Film shows local and state governments working for climate change

(The latest in a series of posts relating to the environment, Bethlehem’s Climate Action Plan, Bethlehem’s Environmental Advisory Council)

Kathy Fox is a member of the Bethlehem Environmental Advisory Council, a co-chair of the Northampton County Council of Democratic Women’s Environmental Committee, and a member of the Board of Directors of the Bethlehem Food Co-op.  Kathy involves herself in positive organizations and activities that foster community, environmental awareness, education, and good health. 


I want to thank the Lehigh University Environmental Studies department for hosting a screening of “Paris to Pittsburgh” [watch trailer] and, specifically, Breena Holland for organizing the event.  In attendance were a good mix of students, professors, and residents of Bethlehem.  The basis of the film was to show that despite the federal government’s refusal to do anything about the dire issue of climate change, many local and state governments are working for change.  The film focused on the fact that climate change is NOT a partisan issue.  It profiled Miami, Florida, Iowa farmers and towns, California, Puerto Rico, and Pittsburgh, highlighting the fact that it does not matter where you live and/or what your politics are, you will be adversely affected by climate change, and it is our responsibility to do something to reverse or at least hold the course of temperature rise as much as possible.

“A searing look at the effects of climate change by regular people who are dealing with its effects in their local towns. ” (

The narrator talked about the need to scale-up from the bottom to reduce fossil fuel use by 80% by 2030 and 100% by the end of the century and showcased solutions that were currently being implemented.  There were numerous examples of renewable energy as a local economy boaster/job creator, and the film talked about the true price of greenhouse gas emissions.  It is will cost less to do more to remediate climate change than it will cost to repair all the damage caused by it.  A Marshall Plan for climate was suggested.  Ask your politicians how they plan to tackle climate change.  On that note, Bethlehem City Council Candidate, Grace Crampsie Smith, was in attendance, and asked good questions about the solutions cities should use to do their part.

“We the people need to take action. Our lives are at stake here.” (from the film)

The panel for discussion included Professors Rudy Shankar, Dork Sahagian, and David Casagrande; Lehigh University graduate student and member of the Bethlehem Environmental Advisory Council’s Waste Reduction Task Force, Jackie Cook; and Martha Christine, co-chair of Citizens Climate Lobby LV Chapter and member of Bethlehem Backyards for Wildlife.  Professor Sahagian also stressed the need for a united effort – where you and I take responsibility for reducing our energy consumption.  Start local, speak up, and take action.


It’s Thursday, March 28, do you know where your local Climate Action Plan is?

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