- In a recent report, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warned that we have only twelve years to make unprecedented reductions in carbon emissions in order to avoid significant impacts from global climate change. While politically challenging, the IPCC report also indicates that this level of change is both feasible and affordable. Action is required at all sectors and all levels—individual efforts like driving less and carpooling or biking more, increased usage of energy efficient appliances and lighting, all the way up to systemic changes in our energy production across the world.
- According to NOAA, 2016 was the hottest year on the historical record and the third consecutive record-breaking year. The 10 hottest years ever recorded have all happened since 1998.
- Per NASA, global concentrations of Carbon Dioxide this year reached as high as 410.79 parts per million – the highest in 650,000 years. Global sea level rose about 17 centimeters (6.7 inches) in the last century. The rate of sea level rise in the last decade, however, is nearly double that of the last century.
- On June 1, 2017 President Trump announced his intent to withdraw from the Paris Climate Accords, the voluntary international agreement that directs each country to set targets for reduction of climate-changing greenhouse gas emissions, with a goal of avoiding an average increase in global temperatures of 2 degrees Celsius. On October 9, 2017, the Trump Administration announced a similar plan to terminate the National Clean Power Plan. These actions demonstrate a significant change in direction for the world and our nation; all progress for the United States in addressing climate change will need to be made on the local or state level for the foreseeable future.
- Climate change is here and we are already starting to see the impacts. But it’s not too late to make a difference–and biggest potential for progress is on the local level.
The Ecology Action Center, as the environmental agency for Bloomington-Normal and McLean County, is currently conducting its second inventory of greenhouse gas emissions for our community. The first GHG inventory was conducted in 2014 using 2008 energy use data to create an emissions baseline. This year’s inventory is broader in scope, also looking at other air quality emissions such as ozone, which are regulated under the National Ambient Air Quality Standards, and can be dangerous to public health. This time around, following the quantification of current emissions levels, the EAC will launch a collaborative strategic planning process to establish goals for emissions reductions and develop strategies for meeting these goals.
This program has limited financial support from the City of Bloomington and Town of Normal; the Ecology Action Center needs your help to make it successful. Accordingly, the EAC has launched a new public-private partnership; donations to the new BN Clean Air Fund will support our efforts to improve and maintain air quality in Bloomington-Normal. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, contributions to the EAC are deductible to the extent allowable by law. Donate now to help fight climate change and protect air quality in our community.
Contributions may be made using the form below or by sending a check made out to the Ecology Action Center, 202 W College Ave, Normal, IL 61761. Please indicate “BN Clean Air” on the memo line of your check.