Nature Is Our Best Ally in Fighting Climate Change

It is clear that climate change has arrived in Washington state. Much of what we love about this place that we call home is being affected. People in every corner of the state will tell you that our lands and waters are changing-and the science bears them out.

From severe floods and droughts to increased wildfires to rising public health risks, communities and nature are already feeling the impacts.

Snoqualmie valley flooding in January 2015. Photo © The Nature Conservancy.

What are the next steps?

In advance of the 2018 legislative session, state Department of Natural Resources Commissioner Hilary Franz made an announcement this morning at the Edgewater Hotel on the Seattle waterfront regarding carbon pollution and the need to invest in communitees on the frontlines of climate change.

Watch a replay below of the announcement from Facebook Live and read more about the announcement in DNR's news release.

The Nature Conservancy manages more than 100,000 acres of land in Washington, including more than 75,000 acres of forests. We have seen first hand the impact of climate change on our communities, on wildlife, and our state’s natural resources. This last summer, our own staff had to prepare for evacuation from the Jolly Mountain Fire. And we know that more is coming—the fire footprint will likely expand two- to four-fold by 2050.

It is unfortunately clear that climate change isn’t just a problem for future generations—it’s here now, demanding urgent action if we want to protect our towns and cities, our economy and the wild places and things that make our home state so special.

Sinlahekin Wildlife Area near Blue Lake during 2015 Okanogan Complex Fire. Photo © John Marshall.   

We applaud Commissioner Franz for taking the helm as a leader in a growing movement calling for solutions that work for Washington’s families and Washington’s businesses in the face of a changing climate.
 
Her message is one of hope. We have tremendous opportunity to prepare our communities, bolster our economies and bring together a broad array of interests to build a policy that works for Washington.

We hope that every Washingtonian joins us in working with Commissioner Franz, Gov. Jay Inslee, tribal leaders, the business community, labor and social-justice leaders to realize a bold vision that prepares Washington for the impacts of climate change that we are already experiencing, while taking immediate actions to reduce the carbon that is polluting our air. 

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