Let’s declare local climate emergency


USA Today on Jan. 15, 2020, quoted atmospheric scientist Katharine Hayhoe’s empathic call to action, “The last decade was the warmest on record. We know that the planet is warming faster than any time in human history. Climate change is a human issue that matters to all of us living on this planet today, whether we know it or not.”

The same day, the Wilmington News Journal quoted Wilmington College scientist emeritus Douglas Woodmansee’s empathic call to action,“We currently face a … threat. Most places are expected to get warmer and stormier. We must take the science seriously, cooperate with other nations and with each other, and cast votes for what is best for all of us …”

On the same day, I made a presentation to the Clinton County Commissioners created by Rotary International for individual Rotarians to advance Positive Peace. I thanked them for partnering with the United Nations World Health Organization and AARP, UN Global Compact participant, to work on AARP’s Age Friendly Clinton County, begun in 2018. I invited them to consider: Declare a climate emergency and add it to Age Friendly Clinton County; and/or join at no financial cost the largest business initiative in the world for climate survival, the UN Global Compact, and ask the Port Authority to oversee it.

This was the fifth time in five years that I have invited the commissioners to virtually the same partnership. They always decline. Their unwillingness to govern with empathy for and responsibility to anyone other than the residents of Clinton County does nothing to protect and empower those same residents to survive our climate crisis.

Local caring citizens should encourage them to act. Also, consider joining us at a Fridays for Future event near you. Here’s the link — http://bit.ly/2R1EVYa .

Charles Watts

Wilmington