. Then, to choose a theme (or focus) which may be conveyed by a combination of: ritual, story, dance, chant, song, parable, meditation, etc. All other ideas and directions for a program are welcomed.

Tony Ferrara
(excerpted from August 2015 RFS Ebb and Flow Newsletter)