Takin' It to the Streets for Climate Change

Tuesday, September 23, 2014
By: Lisa M. Genier

Uploaded Image: /vs-uploads/Climate change blog/Climate change march2.jpgIn New York City on Sunday, over 300,000 people marched in the “Peoples Climate March” with a message to world leaders to act on climate change. Organized by a dozen environmental, labor and social justice groups, the march included celebrities and high-profile politicians such as United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon, former U.S. vice president Al Gore, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, and actors Mark Ruffalo and Leonardo DiCaprio.

The message of the march was to the more than 120 world leaders, including President Obama, who are expected to attend the one-day summit on Tuesday at the United Nations to discuss the challenge of a changing climate.

It’s clear from the large turnout for this march that people are concerned about climate change and want something done about it…now

But what is climate change? The use of fossil fuels cause carbon to be emitted into the atmosphere, which is causing a gradual warming of the planet and dramatic changes to weather patterns around the world.

In fact, last week, meteorologists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced that this summer— the months of June, July and August — was the hottest on record for the globe, and that 2014 was on track to break the record for the hottest year, set in 2010. This trend, not any one data point, is the concern.

What does climate change mean for the Adirondack Park?  Warming temperatures will change the Park's ecosystem, impacting some native species and helping more invasive species survive. A rise of 10 degrees in temperature would put the Park in the same climate zone as the mountains of North Carolina and Georgia.

Water quality and quantity, as well as industries including tourism and agriculture will be degraded and altered, hurting Adirondack communities. Winters in the Adirondacks will be shorter and snowfall amounts will lessen.  In fact, if significaUploaded Image: /vs-uploads/Climate change blog/Climate change march.jpgnt steps are not taken, and soon, to cut carbon emissions the Adirondacks could lose much of their ice and snow by the end of the century.

In addition, the Adirondack Park will see more weather events like Tropical Storm Irene. During Irene, up to 10 inches of rain fell in the High Peaks region and sent boulders, trees and torrents of water down mountainsides, destroying roads and houses. Scientists say that intense rainfalls are a hallmark of climate change.

Leaders from around the globe need to listen to the people marching in the streets and do something to stop climate change now. Future generations are depending on it.


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Uploaded Image: /vs-uploads/lisa-genier.jpgLisa M. Genier joined the Council in 1992 working as its Legislative Associate in the Albany office. During her tenure, she played a role in the creation of the Environmental Protection Fund, which has been used to fund land purchases and environmental programs in the Adirondack Park and around the state. She was also a member of the negotiating teams that worked on re-licensing agreements for several hydroelectric facilities in the Park, which preserved thousands of acres of land, expanded recreational opportunities, and protected other natural resources. Lisa now works part-time as Program Analyst writing action alerts, interacting with members, managing the Council’s website, and serving in a consultative role on legislative and other issues.

Lisa is a member of the Department of Environmental Conservation’s Accessibility Advisory Committee that works to make the Forest Preserve and other DEC facilities around the state more accessible for people with disabilities while protecting the natural resources. 

Lisa grew up in Mineville (Town of Moriah) in the Adirondacks. She attended the State University of New York at Oneonta and graduated in 1989 summa cum laude with degrees in Political Science and Business Economics. Lisa currently lives in Schenectady with her partner, Val and their four cats and dog.

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