The More You Know…

New Music: Open Your Eyes by Katherine Fredricks & Stephen Bennett

In a lifetime spent – by preference – in the woods, I’ve faced danger a few times.  Rock climbing, and having the rock I was holding onto break off in my hand.  Accidentally walking between a mother elk and her calf.  Breaking through the ice, while crossing a stream on a winter camping trip.

The Oregon fires last fall were the first time I ever felt all humanity was directly endangered.  Listening to the news, I heard an Oregon firefighter say, he felt like he was fighting the whole world.  The first thought that leapt into my mind was, “Yeah, but who started this fight?”

I’ve believed we were in a human-caused climate emergency for years.  The wildfires of 2020 brought it home to me.  I was working as a temp for a chiropractor, watching the sky turn red overhead, as patient after patient called to cancel their appointments: “I can’t come in!  I’m being evacuated!”

I spoke to one eighty year old man, as he watched flames approach his home.  He didn’t want to leave.  His son was arguing with him: “You can’t fight a firestorm with a garden hose!”

So I sent texts for Joe Biden and was thrilled when he was elected.  I write my Congressional  Representatives regularly on climate issues.  

Last week, I was happy to receive a newsletter from Congressman Blumenauer, saying that he is working with Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on legislation to mandate the declaration of a national climate emergency. Read article here.

Last fall, watching fire clouds tower over me, I began writing a song, Open Your Eyes!  Composer Stephen Bennett related to it instantly, because his parents live in California, where similar fire clouds threatened their home.  Thank you to the members of Climate Reality, and to all people of good will and good science, who are working hard to (as Congressman Blumenauer puts it) “halt, reverse, mitigate, and prepare for the consequences of this climate crisis.”

LISTEN TO “OPEN YOUR EYES”

Global solutions from Oregon

CONNECTING THE pARIS aGREEMENT (and COP26!) TO sOUTHERN oREGON

Addressing Climate Change is a global effort, and you can get involved in the process from right where you are in Oregon. And as of today, February 21, 2021, the United States is back in the Paris Agreement with American scientists, policy makers, businesses and diplomats once again contributing to the work of the United Nations on climate. UNFCCC stands for United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

This video is a recording of Paris Agreement 101 presented by Oregon State University and the Southwestern Oregon Chapter of The Climate Reality project with presenters (scroll down for bios) Zac Pinard, Grace Doleshel and Frank Granshaw, with thanks to Gregg Walker. As you watch, you will hear an alphabet soup of terms. UNFCCC? COP26? YOUNGO? RINGO? Don’t let it throw you off. Scroll down for links and terms.

Some terms

  • UNFCCC = United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, pronounced ‘U-N-F-triple C,’ the UN effort on Climate Change.
  • COP = Conference of the Parties (Everyone gets together, this year in Glasgow for COP26, meets, greets, and makes decisions.)
  • NGO = Non-governmental Organization (An organization often focused on an issue that is independent from government, like The Climate Reality Project or OXFAM.)
  • NDC = Nationally Determined Contribution or INDC, Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (What individual nations have said they will do or intend to do.)
  • SBI = Subsidiary Body for Implementation (A group within the UNFCCC that keeps an eye on Greenhouse Gas Emissions, mitigations and other things climate with the goal of supporting national efforts to meet climate goals.)
  • SBSTA = Also SBs, Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technical Advice. (When you need an expert to help you with implementation and policy, these guys are also within the UNFCCC.)
  • ACE = Action for Climate Empowerment. (A group designed to encourage people from all walks of life and all nations to learn about climate change and efforts to address it.)
  • YOUNGO = Also called COY (Conference of Youth), a group of young people who have come together over social media to address climate within the UNFCCC effort. The ‘NGO‘ at the end is for Non-governmental Organizations.
  • RINGO / BINGO = You get the idea, there are a number of groups of those brought together by interests, expertise, and collegiality. YOUNGO as well as RINGO for researchers (Research and Independent Non-governmental Organizations), BINGO for Business and Industry Non-governmental Organizations.
  • Climate Bridge = an effort to allow interested parties, individuals and organizations to attend the COPs virtually.

A Climate Bridge in Oregon. Not everyone can–or should–travel to Glasgow for COP26. But the more folks who can participate in this global process to address climate change the better. Folks are needed from all and everywhere if we are going to tackle the challenge that is right-now all around us. Frank Granshaw has invested tremendous effort into development of a virtual bridge that last year linked Portland, Oregon, to COP25. This Prezi presentation walks you through the idea with links, a timeline, and information. If there is leadership and interest, we could organize a Virtual Bridge to COP26 right here in Southern Oregon.


Need another video? Get some latest policy hopes as you dig deeper with this video, released in honor of today–our first day back into the Paris Agreement!–by TEDCountdown, featuring Christiana Figueres, one of the architects of the Paris Agreement, Al Gore, Chairman of The Climate Reality Project, and John Kerry, the new US Special Envoy for Climate.

Find this video on TED

A Key Resource:

Be sure to order the 8th Edition.

Zac mentioned this book in his presentation, Global Environmental Politics, 8th Edition, by Pamela S. Chasek and David L. Downie. I ordered one! What I liked about the book is that it is packed with information yet organized in a way that I can actually navigate that information. It begins with an introduction as to how Global Environmental Politics started, and covers basics, timelines, stakeholders, research, wealth and energy management, developmental goals, and there is even a little rah-rah in there as people come together in teams to roll up their sleeves and get the work done. It is an academic introduction, and I appreciated that the book covers the changing scope of the effort. This work started with careful measurement of greenhouse gasses. It has grown into an awareness that climate is about environment and so it touches everything from food and water systems to economic systems to pollution to energy to human culture and every life on earth. A great recommendation.

One more resource invitation: Zac works for Climate XChange, a nonprofit focused on research, education and advocacy tools designed to move us toward a clean energy economy. Consider plugging into the State Climate Policy Network!  The SCPN is a nationwide network of professionals in the climate space, a great place to connect with important people and organizations. Send your email to zac@climate-xchange.org to join and receive newsletter updates!


Thank you to our organizers and presenters!

Zac Pinard grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area before moving to the Pacific Northwest for college. He graduated from Oregon State University in 2019 with a B.S. in Environmental Science, specializing in Environmental Economics and Policy. In 2020, he worked as a legislative assistant for the chair of the Oregon House Committee on Energy and the Environment. During that short session, he gained significant exposure to the political battle surrounding an economy-wide carbon pricing bill. He hopes he can take that experience forward to help implement robust carbon pricing mechanisms throughout the nation.


Grace Doleshel is a 19 year old environmental activist and student at Oregon State University pursuing a BS in Environmental Public Policy with a minor in Social Justice. She has worked in environmental advocacy and policy since age 14 and has policy experience at a local, state, national and international level, most recently she attended the COP 25 Climate Conference in Madrid, Spain.  Grace’s experience includes environmental education, policy, public speaking and writing.  She currently works as the Coordinator of Environmental Affairs for the Associated Students of Oregon State University.


Frank Granshaw is a retired geoscience educator, glacial geologist, and insufferably proud grandpa from Portland, Oregon. In addition to being actively involved  in climate education and advocacy through Portland State University, the Greater Portland Sustainability Education Network, Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon’s Creation Justice Program, American Geophysical Union, and the Oregon Science Network of the Union of Concerned Scientists, he has been an observer delegate to two UN Climate summits and is one of the founders of the PDX Climate Bridge.


Gregg B. Walker is Professor and Chair of the Department of Speech Communication, Adjunct Professor of Forest Resources, and Director of the Peace Studies program at Oregon State University in Corvallis. In addition, Professor Walker conducts training programs on collaborative decision making, designs collaborative public participation processes, facilitates collaborative learning community workshops, and researches community-level collaboration efforts. Gregg is also a co-author for Working through Environmental Conflict; The Collaborative Learning Approach.


We plan to do more webinars. Please check back for events, or add your name to the chapter mailing list by emailing us your name. Consider applying to a Leadership Corps training from The Climate Reality Project, and/or joining an Oregon Chapter.

The Paris Agreement 101

This event is over. View the recording and plenty of info and resources on our global solutions from Oregon post!

The Eiffel Tower in Paris France. The Paris Accords, an international agreement to keep earth’s temperature below 1.5 C was signed in 2015. We are not yet anywhere near meeting these goals.

“What goes on at Climate Change COPs?” Now that the U.S. has rejoined the Paris Climate Accords under President Biden, it is more important than ever to learn how the international debate on climate change is conducted and what the U.S. will be participating in going forward.  Join us February 10th at 4pm for a presentation and discussion about the Paris Agreement, COP26, and the work of the United Nations UNFCCC led by The Climate Reality Project SW Oregon Chapter’s two COP alums, Grace Doleshel and Zac Pinard.

This is an opportunity to learn the basics–COP, what? Paris, which?–then dig a little deeper, as well as learn how to get connected with the global effort from right here in beautiful Oregon.

This discussion and presentation offered in partnership with Oregon State University UNFCCC and student programs.

Want to get prepped and ready to go for the discussion? Read up on The Paris Agreement at The Climate Reality Project.

Our Presenters:

Zac Pinard grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area before moving to the Pacific Northwest for college. He graduated from Oregon State University in 2019 with a B.S. in Environmental Science, specializing in Environmental Economics and Policy. In 2020, he worked as a legislative assistant for the chair of the Oregon House Committee on Energy and the Environment. During that short session, he gained significant exposure to the political battle surrounding an economy-wide carbon pricing bill. He hopes he can take that experience forward to help implement robust carbon pricing mechanisms throughout the nation.


Grace is a 19 year old environmental activist and student at Oregon State University pursuing a BS in Environmental Public Policy with a minor in Social Justice. She has worked in environmental advocacy and policy since age 14 and has policy experience at a local, state, national and international level, most recently she attended the COP 25 Climate Conference in Madrid, Spain.  Grace’s experience includes environmental education, policy, public speaking and writing.  She currently works as the Coordinator of Environmental Affairs for the Associated Students of Oregon State University 


Frank Granshaw is a retired geoscience educator, glacial geologist, and insufferably proud grandpa from Portland, Oregon. In addition to being actively involved  in climate education and advocacy through Portland State University, the Greater Portland Sustainability Education Network, Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon’s Creation Justice Program, American Geophysical Union, and the Oregon Science Network of the Union of Concerned Scientists, he has been an observer delegate to two UN Climate summits and is one of the founders of the PDX Climate Bridge.


New Music: Without Shared Facts

Guest post by Katherine Fredricks

After the assault on the US Capital, we are all grateful to the courts, the election officials, the police and the military for protecting America from a failed insurrection.  Unfortunately, the long term effects of misinformation and disinformation will not disburse as quickly as the Capital rioters.

I’m a member of the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS).  Back in 2015,  UCS invited all their members to a webinar by Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Neela Banerjee.  Her research showed that Exxon has known for decades that climate change was real, human caused, and potentially catastrophic. READ MORE HERE  

During that webinar, one of the speakers pointed out that the disinformation tactics used by Exxon were exactly the same as those used by tobacco companies, when they fought lawsuits against cigarettes.  “They know these tactics failed, so what will they try instead?”

We’ve seen what they tried.  They stacked the courts.  

Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett’s father was an executive for Royal Dutch Shell. READ MORE HERE

According to EcoWatch, Brett Kavanaugh “accepts the science behind climate change, but has ruled against the Environmental Protection Agency’s attempts to do anything about it.”  READ MORE HERE

According to American Progress, Justice Gorsuch “did not appear on President Trump’s first list of potential Supreme Court nominees in May 2016, but he appeared on Trump’s second list just weeks after writing a judicial manifesto arguing that judges should have more power to strike down federal regulations.” READ MORE HERE

And although the disinformation surrounding the 2020 Presidential election may have more to do with Trump’s ego than big oil, the disinformation handbook continues to be used by multinational corporations to protect their profits at the expense of human health and safety. READ MORE HERE

In response to all this disinformation and to the recent siege of the Capital, composer Stephen Bennett & I wrote a new song.  We hope you enjoy it.

LISTEN HERE

Katherine Brann Fredricks has had 6 shows in NYC festivals in the last 8 years, winning or nominated for 28 Awards.  https://katherine-b-fredricks.squarespace.com/ 

Stephen Wagener Bennett is a writer, composer, director, and dramaturg based in Brooklyn. He has written for new and experimental theatre for the last decade, and holds an MFA from NYU’s Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program. stephenwagenerbennett.com

Oregon Grassroots Organize for Climate

On March 10, 2020, surrounded by young people, Oregon Governor Kate Brown responded to the outcry for Climate by signing Executive Order 20-04 into law. This Executive Order mandated deep changes affecting almost every aspect of life in the state, not just for a reduction in Greenhouse Gas emissions, but for the development of renewable alternatives and other climate solutions that would put Oregon at the forefront to save the planet.

“Gov Brown be a Climate Hero!” Lobby Day in 2018 featured this banner in an effort led by 350Eugene and Oregon activist coalitions. Following a failure of Oregon State legislators to pass climate legislation in session, Governor Brown signed a comprehensive and wide reaching Executive Order addressing Climate Change.
Photo by Backbone Campaign CC BY 2.0 cropped

It was a marvelous day, an amazing achievement, and … complicated. This magnificent Executive Order, EO 20-04, is now known as the Oregon Climate Action Plan. Just as climate change touches almost every part of our daily lives, the Oregon Climate Action Plan calls on just about every state agency to address the effort–some with very clear mandates for emissions reductions and energy efficiencies.


WHEREAS, given the urgency and severity…for future generations…

(Read the Executive Order here. )


It is a little daunting, but the sheer enormity of the effort is necessary. Even more necessary is the continued commitment of Oregonians to ensure these new policies are put into effect. And Oregonians are committed. A green army of everyone from everyday folks to experts, citizens to organizations, have mobilized to support the work of the state agencies as they figure out how to bring the Oregon Climate Action Plan to Life.

The Southwestern Oregon Chapter of The Climate Reality Project was glad to be a small part of this big effort. On January 15, 2021, 4pm, the chapter had the opportunity to host Madison Daisy Hathaway of Renew Oregon who walked us through what the statewide Grassroots organizing effort looks like now. It is a presentation focused on how we as Oregonians can support the Oregon climate coalition efforts and keep up the energy for the climate movement.

Madison Daisy, Renew Oregon

About the presentation and video: Madison Daisy Hathaway provided a brief overview of Executive Order 20-04, explained the current structure of the OCAP Coalition working on the rulemaking related to the EO, and shared opportunities for grassroots advocates to get involved.  

Madison Daisy Hathaway, Renew Oregon’s Oregon Climate Action Plan Coalition Coordinator, mobilizes grassroots partners in an effort to pass, then support, a robust Cap & Invest program. She brought hundreds of youth leaders into the campaign and has a deep passion for introducing youth to the legislative process and providing them with the skills to be effective climate policy advocates. Prior to joining Renew, she worked for the Sunrise Movement in New York City as the Regional Lead Organizer. There, she and her team elected strong climate champions to the NY state legislature. Madison Daisy holds a BS in Quantitative Economics and Sustainable Urban Development from the Portland State Honor’s College.

Interested in getting plugged in?


Looking to get involved, learn more about The Climate Reality Project and/or join a chapter!