Used with Permission

Used with Permission

At the start of each New Year, Bill and Melinda Gates outline their goals for their organization – the Gates Foundation – in an Annual Letter. In their 2015 letter, released on January 22st, they also share their goals and hopes for the next 15 years.

This year they have announced one big bet for the next 15 years: “The lives of people in poor countries will improve faster in the next 15 years than at any other time in history. And their lives will improve more than anyone else’s.”

As Climate Mamas and Papas, we know full well that the impacts of climate change, which are already upon us, can throw the best laid plans into upheaval. It’s interesting to note that this year’s Gates letter is predicated by the following statement on climate change:

“It is fair to ask whether the progress we’re predicting will be stifled by climate change. The most dramatic problems caused by climate change are more than 15 years away, but the long-term threat is so serious that the world needs to move much more aggressively — right now — to develop energy sources that are cheaper, can deliver on demand, and emit zero carbon dioxide. The next 15 years are a pivotal time when these energy sources need to be developed so they’ll be ready to deploy before the effects of climate change become severe. Bill is investing time in this work personally (not through our foundation) and will continue to speak out about it.”

Some of the highlights in the Gates 2015 Letter include the following breakthroughs: Continue reading

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Large_NYC_MARATHONThe climate solutions starting gun sounded in late 2014 and President Obama charged out of the gate, leading the pack. He immediately took a commanding lead by announcing an historic deal with China to lower greenhouse gas emissions, thereby setting the stage for other countries to make significant cuts in their emissions as well. Rather then continue the rhetoric on climate solutions bantered about on the international stage for more then 20 years, this agreement generated real hope that world leaders will make real commitments, slashing emissions and protecting the world from the worst economic and security risks of climate change when they meet in Paris at the end of this year.

President Obama’s current race for climate solutions follows his Climate Action Plan announced in the summer of 2013 and the subsequent Clean Power Plan in 2014; both of which have as bedrock the lowering of greenhouse gas emissions, in particular from US power plants – both new and existing.

DrawTheLine_LogoThere is much at stake, as we Climate Mamas and Papas know well, and so very, very much to loose. On the face of it President Obama has taken a commanding lead and we applaud and welcome his forceful announcements on the urgency of the climate crisis. Building on his climate plans, the President surged ahead early in 2015 by threatening in not so many words to veto the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, the proverbial “line in the sand” for many climate activists, Climate Mama include! In his 2015 State of the Union (SOTU) address the President pointed to the hypocrisy and obsession that many in the US Congress have with a single oil pipeline as he underscored the need to do more on climate change, based on overwhelming scientific evidence… Continue reading

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sandrasenecaOur Climate Mamas and Papas are sharing with us many of their hopes and dreams for the New Year: healthy children, clean air and water for us all to breath, a meaningful decision in Paris, strong greenhouse gas reductions; and many other important powerful and possible ideas.

We are excited to watch and participate as the climate movement spreads it’s wings in 2015. Parents and grandparents are organizing and coming together around the country to demand a renewable and sustainable future and now for us all.

But what are our children thinking? Over the next few months we will be asking children around the country, of all ages, what their hopes are for this coming year. Ask your children this weekend and share their hopes and dreams with us. We would love to hear from you!

College student and Millennial Michelle Aboodi, one of our star interns at ClimateMama, starts the ball rolling as shares her hopes and resolutions for the New Year with us.

The Environmentalist’s Resolutions
by Michelle Aboodi

As we enter the New Year on the coat tails of Governor Cuomo banning fracking, Mayor de Blasio’s ban restaurants from using plastic foam, and the U.S. and China coming to an agreement on reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 2025, millennials have a lot to be grateful for and a lot of work to do for the future of climate change. The trouble for millennials, as with any generation, is that there are so many causes and so little time. Continue reading

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IMG_6278On Tuesday, January 13th, 2015, all around the United States – parents, children, grandparents, preachers, teachers and farmers – folks from all walks and corners of life will be getting together to host events to show President Obama “we have his back” and stand with him as we all say NO (AGAIN!), to the Keystone XL pipeline and YES to a renewable, sustainable future and now.

Find an event near you. Our ClimateMama will be speaking at an event in Bloomfield, NJ at 4pm. If you happen to be in the neighborhood join us! If not, her message to Climate Mamas and Papas is below. Bottom line: “We are putting our elected officials on notice. We want them to join us and lead the way to a sustainable future or get out of our way as we go there without them.” Continue reading

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IMG_3864Back in 2013, we shared information with our Climate Mamas and Papas about a proposed infrastructure project just off the coasts of New York City and the New Jersey shore, that to us sounded more like a campfire horror story, rather then a real life multi-million dollar business proposal. This story is “back again” and is being shared both on line and in person by our Federal government and we wanted to make sure it is on your radar too.

Public hearings held in New York and New Jersey on January 7th and 8th drew more then 1000 concerned citizens. These hearings were announced just before Christmas, and required a herculean review of an 1800 page Environmental Impact Statement over the holidays. Yet at hearings in both New York and New Jersey 100′s of people came prepared and informed to make statements and 99% of these statements made where in strong opposition to this crazy proposal.

Never mind that world scientists are telling us we must keep 90% of ALL known fossil fuels (including natural gas) in the ground if we have a hope of averting catastrophic climate change. And that infrastructure projects like this just perpetuate our addiction to and dependance on fossil fuels. We know you know this! But for so many other obvious reasons, which we will point out below, this is just a ridiculous project, and a waste of our time and money even to seriously consider. Yet here we are.

Standing Room only in Eatontown, NJ January 8th, 2015 Port Ambrose Hearing

Standing Room only in Eatontown, NJ January 8th, 2015 Port Ambrose Hearing

Imagine that in 2014 no natural gas was IMPORTED into the United States, at ALL. In fact, over the past few years, 4 Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) EXPORT facilities have been approved by the federal government, and 14 other projects have submitted to the Federal Regulatory Energy Commission for approval, because of the oil and gas industries claims of “huge” amounts of natural gas in the US now available because of fracking, so much in fact that they are telling us we have more then we need. This alone should raise some serious “red flags” regarding a proposal to build an IMPORT facility. Continue reading

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Welcoming 2015 as we Celebrate 5 Years of ClimateMama!

As the saying goes…”Time flies ..”

climate-mama-adFive years ago, ClimateMama became the first “entrant” into the climate space speaking solely through and for parents; expressing our concerns about climate change and sharing our hopes and ideas for climate solutions. Climate Mama and Papa voices have helped educate hundreds of thousands of parents around the world, and have inspired and empowered actions in the fight for climate solutions and in advancing climate hope.

We are happy to report that the climate parent space is now getting very “crowded” and much more robust, as partner organizations like: The Mothers Project, Moms Clean Air Force, Mothers Out Front, and Climate Parents, to name a few, are now not only well recognized but also making HUGE waves and speaking loudly for parents around the country; helping to change legislation, point out injustices and put climate change solutions on the “front burner.”

The ClimateMama social media presence on Facebook and Twitter is well established, and we are increasingly the “go to resource” for local, regional, national and international media – bloggers and mainstream media alike – where they get their “climate news” and the place they go to, to take the “pulse of parents” on climate. We delight in showcasing the exciting opportunities that climate change presents, encouraging and promoting innovation and creativity and at the same time empowering actions and providing hope.

As well, we are proud to be an active and outspoken voice and force on anti-fracking campaigns around the US, and a participant in working to slow down fossil fuel production and infrastructure development the world over. The facts are in, and we know clearly that fossil fuels not only threaten our children’s future, but also are harming our children’s health and their now. At the same time we are working with many partners to jumpstart a renewable energy revolution. At ClimateMama we feel strongly that promoting a “transition” to renewables, through fossil fuels of any kind, is a false promise which provides no bridge, only a dangerous and deadly cliff.

pcmcollage2In 2015 we will continue our tradition of featuring many wonderful Climate Mamas and Papas from around the world and showcasing international, national, regional and local climate campaigns from partners, both big and small. We also look forward to receiving and posting, guest posts from experts and regular folks alike, who share their stories, ideas and plans that create climate HOPE for our future and our now. Be in touch if you are interested in having your news and stories shared with our Climate Mama Community..

Here’s just a “small slice” of some of the things ClimateMama has been a part of this past year:

+Co-hosted, educational forum: “Today’s Fossil Fuels and the Future of Our Children’s Health” at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, NYC
+Organizer of kids and families “national block” for the Peoples Climate March, NYC
+Worked with RAN to “connect the dots” on Climate Change and Palm Oil production, including launching a petition targeting Pepsico which over 100,000 people world wide signed, demanding that Pepsico LEAD on sustainable palm oil production
+In Partnership with The Mothers Project, lead a group of mothers in the NorthEast in a campaign to have ConEdision look closely at radon in fracked gas (look for more on this in 2015!)
+Hosted one of the productions of the Off Broadway show, Extreme Whether, featuring Arctic Ice Scientist, Dr. Jennifer Francis in the “Talk Back,” NYC
+Featured as first Global Mom in Action, by the Global Moms Challenge
+Featured as the Sustainable Jersey’s October Hero
+Featured Climate Leader on Climate Reality…
+Posts on MSNBC, USAID, Moms for Social Good, Green Divas…

We are excited about our new and ongoing collaborations with partners like The Mothers Project, IMatterNow, The Women’s Earth and Climate Caucus, Climate Reality, RainForest Action Network, GreenPeace, Beyond Extreme Energy Campaign, Sane Energy, Green Divas Radio…and the list goes on and on…!

2015 promises to be a year of collaboration and growth for the climate movement broadly, as social, environmental and climate justice play increasingly prominent roles in education and advocacy on climate change.

Please stay tuned and stay in touch. If you don’t already follow us on Twitter or Facebook, please do so now. Make sure to join our mailing list as well, so that you regularly receive our 2015 bi-monthly newsletters, don’t miss anything on ClimateMama in 2015!

IMG_1658To all our Climate Mamas and Papas, a big, warm and grateful THANK YOU. You have helped us grow into a trusted national representative and voice for parents on climate change. We look forward to your active participation in 2015 as we make sure our voices are heard loud and clear as we continue to build climate hope.

2015 is already shaping up to be THE year of climate action. Together, we are and will move the “boulders” farther and faster up the hill, as we clear the path for a clean, healthy and renewable future and now for our children and for us all.

It won’t be easy, but together we can and must continue to practice what we preach as we put our Mantra into action by: “Telling the truth, showing that actions DO speak louder then words, and not being afraid as we build climate hope.”

Yours in Solidarity,

Climate Mama

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imagesGetting together at the holidays with family and friends is what many of us look forward to all year long. It also is a time that can be very stressful, where differences of opinions can create family ‘dramas’ which may seem better left to day time soap operas. Many topics we might want to talk about are often left “off the table” and not discussed. We encourage you this year, to take up some of these topics that you otherwise would not, and engage your children, your family and friends.

This guest post, “What Vote?” by New York University student Michelle Aboodi raises many important points and offers some excellent advice about why we all should be exercising our democratic right to vote. This right has been fought for in many wars, and many people have lost their lives so that we can vote. Yet, it seems that, across all age groups, we are not exercising this hard fought for right.

With so many people now taking to the streets over critical issues like equality, climate justice, and human rights, exercising our right to vote so that we ensure that our elected representatives hear us and really represent us, is critical. Take a moment to share this post and bring this important discussion to your holiday table…


Climate Mama

What Vote?
By Michelle Aboodi

googleimagesvotingAt the age of ten, we get the glory of being double-digits.  In many cultures and religions, the passage from childhood to adulthood begins at age thirteen. We work to earn the ability to drive at the age of sixteen. At eighteen, in the United States, we have the opportunity to participate in democracy and cast our ballot for the people we want to make countrywide decisions and draft laws for us to follow. Elections impact my future and the future of the people and place I love. Turning eighteen meant that I could be more of an active political participant and I was excited at the possibilities for the future. Continue reading

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Photo ©2014 Julie Dermansky for Earthworks

Photo ©2014 Julie Dermansky for Earthworks

On December 14, 2014 we lost a champion, a warrior and a leader.

Theo Colborn “connected the dots.” She dedicated the last 30 years of her life to “compiling and disseminating the scientific evidence on the health and environmental problems caused by low level exposures to chemicals that interfere with development and function called, endocrine disruptors.’

She made the case that not only by keeping our “eyes wide shut” are we pushing our planet towards climate chaos, but through our reliance and expansion of fossil fuel production, we are creating multiple global health pandemics, and poisoning our children’s bodies forever.

In her last essay dated November 14, 2014, THE OVERLOOKED CONNECTION BETWEEN HUMAN HEALTH AND FOSSIL GASES, Dr. Colborn states: “Over the last 50 years as exposure to chemicals derived from fossil gases has increased so have the number of global pandemics attacking the human endocrine system.”

seenoevilkids“In the US alone, almost half the individuals born today will become diabetic and/or obese; one of every 88 babies born has autism spectrum disorder. For boys it’s one in 54. The cost of treatment and care for these problems along with infertility, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s Disorders, and hormone driven cancers are in the trillions but are in-estimable because they are increasing so rapidly. All of these disorders have been traced back to prenatal, early life, and/or adult exposure to chemicals derived from these oil and gas condensates that interfere with the normal function of the endocrine system that assures species integrity and perpetuity. Before the 1930s these ailments were rare.”

Take some time today, and learn more about Theo Colborn, mother, scientist, warrior, champion and hero. It’s Do Something Wednesday at ClimateMama, so why don’t you share Theo’s story and good work with someone you know today and talk to the kids in your life about what she was doing on their behalf.

Knowledge is power, and we need all the power we can get to fight AGAINST fossil fuels and FOR a renewable, sustainable future for our children and ourselves.


Climate Mama

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10380888_796289300437716_4491939067659815859_nDisappointment, rage, and grief – all of these emotions and more were expressed by delegates at the latest round of United Nations climate negotiations held in Lima, Peru. Many of these negotiators are also parents and grandparents who – on December 14th, 2014, in the waning hours of the latest round of climate negotiations – saw their hopes and ours, dashed.

This isn’t the first time that we have put our hopes in government negotiators, and they have turned up short on solutions and long on talk. Through our work with grassroots organizations in the United States and around the world we are betting on the success of everyday people, in place of national and international climate negotiators, as we all work to solve and find solutions to human created climate change, the greatest challenge humanity will ever face.

Local people, fighting against fossil fuel giants and infrastructure in their own home towns are successfully joining forces and slowing things down, while at the same time pushing, demanding and creating renewable energy options, which scientists are telling us and mother nature is showing us is what we must do. After many years working on the international stage, I do personally recognize that the international treaties and agreements which our governments create and then ratify can be hugely important for us all, in particular as we hold our governments accountable for these commitments. Unfortunately we can’t put all our faith and hope in these agreements; the reality that they will materialize with binding commitments, is extremely slim.

To help visualize this, yet maintain hope in our future, join us and watch a powerful movie trailer of the award winning film on Climate Justice and Climate Change, 2 Degrees, by Jeff Canin. This movie helps us understand clearly the limitations of international climate negotiations while at the same time it gives us hope by introducing us to a community that effectively and successfully takes a stand against fossil fuels and for renewables. We loved this movie so much, that we are helping Jeff share and promote it, in it’s entirety. Through ClimateMama you now have the opportunity to purchase 2 Degrees directly. Watch it and share it with your friends, children, neighbors and community, find out how to do so, by clicking on the link below. Continue reading

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16072800-mmmainOn December 9th, 2014 I attended and testified at the open public meeting of the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC). I was truly humbled, awed, and incredibly inspired. Over 50 citizens, from the ages of 11 to 80, testified before the Commission against the PennEast pipeline. The PennEast is a 36 inch fracked gas pipeline that if approved, would travel 108 miles, 87% of which would be within the boundaries of the Delaware River watershed – a watershed which 15 million people rely upon. This pipeline and it’s ensuing compressor stations and associated infrastructure, would travel from the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania, to an end point in Mercer County New Jersey.

PennEast is one of a growing number of pipelines that are being pushed aggressively in the northeastern United States by the oil and gas industry. It is also one of the growing numbers of oil and gas infrastructure projects that is facing increasingly vocal community opposition. People are waking up to the local, regional and international threats posed by these projects which are now frequently coming directly through their back yards.

drbcGrandmothers, children, municipal council members, farmers, teachers, art historians, poets, professors and environmental organization and community leaders, one after another took their place at the podium. We all stood just below an iconic photo of George Washington crossing the Delaware; unanimously, each person called on the Commission to reject the project and preserve and protect our rights to clean air, clean water, and a livable and sustainable future. Each person spoke respectfully, intelligently, with thoughtfulness and foresight, and each person added something different and unique to the overwhelming reasons why this pipeline is wrong on so many, many levels.

The PennEast project proposal will be the first pipeline project where the DRBC has acknowledged its jurisdiction over an entire pipeline. This is an important decision, as many regional, municipal and federal bodies, including the Federal Regulatory Energy Commission, regularly segment pipeline projects, such that they only approve a “piece of it” neither considering the cumulative impacts of the project, nor the project in it’s entirety. Continue reading

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