Climate Generation Gist

August 15, 2016
By: Climate Generation

Bearing witness

Letter from the Executive Director

Nicole GlacierThis month I’ve been drawn to headlines of iconic places that I’ve visited, which are now changing drastically due to human-induced climate change. In 2003, I spent the summer in Russian Siberia, specifically the Lake Baikal region, doing graduate environmental work. Reading reports of Siberia’s thawing permafrost felt like the moment Will Steger references – his call to action – when he read of Antarctica’s Larsen Ice shelf disintegrating; to realize the cycle of impacts are happening so much earlier than scientists have predicted is disconcerting.

As three of our own staff traveled to Glacier National Park with Climate Ride this summer to bear witness to the impacts of climate change in this special National Park, I was reminded of my own backpacking trip there just 6 years ago, and how much has changed, even in that time period, as evidenced by this photographer’s efforts. The recent State of the Climate report published in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, featuring more than 450 scientists from 62 countries and drawing on tens of thousands of measurements of Earth’s climate, confirms the increased pace of change.

Their stories of the people they met on their trips, who each raised over $2800 to support climate change efforts and organizations – including Climate Generation – are inspiring, and a fierce reminder of the people who are dedicating themselves to this very issue. These people are living examples of the solutions we seek to advance to preserve our environment, the one home we have.

I am proud of our work each and every day. I am proud of our supporters who make our work even possible. And I am even prouder of the people that I work side by side with – my colleagues – who are digging into this important work physically, emotionally and intellectually, everyday. Together with our Board, we’ve been engaging in strategic planning and asking hard and difficult questions about where we want to be 3-5 years from now. We’re charting an exciting course for the upcoming school year for our students and teachers, looking forward to our 10-year anniversary celebration on December 1st, upcoming policy opportunities in 2017, and setting the stage for work that will expand and deepen our impact in the years ahead.

Our fiscal year comes to a close on August 31. Please consider powering our work with a meaningful contribution, which will be matched by a generous donor! You can donate online at, or by calling our office at 612-278-7147.

Nicole Rom, Executive Director


Climate Generation joins #teach4climate campaign

teach4climateAs teachers are headed back to school, we want to remind you of our great climate change education resources. This school year, Climate Generation is proud to be joining partners from last year’s #youth4climate coalition to launch #teach4climate, a coordinated campaign to support educators who are pursuing climate change education efforts in their educational settings. Stay tuned for engagement opportunities in the coming weeks, share the ways you #teach4climate with us on social media, and check out the coalition’s blog post announcing the launch here.

Climate conversations with Duluth area legislators

On August 3, over a small informal breakfast at Sara’s Table in Duluth, Climate Generation brought together constituents with their local legislators and candidates to share stories of climate change and to cultivate bipartisan support for the issue.  In the words of one legislator, “Facts and statistics are powerful, but some people choose to dispute them. Stories may be a vehicle that help to illuminate those facts, and meld them into a broader perspective.” For a glimpse of the stories shared, check out Ann’s Climate Story.

Thank You, Allie!

We want to say a huge thank you to our Summer Intern, Allie Belyaev, who was instrumental in the success of our Summer Institute for Climate Change Education. Her attention to detail, efficiency, and creativity proved to be invaluable in making it such a rich conference. We will miss her capable and confident self in the office, but wish her well in her senior year at Macalester College!

Emerging Leaders

YEA! MN gears up for the new school year

retreatgameOver the summer, the YEA! MN program has gone through a process of reflection and feedback, with the support of many partners and staff. We’re excited to dig deeper with young people, learn together about the issue of climate change and equip them with the skills to navigate the long-haul solutions we need for real change. We know climate change is sparking a transition, and as young people who have a fundamental stake in our future, we want to ensure the transition is just and equitable for all. Stay tuned for ways to get involved with YEA! MN during the upcoming school year. Please contact YEA! MN Coordinator Nicole Ektnitphong at with questions around engagement and involvement opportunities.

High school students at Midwest Power Shift 2016!

High school students have a unique role to play ensuring a just transition to a healthy and resilient climate future. We know that their ability to speak powerfully from their experience – and garner the attention of the families and communities in which they are deeply embedded – can lead to significant change on a variety of fronts. For that reason, we were proud to partner with Midwest Power Shift 2016 to support a weekend of training, action and community-building for youth climate activists in Detroit. This past weekend, August 13-14, Power Shift created a space specifically for high school and college students to learn, grow and lead. Read all about it on their recap page.


Adventure advocacy as a powerful platform for action

Earlier this month, two of our staff returned from Climate Ride’s Climate Hike in Glacier National Park, where they hiked 43 miles through the park and led the group in a climate storytelling workshop. Read Megan and Katie’s reflections on the trip, and consider signing up for a Climate Ride event this year or next! By participating in Climate Ride, you’re taking meaningful actions on behalf of our planet, including raising money for environmental nonprofits, raising awareness of the issue among your supporters, and connecting with like-minded advocates for climate solutions. Their website has the full run-down of events, and be sure to choose Climate Generation as one of your beneficiaries!

Power the change – support our work before August 31!

Our fiscal year comes to a close on August 31. Please consider powering our work for the year ahead with a meaningful contribution, which will be matched by a generous donor! You can donate online at, or by calling our office at 612-278-7147.

Thank you to our 10-Year Celebration Host Committee and sponsors!

The planning process for our 10-Year celebration event continues, and we want to say a huge thanks to our 10-year host committee and sponsors that are supporting our event. Visit our website if you’re interested in being a sponsor or purchasing a table! Stay tuned for exciting details in September when we will announce our MC and keynote speaker and will be opening individual ticket sales!

Corporate Sponsors: Xcel Energy, Aveda, Askov Finlayson, Best Buy, Great River Energy, Ever-Green Energy, Andersen Corporation, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota, Elness Swenson Graham Architects, Inc., Software for Good

VIP Table Sponsor: Bridget and Ross Levin, Jud Dayton, Darby Ringer

Host Committee:  Gordon and Josephine Bailey and Joe and Michael Bailey; Chuck Bennett; Heidi Bing; David A. Brown Jr; R. Michael and Sharon Conley; Leigh and Peter Currie; Lynn Gordon, French Meadow Bakery & Cafe and Bluestem Bar; Will and Claudia Kaul; Joann and Dan Knuth; Kate and Sam Knuth, Kerry Walsh and Tom Meyer, Jonathan O’Conner and Eric Schlotterbeck; Kim Knutson, Julie Ristau & friends; Ron and Kimberly Kroese; Jim and Susan Lenfestey; Stuart and Kate Nielsen; Win and Binky Rockwell, Dodd and Ann Cosgrove, Kathleen and David Miller, Becky Rom and Reid Carron;  Raj Rajan; Don Shelby; Cathryn Kennedy Consulting, Ltd; Tim and Denise Seck; Fourth Sector Consulting; Jessica Hellmann and Institute on the Environment

In the News

Reader’s View: Extreme weather events raise climate concerns

Duluth News TribuneIn this Letter to the Editor, Summer Institute attendee Greyson Morrow shares his concern about extreme weather events he’s witnessed, and encourages people to take action by working with nonprofits such as Climate Generation that are advancing solutions.

What climate change means for the Boundary Waters region

Wilderness-News-Summer-2016After featuring our approach to communicating about climate change in their spring issue, Wilderness News continued their coverage of climate change impacts in Minnesota this summer, with a feature story on changes affecting the Boundary Waters.

Photo of the Month

Megan and Katie en route to Grinnell Glacier, one of the 25 remaining glaciers in Glacier National Park. Lower Grinnell Lake, in the background, was formed by the glacier’s melting ice.