red tulips | copyright Jill J. Jensen

 

 

Natural Resources Defense Council

preserving the life and health of the planet

 

If you've lived through the now-annual 100-year floods and droughts, blizzard-blinded winters, tornado-blasted springs, scorching summer of 2006 and all the summers since — with days upon days of 100-degree-plus temperatures and humidity levels constantly slouching toward saturation — it's hard to deny the case for climate change. Since the turn of the new millennium, every year has become the "hottest on record," with no end it sight.

But many years ago, rather than taking the ostrich approach and ignoring the signs, or running amok like Henny Penny dodging chunks of sky, a group of concerned citizens created the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). In its 35-year history, the organization has become a well-respected advocate for humanity and the environment.

NRDC's website offers a wealth of information about planetary issues that affect us all — from clean air, clean energy, and clean water to 'green' living in cities and both U.S. and international law and policy. Parks, forests, wildlife, and wild lands are also a focus, but so is sustainable human habitat. The impact of hurricanes Katrina and Rita on the U.S. Gulf Coast, as well as major earthquakes and tsusnamis in Chile, Indonesia, and Japan remind us of the impact of climate events on the entire global economy and our interconnections and interdependence with every other earthly species.

As NRDC's director says,

"As an organization that champions a sustainable future for our earth and our children, NRDC is firmly in the camp of positive action. We know that a future based on efficiency, renewable energy, advanced coal, and clean cars will curb global warming. ...Working with farmers, security hawks, religious leaders, financial institutions, and coal industry representatives, we generated major momentum for putting these solutions in place. From the Senate to the utility sector, leaders now realize that binding limits on global warming pollution are inevitable.

"The fight to address global warming is not over; it will continue for years to come. What inspires us along the way is the belief — based on our 35-year track record — that NRDC can achieve big solutions to big problems. From removing lead in gasoline to ending nuclear testing to protecting the last unspoiled gray whale nursery, NRDC has successfully championed the values of safety, health, wilderness, and biodiversity in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds."

You don't need to consider yourself an "environmental activist" to want to learn more. If you enjoy visiting our state or national parks and wildlife refuges or if you want to make sure you and your grandchildren's children have clean air to breathe and clean water to drink, the NRDC website offers educational resources and a community of like-minded souls who just want to keep our big blue ball habitable.

 

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