Climate Change

helping_hand Climate Change, Climate Justice

The Itom Ae Principle

The short-term goal of the Itom Ae Principle is to educate the general public, businesses, and organizations on the environmental and economic benefits of energy conservation in order to combat the issues of climate change at a local level.

The long-term goal is transition off the use of fossil fuels to renewable energy sources through the elimination of coal-fired power plants and creation of solar/wind farms; to transition coal and power plant workers to the renewable energy job market; and to address the impacts of sea level rise through the implementation of green infrastructure.

Our coalition works to educate and encourage local municipalities to pass local ordinances/resolutions addressing a declaration of a climate emergency and the rights of nature bill of rights. The rights of nature bill of rights campaign initiative includes a referendum being placed on our local ballot through the gathering of petitions.

As part of our “Fighting climate change by planting one tree at a time” campaign we work with the local school district and City’s Parks and Recreation Department planting trees in city parks. Students from nearby schools are engaged in the process.

We are part of the Plastic Pollution Coalition. We have a strong plastic free program that has spurred the elimination of plastic straw use and reduction of single-use plastic bags and bottles. The use of plastics is a contributor to the climate change emergency because it is estimated that about 12 million barrels of oil a year are used in making of just plastic bags (manufactured from feedstock) with an average American throwing away about 10 bags a week.

We are actively engaged with the general public, government, businesses, environmental organizations, marginalized and LGBTTQQIAAP communities, youth groups, agriculture, and faith-based groups.

Hurricane Michael’s Health Research Project

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, January 22, 2020

Media Contact:
Salome Garcia, CLEO Institute, (786)387-5111, Salome@CLEOInstitute.org
Mary Gutierrez, Earth Ethics, Inc, (850)549-7472, earthethicsaction@gmail.com

Research aims to understand the public health implications of Hurricane Michael throughout North Florida communities

Earth Ethics, Inc. and The CLEO Institute, a Florida based non-profit organization focusing on climate literacy, education and advocacy, have partnered up with The University of Miami Miller School of Medicine to understand the public health implications of Hurricane Michael. Hurricane Michael brought intense winds, heavy rain, and life-threatening storm surge, that wreaked havoc in Northwest Florida. Over a year later, people living in the areas hit hardest by the storm are still working to pick up and rebuild their lives. The stresses of hurricanes are great. Hurricanes can cause job loss, ruined homes, limited or no access to food, water, healthcare, and the loss of electricity for prolonged periods. Our citizens are left in tenuous economic, health, and safety situations.

This research, utilizing short resident surveys collected by volunteers, aims to understand effects Hurricane Michael had upon the physiological and mental health of residents in the counties of Bay, Gulf, Franklin, Calhoun, Liberty, Leon and Gadsden counties.

“The burdens of extreme weather events and sea level rise, driven by a changing climate, are only getting worse for communities,” Said Salome Garcia, program manager for the North Florida office of The CLEO Institute.

Mary Gutierrez, Executive Director of Earth Ethics added, “So often the Panhandle of Florida is overlooked or forgotten when addressing the needs of the State or addressing natural disasters, this survey will help people realize that they are not forgotten and we are working to see that their needs are met. This is important because we can expect to see an increase in intensity and frequency of storm events.”

Hurricanes gain and lose wind speed based, in part, on the temperature of the ocean water below. Gulf water is 4 to 5 degrees warmer than average, which has the capacity to increase a hurricane’s wind speed by 15 to 20 miles per hour – enough to shift a storm to the next category of severity. The effect of warmer water temperature of hurricane intensity can be seen in the way Hurricane Michael grew in intensity, from winds of 90mph to 155 mph in less than 33 hours.

“It is people of color, and low-income communities who feel the worst impacts of the climate crisis. This research will allow us get a better understanding at the public health implications people face in the months preceding a climate change fueled storm such as Michael.” Garcia added.

Earth Ethics, a non-profit organization that focuses on environmental and social issues, outreach and education, advocacy and action, is looking for participants throughout the panhandle area. If you live in one the above listed counties and were impacted by Hurricane Michael directly or indirectly, please contact Mary Gutierrez, Earth Ethics, at earthethicsaction@gmail.com or call 850.549.7472. To learn more about the overall project, please contact Salome Garcia, The CLEO Institute, at Salome@cleoinstitute.org or call 786.387.5111.

If you were impacted by Hurricane Michael directly or indirectly, please take the time to fill out our survey at http://ch.miami.edu/fl/Michael/

The Florida Climate Pledge

I acknowledge that the earth’s climate is changing, and that human activity is the primary cause. Our changing climate is a threat multiplier to our economy, our health, our security, and our overall well-being. I stand united with a coalition of concerned Floridians to protect our planet by supporting resolutions that address mitigation and adaptation strategies throughout our great state.

I pledge to support:

Initiatives that will move us off fossil fuels and achieve a just transition to 100% clean, renewable energy by 2050.

Climate resilience efforts including planning and zoning, transportation, housing, emergency preparedness, and sea level rise adaptation development.

The involvement of all communities in decision-making, especially our most underserved, as we build a resilient Florida for current and future generations.

Climate change mitigation strategies that incorporate the highest standards of environmental technology for promoting energy, water efficiency, and sustainability.

I pledge to protect Florida’s:

Coastlines from offshore drilling to safeguard our beautiful beaches that provide quality of life and sustain our tourism industry.

Oceans, which we rely on for our fishing industry.

Freshwater supplies which are already vulnerable to saltwater intrusion and would be even more threatened by fracking.

Clean air by supporting measures that regulate harmful air pollutants that impact our health.

The Everglades, because it sustains 8 million people and countless species that call this ecosystem home.

I join the call for collective adaptation and mitigation efforts through strong environmental policies and resilience measures that are based on climate science. Today, we look to the future and we embrace these challenges as an opportunity to preserve quality of life for all of us living and vacationing in our great sunshine state.

Let’s Protect Florida! Learn more at https://floridaclimatepledge.org/

U.N. Climate Change Conference in Paris

Earth Ethics, Inc. Executive Director traveled to Paris in 2015 to be part of the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Paris. She was able to meet with people from other States and Nations in discussions on how we can all become actively engaged in addressed climate change locally and globally. This work is ongoing.

Earth Action is working with numerous regional, national, and global organizations on the issue of climate change, including sea level rise, storm water, food security and numerous other climate change related issues. We are working for legislative change as well as the implementation of programs to address these issues.