If political will is the key to enacting effective climate policies, there’s a big obstacle that needs to be overcome: Many environmentalists are not showing up to vote. Joining our June call is Nathaniel Stinnett, founder and executive director of Environmental Voter Project. Their mission is to identify citizens concerned about environmental issues who are staying home on election day and turn them into active voters. Stinnett has held a variety of senior leadership and campaign manager positions on U.S. Senate, congressional, state, and mayoral campaigns. He was named one of America’s 50 environmental visionaries and is a frequent speaker on cutting-edge campaign techniques at top universities and campaign management trainings.
One of the more troubling aspects of climate change is its impact on oceans, which are a major source of food and also affect our weather patterns. Joining us for the May call to discuss that impact is Julia Roberson, VP of Communications for Ocean Conservancy. Her passion is communicating about the people and stories behind big environmental issues in a way that leads to action.
Roberson is a skilled writer and media relations professional deeply committed to ocean issues and to finding the intersections between serving nature and people’s needs in our rapidly growing world. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Communications, Public Relations, from Appalachian State University.
With surveys showing a persistent gap between what scientists say about climate change and what the public thinks scientists believe, it’s clear that Americans need more exposure to the views of scientific experts. As Amber Sullins says, the only scientist most people hear from is the person who delivers the weather forecast every evening. That’s why the Phoenix meteorologist talks about climate change during her reports. Sullins, who holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Atmospheric Science from the University of Arizona in Tucson, joins our call to discuss how meteorologists are helping the public to connect the dots between climate change and our changing weather.
Joan Blades and her husband Wes Boyd co-founded the political action group MoveOn.org in 1997. In 2006, she co-founded MomsRising.org, dedicated to “bringing millions of people, who all share a common concern about the need to build a more family-friendly America, together as a non-partisan force.” Her latest project, Living Room Conversations, seeks to bridge the political divide in America by encouraging people with differing views to come together for respectful discussions. These conversations increase understanding, reveal common ground, and sometimes even allow us to discuss possible solutions.
Our February guest was Celia Paris, Assistant Professor in Political Science at Loyola University. She is currently working on a book manuscript that explores whether Madisonian ideals for deliberative and collaborative political decision-making have lost their appeal. Titled Madison’s ABCs: Why the Public Still Values Accomplishment, Bipartisanship, and Civility in Congress, her book argues that the desire for a more Madisonian approach to politics remains alive and well in the American public and that citizens value accomplishment, bipartisanship, and civility.
How do we communicate effectively with policy makers about climate change? For answers on our January call, we turn to Sabine Marx with the Center for Research on Environmental Decisions (CRED). She’s the Director of Research at the National Center for Disaster Preparedness (NCDP) at the Earth Institute, Columbia University and the co-author of “The Psychology of Climate Change Communication.” Dr. Marx joined CRED in 2005 after two years of post-doctoral work at the International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI) at Columbia’s Earth Institute. She received her Ph.D. in medical history from Carnegie Mellon University and holds a Masters degree in Sociology and Pedagogy, with a minor in Psychology and Art Therapy from the University of Cologne, Germany.
José Aguto is Associate Director of Catholic Climate Covenant, where he raises up the call to care for creation and care for the poor. Prior to joining Catholic Climate Covenant, he was Legislative Secretary for Sustainable Energy and Environment at the Friends Committee on National Legislation. Aguto was one of CCL’s earliest allies on Capitol Hill and worked with CCL on the introduction of the Republican Climate Resolution, which eventually led to the formation of the bipartisan House Climate Solutions Caucus. Aguto has also worked for the National Congress of American Indians in the service of tribal governments seeking to address climate change.
Our Veterans Day speaker for 2017 was retired Maj. Gen. Rick Devereaux, who served 34 years in the U.S. Air Force before retiring in 2012. His last assignment was Director of Operational Planning, Policy, and Strategy in Washington, D.C. He is currently Executive Vice President for Government Affairs at Texzon Technologies, a pioneer in the field of electromagnetic wave propagation, power storage, and electricity distribution.
Gen. Devereaux is also a volunteer with the Asheville chapter of Citizens Climate Lobby where he educates the public about the national security risks of climate change.
As CCL looks to build relationships across race and culture, our October guest is Barbara Love, Professor Emeritus of Social Justice Education at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. She taught graduate classes on foundations of social justice education, design development and facilitation skills, and on self-awareness for social justice educators and liberation workers.
She is recognized globally for her work on organizational and societal transformation and on issues of diversity, inclusion, and liberation. She directs the Black Liberation and Community Development Project of the International ReEvaluation Counseling Communities. Her publications appear in a variety of journals and anthologies and focus on personal, organizational, and societal transformation and strategies for liberation.
Dr. Shi-Ling Hsu is the D’Alemberte Professor of Law and Associate Dean for Environmental Programs at the Florida State University College of Law. He is the author of The Case for a Carbon Tax: Getting Past our Hang-ups to Effective Climate Policy, which remains the most comprehensive general treatment and argument for carbon taxation. He teaches and writes in the areas of environmental and natural resource law, climate change, law and economics, and property.
Professor Hsu holds an M.S. in ecology and a Ph.D. in agricultural and resource economics, and was an EPA Star Fellow from 1996-98. A member of CCL’s advisory board, Dr. Hsu has completed 22 marathons, including 6 Boston Marathons.