Lew Blaustien, editor of Green Sports Blog, is very concerned about climate change. A sports nut since childhood, Lew began a career in sportscasting, and eventually settled into the marketing side of professional sports. There was nothing in his background to suggest he would turn into a passionate climate advocate. The 911 attacks on New York City in 2001 though changed everything for him. You will hear about how that traumatic event set him on a new career path.
Lew puts the challenges we face into perspective. He says, “Mike Trout of the Anaheim Angels—best player in baseball—recently signed a 400 plus million dollar twelve year contract extension. Twelve years is also what the IPCC said is the time frame that humanity has to reduce our carbon footprint by 45%—basically Mike Trout’s contract.” Lew believes sports fans can become instrumental in taking on climate change. “We need to get the masses of people who follow sports...to engage on positive climate action.”
In this lively interview you will hear Lew brimming with enthusiasm as he reveals a growing trend in the professional sports world. More and more athletes, teams, and leagues are working hard to address environmental concerns. You will also hear from professional skier, Angel Collinson. Through Protect Our Winters she has been speaking to members of congress. In speaking with lawmakers and how many are concerned about climate change, she has become more determined than ever to speak out about the issue. Inspired by athletes like Angel Collinson and Milwaukee Brewers pitcher, Brent Suter, who we featured on Episode 37, Lew and other in the green sports movement are urging teams and players to take the next step—speak directly about climate change and endorse the policies that will address our dangerous pollution problems.
The Art House
Poet liz gonzález joins us in the Art House. Her background is important to her work. She describes herself as “a fourth generation Southern Californian on my mother’s side and the daughter of a Mexican immigrant father who died when I was three.” A teacher of creative writing through the UCLA Extension Writers Program, liz writes poetry and creative non-fiction. Through her writing liz captures the beauty and the challenges of a rapidly changing landscape. For the Art House she reads from her book, Dancing in the Santa Ana Winds: Poems y Cuentos New and Selected. She explains how the power of the Santa Ana winds serves as a metaphor for the early years of liz’ marriage. She also reads a poem from the anthology, Fire and Rain: Ecopoetry of California.
Though she is very passionate about the suffering that comes from pollution and climate change, liz reveals how difficult it is for her to write about social justice issues. “It has to just happen naturally. I can’t sit down and decide I want to write it. It always ends up sounding preachy, and there are people who do it so much better.” Experience the natural beauty liz recreates in her writing and learn about some of the challenges artists like liz face in a time of climate change.
For last month’s puzzler we asked listeners to share with us the colors and sounds they associate with climate change.
New Puzzler Question
On Facebook you reconnected with a childhood friend, Lydia. She has become worried about climate change and is wondering about what she can do right now to prepare for the effects of climate change. While she admires your work in mitigating climate change, she feels a growing interest in adaptation. Lydia asks you, “What are ways I can help my community to get ready for climate change?”
This is a big question and hopefully the beginning of a larger discussion about climate adaptation. What are some ideas you have for Lydia? Where might she start in adapting to climate change?
You’re welcome to answer either or both. Send Peterson your answers by July 15, 2019, along with your name, contact info, and where you are from. You can email your answers to radio @ citizensclimate.org or leave a voicemail of 3 minutes or less at 518.595.9414 (+1 if calling from outside the USA).
- Sports for Climate Action Framework
- The Green Sports Alliance
- Thomas L Friedman: The Power of Green
- Ep 18 Race Car Driver and Climate Advocate, Aaron Telitz
- George Marshall: Don’t Even Think about It: Why are Brains are Wired to Ignore Climate Change
- LA Times: The Santa Ana Winds and the Literature of Los Angeles
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