Climate Literacy

November 30, 2015
By: J Drake Hamilton (Fresh Energy)

People's Climate March in Saranac Lake

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAs we gather in the chilly Adirondack air, we notice a change in our November that unfortunately is becoming more common with each passing year….there’s no snow on the ground.  Even in the 20 plus years that I have lived here, I know that this is not normal for the “heart” of the Adirondacks. So we gather, to express our wishes to “keep the carbon in the soil.” As the leader of North Country read to us the goals of COP21, we huddled and cheered at the hopeful tenor of the goals. That’s what we are all feeling, leading up to these historic negotiations; hope.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThen, one of the students that I have been traveling with this fall stood up and gave us her message of hope, speaking of how her generation will be the “first to feel the effects of climate change and the last to be able to do something about it.”  She said that she was “… here representing a number of things: my own environmental club at Keene (a neighboring village), the Adirondack Youth Climate Summit, and most importantly my generation.”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThese words spoken by a high school senior are the most inspiring to me. I’m inspired to hear her dedication to the planet and her determination to not give up, not be complacent, and work to have her voice heard. This is why I am going to Paris. To bear witness for the generation with the skills and creativity to develop solutions for our planet.