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Lobster Shack
Kathryn Donohew/Getty Images

Therapists in Maine are treating more people for climate anxiety

Perhaps you can relate to this article about how therapists in Maine are treating more people for climate anxiety.

‘What do you call a lobsterman when there are no more lobsters?’

The climate crisis is impacting all aspects of people’s lives, from rising temperatures outsides, to food supply, to even the money in people’s wallets. And it’s particularly worrying Maine residents who rely on consistent climates for a living — and their identity.

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Glasgow
COP26

Uniting the world to tackle climate change

Have you been following some of the recent research around climate change? With the international climate talks getting considerable press, there's been more interest in sharing climate-related impacts, as well as solutions.

The UK hosted the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow on 31 October – 12 November 2021. The COP26 summit brought parties together to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

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Selfie
Pixabay

Dramatic increase in public beliefs and worries about climate change

If you are curious about how your region stacks up, by county, on the scale of climate concern, you can check out the Climate Opinion Maps by the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication.

“Americans’ belief that global warming is happening has increased six percentage points since March. Americans who think that global warming is happening now outnumber those who think it is not happening by more than 6 to 1.”

Check out the maps and data. It might be something you could share with others.

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Solar And Ag
Werner Slocum, NREL

The future of agriculture combined with renewable energy finds success at Jack’s Solar Garden

Across the world, and here in the U.S., those who care about farm and ranch viability, healthy soils, and water retention are realizing that elevated solar, and solar that works well with large animals and crops, is going to be an important piece in the conservation puzzle.

Jack’s Solar Garden is the largest commercially active agrivoltaics system researching crop and vegetation growth under photovoltaic solar panels in the United States. The garden generates enough power for more than 300 homes from 3,276 solar panels (6 ft and 8 ft) that create a 1.2-MW community solar garden.

Audubon Rockies, a regional office of the bird protection society, established their largest Habitat Hero pollinator habitat in Colorado around the solar array, while a local nonprofit farming organization, Sprout City Farms, trains young farmers to cultivate crops under the solar panels…

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Many Solar Panels
Judy Anderson

Best practices in local review of community solar in rural areas

The Columbia Land Conservancy is hosting a series of webinars about community solar. Your area land trust could do this too. You can listen to the first webinar and download the slides, all of which are very informative.

Community solar projects have numerous novel features, compared to other types of development. During this session, Adriana Beltrani, an Environmental Planner with the firm Nelson, Pope, Voorhis will present what to look for in a complete site plan application package and explore ways for local planning boards to ensure that information about important resources and other local priorities are considered during the site design and review.

The session seeks to provide attendees with the tools to appropriately investigate, avoid, and mitigate potential impacts from solar projects…

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Fall Pond
Steve Neel

How the Community Forest Program works

Community forests can be part of the climate solution — and help increase public access to lands, close to home.

“The Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program (Community Forest Program) of the Forest Service offers a unique opportunity for communities to acquire and conserve forests that provide public access and recreational opportunities, protect vital water supplies and wildlife habitat, serve as demonstration sites for private forest landowners, and provide economic benefits from timber and non-timber products…”

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Forest
Flickr

Community Forests: A path to prosperity and connection

Community forests can be part of the climate solution — and help increase public access to lands, close to home.

“Community forests are protected forestlands that contribute to healthy, flourishing communities. Importantly, they offer residents and community members a direct say in how these lands are stewarded over time…”

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Solar Install
Taos Land Trust

Producing energy while protecting the land

Some of the most innovative land trusts are small and nimble. In 2017, Taos Land Trust was already focused on climate change and modeling how to make a difference. Today, other land trusts are realizing that compatible solar is going to need to be at the core of their conservation efforts — just like invasive species management.

“Part of our work as a community land trust is to help reframe the energy debate and build community energy resiliency.

…[W]e flipped the switch on our first solar energy array and as of today more than 50% of the energy we use to run Taos Land Trust is generated by our new solar panels. The 2kW photovoltaic array sitting on our downtown Taos property was installed through a generous grant from the PPC Solar Photovoltaic Donation Program. This is a huge move for us…”

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Long Haired Girls
Judy Anderson

Reflections for land trusts, October 2021

Last week, the national Land Trust Alliance hosted its land trust conference. There were over 60 presentations, including many on climate change and communications.

The timing couldn’t have been better. As climate change continues to accelerate, land conservationists and those who care about their communities are stepping forward to help people connect the dots on how to support meaningful change.

We recognize that climate change is quickly pushing animals and plants past their ability to survive, and natural climate solutions are, at best, predicted to be approximately 30% of the solution.

As natural systems become more stressed by climate change and the resulting disasters and impacts, natural climate solutions become more vulnerable.

Nature needs renewables — and our collective work to reduce energy consumption — to flourish.

To help with that, I thought you might appreciate this very thoughtful video about the role of “agrivoltaics” in water conservation, farm viability, and economic impact. It’s titled: “Agrivoltaics. An economic lifeline for American farmers?

For too long, we’ve been saying that solar should avoid farmland, based upon soil type (meaning, avoiding lands of “prime” or “statewide” importance, etc.). Yet given that we know that climate change is stressing soils, and making farming and ranching more difficult, the question could better be framed: “How can solar (and wind) help farm and ranch viability, water retention, and soil health?”

Installing millions of acres of solar that are mowed like lawns, to me, is a gigantic waste. Instead, we could promote elevated solar that allows for a diversity of farming and ranching underneath and between the panels.

I look forward to hearing what you think of the agrivoltaics video, and what you think of the land trusts, featured below, who are helping to address climate change.

Best,

Judy

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dad-and-son
Conservation Hawks

Organization to know: Conservation Hawks

When we think about who is taking action to slow down climate change, we often don't consider those who hunt and fish. That's why I want to make sure you know about Conservation Hawks. As a national group, they are working to inspire climate action while there's still time to save the plants and animals they love.

We are a group of passionate hunters & anglers devoted to protecting our sporting heritage and passing on a healthy natural world to our kids and grandkids. Our motto says it all:  Hunters & Anglers Defending Our Future.

What makes us different? At Conservation Hawks, our job is to identify and address the single biggest threat to our hunting & fishing. That’s why we focus all our time & energy on the most important issue for sportsmen:  Climate Change.

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