I. Choosing a Role for Your League
Your League can play an important role in educating your community about global climate change and the need for strong action to reduce GHG emissions.
II. Grassroots Action Priorities
Learn about key issues where state and local League action can make a real difference right now. Priorities: Clean Air Defense. Energy Efficiency in Buildings. Renewable Energy.
IV. Engaging Individuals
The decisions that people make every day have an impact on climate change. Help individuals and groups from school-age kids to congregations and business communities learn about actions they can take to reduce their carbon footprint.
V. Mobilizing Your Community
Learn about programs to cut GHG emissions and adopt more sustainable best practices and how you can help advance green initiatives in your community.
VI. Promoting Public Policy
Strong action at every level of government is needed to combat global climate change. Learn about important policy initiatives at the state and federal levels and ways in which you can build the public support needed to secure their adoption and implementation.
Explore this comprehensive set of resources for in-depth information about key climate-related topics, including climate science, energy, economics, ethics, health, and national security.
RESOURCES -- CLIMATE SCIENCE
Climate Literacy: The Essential Principles of Climate Science presents key concepts about Earth's climate system, the impacts of climate change, and approaches to mitigation and adaptation. The guide was developed through an extended collaborative process involving numerous U.S. science agencies, non-governmental organizations, and individuals. (U.S. Global Change Research Program, 2009)
A companion Climate Literacy Handbook elaborates on the Essential Principles of Climate Science. Written for non-technical audiences, it provides commentary and online resources for each of the seven prinicples. The handbook is available online from the Encyclopedia of Earth.
Dire Predictions: Understanding Global Warming, by Penn State University climate scientists Michael Mann and Lee Kump, uses colorful graphics to explain and illustrate the findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. This accessible and engaging introduction to global climate change also includes detailed science-based responses to the most commonly held myths about climate change. (DK Publishing, New York, 2008)
Science as a Contact Sport: Inside the Battle to Save Earth's Climate, by the late Stanford climatologist Stephen Schneider, relates the author's four-decade personal struggle to understand the complexities of climate change and to communicate the growing threat to policy makers and the public. (National Geographic Society, Washington, DC, 2009)
Target Atmospheric CO2: Where Should Humanity Aim?, published in 2008 by James Hansen of Columbia University along with a number of coauthors, makes the case for an ultimate target of 350 parts per million (ppm) of atmospheric CO2. It is this rather technical paper that led to the formation of 350.org. The organization's website provides a layperson's explanation of the science of 350.
Since the most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report was published in 2007, a large group (26) of authors have written an update, The Copenhagen Diagnosis, 2009: Updating the World on the Latest Climate Science. It synthesizes the most relevant climate science findings from hundreds of papers published since the 2007 report was drafted, focusing on the Physical Science Basis, the topic addressed by IPCC Working Group I. The report is available online as is a set of PowerPoint slides of the figures from the report.
Recent reports from several national agencies and scientific groups document the climate changes underway in this country and around the world and recommend strategies for addressing climate change.
The State of the Climate in 2009 report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is the agency's most recent climate scorecard -- its annual compilation of observational data for ten key climate indicators.
The EPA's Climate Change Indicators in the United States presents 24 environmental indicators that describe trends related to various causes and effects of climate change. Indicators include GHG emissions, temperature, precipitation, sea level, snow and ice, and length of growing season.
The National Research Council of the National Academies is in the process of producing a suite of reports under the title America's Climate Choices. The reports focus on strategies aimed at advancing the science of climate change, limiting the magnitude of climate change, adapting to the impacts of climate change, and informing effective decisions related to climate change.
Chad Tolman, a member of the LWVUS Climate Change Task Force and moderator of the lwv-climatechange listserv, writes a monthly blog called Climate Change News to keep readers up-to-date on the latest in energy and climate science and policy. Directions for how to subscribe (for automatic email delivery) or unsubscribe are given at the end of each issue.
RealClimate is a "commentary site on climate science by working climate scientists for the interested public and journalists." Its contributors seek to provide "a quick response to developing stories and provide the context sometimes missing in mainstream commentary." The site includes a set of resources, grouped according to levels of previous knowledge, to help people get up to speed on the issue of climate change.
In his interactive blog, Dot Earth, Andrew Revkin reports on natural resources, the environment, climate change, and sustainability. Formerly a news blog, it has now moved to the Opinion section of the New York Times.
Joe Romm's blog, Climate Progress, is "an insider's view of progressive perspectives on climate science, climate solutions, and climate politics." Romm is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. His blog is sponsored by the Center for American Progress Action Fund.
Global Warming Time Bomb: Actions Needed to Avert Disaster is a presentation (slides and text) made by James Hansen to the Club of Rome Global Assembly in Amsterdam in October 2009. Hansen describes several critical climate tipping points -- points at which rapid and uncontrollable catastrophic change occurs -- and discusses the actions that are needed to return atmospheric CO2 to a safe level.
Global Warming Denial
The Skeptical Science website explores issues raised by global warming skeptics, looking to see whether their arguments have any scientific basis and examining what peer-reviewed scientific literature has to say. The site is maintained by Australian John Cook, a retired solar physicist.
A series of articles -- How to Talk to a Climate Skeptic -- by blogger Coby Beck responds to the most common arguments against global warming. The arguments are grouped into four categories: Stages of Denial, Scientific Topics, Types of Arguments, and Levels of Sophistication. The series has been vetted and applauded by the climate scientists at RealClimate, described above.
In an article contributed by climate scientist Stephen Schneider to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Scientists -- Expert credibility in climate change -- the authors report examining a data set of 1372 scientists involved in climate research. They found that 97–98 percent of the climate researchers most actively publishing in the field support the tenets outlined by the IPCC. They also found that the relative climate expertise and scientific prominence of the researchers unconvinced of those tenets to be substantially below that of those who agree with the IPCC.
In a paper titled The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change, Naomi Oreskes, Professor of History and Science Studies at the University of California at San Diego, reports on her analysis of peer-reviewed science literature in journals from 1993 to 2003 that contain the key words "climate change" in the abstract. In the 928 papers she examined, she found none that challenged the consensus position that Earth's climate is being affected by human activities. Dr. Oreskes talks about the history of the effort to deny the reality of climate change in the second half of her YouTube presentation, The American Denial of Global Warming.