everyone's arguing over where they're going to sit.
- David Suzuki
Like many people, you may have been so exhausted by the constant bickering you see that you have tuned out and turned off when the words "climate change" are even mentioned. Unfortunately, when complex information is compressed into short, and often angry, sound bites, the result can leave people frustrated, with more questions than answers.
What really is climate change?
Is climate change real?
What happens to the Earth with climate change?
Why is weather not climate change?
How do I see effects of climate change?
Does climate change impact my community? My family?
Can I really do anything about global climate change? Should I?
Although it can be confusing and disheartening to listen to the constant climate bickering on TV and other places, there are many other resources available to you to help get your questions answered. By using multiple scientific sources, you can create your own informed opinion on the topic and use that insight to guide the decisions and choices that you and your family make. As with any topic, personal knowledge is power!
There are hundreds of sites, books, lectures, and classes available on climate science and climate change from sources such as scientific collaborations, educational institutions, governmental agencies (often at local, state, and federal levels) and others. The following are a few examples of governmental, educational, and scientific sources to get you started on your climate change education journey. Some sites are more easily understood by adults, and others are more for children, so everyone in your family can be involved in learning.
NASA Global Climate Change
National Center for Science Education: What Can We Do About Climate Change?
NWF: Fast Facts Abut Climate Change
EPA: Climate Change
Department of Ecology, State of Washington: What You Can Do
American Academy of Pediatrics: Climate for Health
UMass Northeast Climate Science Center
These are but a few of the hundreds, if not thousands, of resources available to anyone who is looking for more information about our changing planet and the natural world. There are any number of additional reputable sources of climate change information that are accessible to people of all ages.
Since we all live on the same small planet, we all have both the opportunity and the responsibility to become more active in educating ourselves about our own roles within the natural world. It is time for all of us to leave behind the angry debates and TV soundbites that too often offer more noise than substance.
Today, it is up to each of us to gather information for ourselves about our changing planet from different organizations, viewpoints, and experiences. Only then, armed with facts and education, can every one of us can make better decisions about how we can positively impact the future of our planet.
and they from their parents. It is in our hands whether
our children and their children inherit the same world.
- Richard Branson