Disposable City: Miami’s Future on the Shores of Climate Catastrophe

By Mario Alejandro Ariza   “When the waters come, please know you had kin who fought like hell to keep them from your door.”   The book’s “Dedication” reveals the author’s passion for fighting against climate change and why sea level rise will likely put Miami underwater by the end of this century.    Journalist and author, Mario Alejandro Ariza, hosted the Environmental Issues Group Zoom book discussion on September 5, and highlighted concerns not commonly associated with climate change, such as health issues, financial impact, and Miami’s social inequality – the gap between rich and poor.    Mario was prompted to write Disposable City when he was teaching English in the Hunan Province of China during the summer of 2015.  When he stepped outside, the smog was so thick that he couldn’t see the other side of the street. The smog lasted for days and he used an N-95 mask

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Join Us for EIG Author Presentation

Join Us for EIG Author Presentation

                          The Environmental Issues Group is honored to host a zoom presentation held by writer and journalist, Mario Alejandro Ariza.  Mario is the author of “Disposable City: Miami’s Future on the Shores of Climate Catastrophe.” The book is his personal investigation into the present and future effects of climate change on his home. It is a vibrant portrait of a city whose unique culture might soon succumb to a watery death. Date:                     September 5, 2020 Time:                     10:30 AM (Eastern Time) Event Link:           See LWV PBC Calendar for Login Information (https://lwvpbc.org/events) Mario is featured in the PBS documentary, Sinking Cities: Miami. It is part of a series that examines how major coastal cities are coming to grips with the real-time effects of climate change. Mario currently works as a reporter covering federal courts at the Sun Sentinel. The zoom

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2020 Environment Issues Matter!

2020 Environment Issues Matter!

The 2020 Election matters because issues matter. One of the issues that matters is our environment – the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the earth that generates the food that sustains us. Most of the assaults on our environment occur from the effects of climate change. Data from the Fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4) (November 2017) confirms that global and U.S. temperatures continue to rise; precipitation is increasing in frequency and intensity; and ocean temperatures and sea levels are rising – all as a part of climate change. For local impacts, consider that gradual sea-level rise increases salt-water intrusion in our aquifers and groundwater pollution through sewage runoff, jeopardizing our water quality and supply. Sea-level rise also contributes to higher tides and increases the frequency and duration of localized flooding. Global warming and higher ocean temperatures increase the frequency and intensity of weather events; fuel the growth

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World Sea Turtle Day

by Kathy Panko On June 16, we recognized World Sea Turtle Day, a day to honor and focus on the importance of sea turtles. Florida is home to five species: green, loggerhead, hawksbill, leatherback, and Kemp’s ridley (the smallest & rarest). The threats that sea turtles face in the ocean and on land, has decreased sea turtle populations. As a result, every single species has been classified as threatened, “endangered” or critically endangered. Although they are born on land, they have navigated our waterways since the age of the dinosaurs. They have been nesting on beaches for millions of years. But now, sea turtles are in need of human protection. Even with laws in place to protect them, these amazing creatures are under constant threat. From the time their eggs are laid on hot sands to when they swim out into polluted waters, they are in continual danger. With global

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Protecting our World’s Oceans

League of Women Voters – Environmental Issues Group by Kathy Panko   The Environmental Issues Group (EIG) met on July 11. The first guest speaker was Catherine Uden, campaign organizer for Oceana, South Florida. Oceana is the world’s largest international nonprofit organization that focuses solely on ocean conservation. Catherine discussed  her work as a grassroots organizer and shared experiences of some of her successful campaigns. She identified practices and tips that will assist the EIG in its advocacy efforts. The topic for this discussion was plastic pollution.  REDUCE PLASTICS POLLUTION:  ISSUE: A ban on single-use plastics is too large to tackle through volunteer efforts. It’s time for statewide action to tackle pollution at the source. GOAL: Ban single-use plastics in your community. PLANNING: Support H.R.5845 – Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act of 2020 Identify Challenges – Who is your opposition? Coalition Building – Join forces with like-minded groups. Use

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Covid Is A Long Term Reality – Answer the Census Now To Help Us Keep Fighting It

Even after a vaccine joins the fight against Covid 19, the long term health effects and costs will remain in your community. It will take long term health resources, such as Medicare, Medicaid and community health centers to continue our response. And the way to secure those resources is to answer the Census NOW. Ask all your friends, organizations, congregations and neighbors to respond by going to www.2020census.gov for information in your own language. It takes just a few minutes to respond by phone (1-844-330-2020) or on line. And every response will bring over $30,000 to Florida during the next decade. The majority of that money will be for health programs.

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Hurricane Season 2020 and the CoVid-19 Pandemic

by Kathy Panko Another hurricane season has begun! Weather experts are predicting an above-average season, which started on June 1 and ends on November 30. A normal season brings around six Atlantic hurricanes, but forecasters are predicting eight this year. Risks are being compounded by the coronavirus pandemic, which has led to significant changes at hurricane shelters. All county emergency shelters will be following the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) guidelines on social distancing and health screenings. CDC is updating its website daily with the latest information and advice for the public. Information can be found on www.cdc.gov/ncov. Palm Beach County has 15 primary hurricane shelters, all of them located at public schools. There’s also a shelter at the South Florida Fairgrounds for people with special needs and a pet-friendly hurricane shelter at the West Boynton Park and Recreation Center. With over 11,000

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Positive Impacts of Coronavirus on the Environment

by Kathy Panko There is no denying that the health and economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic have been nothing short of catastrophic – and that will change our lives for a very long time. However, we can take one positive out of this difficult period – the environmental impact. With everyday life coming to an abrupt halt, our planet has been given a chance to breathe. In an effort to contain the spread of the pandemic, many factories have been shuttered, planes sit on runways, and more people are working from home, thus cutting traffic to a minimum. The global shutdown caused by the virus has become the biggest experiment ever in the reduction of greenhouse gases. As far as the Earth is concerned, the flora and fauna, as well as the rest of nature are all enjoying the benefits of this deadly virus. It seems like the plants

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FLORIDA’S TWENTIETH CENTURY WOMEN ENVIRONMENTALISTS

FLORIDA’S TWENTIETH CENTURY WOMEN ENVIRONMENTALISTS

As part of the 100th-anniversary celebrations of the League of Women Voters and Women’s Suffrage, as well as the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, we are pleased to bring you booklets acknowledging the contributions of women to Florida environmentalism in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Some of the women are well known; some lesser-known, but all are instrumental in addressing serious environmental issues either statewide or in specific parts of the state.

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EARTH DAY 2020

by Kathy Panko Earth Day is celebrated annually on April 22nd, and 2020 marks the 50th anniversary. The theme this year is climate action, which represents the biggest challenge to the future of humanity and the support systems that make our world habitable. The first Earth Day was a unified response to an environment in crisis – oil spills, smog, and polluted rivers.  Earth Day is now credited with launching the modern environmental movement.  In honor of the 50th anniversary, and considering the current coronavirus pandemic, we’re taking a fresh look at the 5 R’s of zero waste:  Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Rot – with emphasis on REFUSE. REFUSE:  Refuse what you do not need.  Our lives are full of stuff we don’t need, and each thing has an environmental cost. The first step to minimizing waste output is to prevent the waste from entering your home in the first

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