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PennFuture's Climate for Change :: Climate news from around the state, country and world

Monday, April 18, 2016

Three climate actions to take this Earth Day

To celebrate Earth Day, PennFuture brings you three actions that you can take to help mitigate climate change. 

(1) Join us in thanking President Obama for his climate leadership by signing onto the United States’ Paris climate agreement pledge as a citizen signer 

This Earth Day, April 22, 2016, world leaders will gather at the United Nations in New York City to formally sign onto the Paris climate agreement. 

The historic agreement, negotiated by nearly 200 nations in late 2015, addresses the growing threat of global climate change with a pledge to hold the line on global temperature rise to “well below 2º Celsius above pre-industrial levels” and an aim to achieve carbon neutrality in the latter half of the century. 

In fulfillment of goals under the Paris climate agreement, the Obama administration has already taken significant action to mitigate climate change in the United States. This includes the Clean Power Plan, the first-ever limit on carbon pollution from the power sector, as well as the soon-to-be finalized federal methane rule. These measures are important first steps to ensure the transition to clean energy and a habitable planet for future generations. 

Lend your support President Obama’s climate agenda and to the Paris climate agreement as a citizen signer.

(2) Fight climate change in your own backyard 

Photo credit: Ronald Gibson via NWF
Believe it or not, gardeners are on the front lines of climate change. From unpredictable growing seasons to the spread of invasive species and pests, gardeners nationwide are experiencing the negative effects of a warming planet. 

As the National Wildlife Federation’s (NWF) state affiliate, we’re happy to share the following smart and simple tips from its “Gardening for Wildlife” program to help you fight climate change and protect wildlife in your own backyard: 

  • Plant trees to absorb CO2 
  • Replace invasive plants with native species 
  • Reduce water consumption in your garden 
  • Reduce use of gasoline-powered tools 
  • Compost kitchen and garden waste 
  • Recognize your yard as a Certified Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation 
(3) Become a green power purchaser 

By purchasing green power, you can help expand the growth of solar and wind farms in Pennsylvania and beyond. Congress has extended Production Tax Credit (PTC) and Investment Tax Credit (ITC) to help tax credits solar and wind farms for the next five years. This will help give clean energy an extra push but we need smart consumers to show interest and keep these pollution-free energy sources growing. 

Photo Credit: Jeff Kubina via Flickr
Need more information on why you should make the switch to renewable energy? Or maybe just more information on how to make the switch? Check out the following short videos by PennFuture - Understanding Your Bill and Making the Switch

We hope you’ll take these actions on Earth Day to help mitigate climate change! In addition, feel free to join PennFuture for the many events that we are hosting or participating in throughout Earth Week! 

Katie Bartolotta is southeastern Pennsylvania outreach coordinator for PennFuture and is based in Philadelphia. She tweets @KatieBartolotta. 

Dom McGraw, PennFuture volunteer based in Philadelphia, contributed to this post.

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