Friday, January 12, 2007

Sarasota Citizens Concerned with Global Warming

A message from the organizers of a grass roots effort to raise awareness of the global warming issue and show ways people can act:

We are starting a group in Sarasota to promote climate protection. Please join us. Slowing global warming is not something we can leave to others, and we are running out of time.

Our group is called SNCA for Sarasota Network for Climate Action . (Say "Snikka.") Don't worry. No regular meetings. No dues. And this is probably the longest email we will ever send you. If you want to participate and make a difference, all you need to do is give us your email address. We will "meet" and make decisions and take action via e-mail and website. We hope to create a good website (and we do need volunteer/s to help on that) that will explain the issue and our actions. We might ask you to come out to a city or county commission meeting to show that there is groundswell of grassroots concern whenever we try to persuade our officials to take action.

To join just send an email to with "Subscribe to SNCA" in the subject line.

Here is our initial mission statement, to be refined as we go along.

The Sarasota Network for Climate Action (SNCA) is a group of concerned citizens who recognize that science has established that human activities, particularly human use of fossil fuels for energy, are causing carbon dioxide and other gases to accumulate in the atmosphere where they are forming an ever-thicker blanket, which is making the earth grow warmer.

We call on our local governments (county and cities):

• to acknowledge the threat of climate change and pledge to take prompt action to reduce the causes of climate change

• to sign the US Mayors Climate Protection Agreement, which urges federal and state governments to enact policies and programs to meet or beat the Kyoto Protocol target of reducing global warming pollution levels to 7% below 1990 levels by 2012, and pledges to strive to meet or exceed Kyoto Protocol targets for reducing global warming pollution by taking actions in our own operations and communities

• to join ICLEI (International Council for Local Environmental Initiates), an association of local governments that have made a commitment to sustainable development, and which provides consulting, training, and evaluation tools for setting and achieving energy efficiency objectives

• to sign (as the county has) the 2030 challenge, a program initiated by the American Institute of Architects, which calls for increasing the fossil-fuel reduction standard for all new buildings to carbon neutral by 2030

• to establish (as the county has) an environmental department staffed by at least one environmental specialist, and set up a citizens' board to advise and recommend regarding environmental policies.

We are hoping to gather representatives from a broad base of groups and interests around town, including: architecture, media, business, arts, education, sciences, neighborhoods, faith communities, environmental organizations, etc. We are asking you to represent X. That doesn't mean you will act officially for any group you belong to. It just means that when you meet other people from your interest group, (or anyone, for that matter) we want you to promote the issue of energy efficiency and climate action.

If you can get more people to join our SNCA email community, all the better. We need to show that there is growing concern and an increasing number of people who want local action to stop global warming.

We don't have long to act. Most scientists predict irreversible damage if we do not take strong global action within the next ten years. The most dire effects will not occur in our lifetime, but we are responsible now for future generations.

You can look at these websites (among many others) to understand more about global warming and what we might do:

The last link above will take you to Big Bend Climate Action Team. This Tallahassee group's heroic efforts inspire us to help lead the Sunshine State away from energy excesses toward sustainability.

Will you join us? All we need is your email commitment. We will not give your email address to any other person or group. Our emails will be very short (unlike this first one!) and will usually lead you to links if you want to know more.

June Cussen
Lea Hall

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