Concentration of CO2 in the Atmosphere

Oregon Fire Burns State Senator’s Home


Sen. Fred Girod walks through the remains of his home near Mill City, Oregon, on Sept. 13, 2020. Mill City, Gates and other towns along the Santiam River were all but destroyed by the Beachie Creek Fire and residents were forced to evacuate. “This was my forever home,” Girod said. Photo by Brooke Herbert /The Oregonian.

Claire Cohen-Norris

This man is walking through what is left of his home that his parents built in 1968.

He is a state senator. He is one of the eleven state senators that walked out and hid so there would be no quorum and Oregon would be unable to pass climate legislation.

Here’s the thing. Climate change is ruthless. It doesn’t care whether you have worked to mitigate it, or whether you’ve personally pumped oil out of the ground.

It doesn’t care. Because it isn’t a political being. It is reality.

We can still prevent far worse. But we have to get really serious, really fast. Here’s how.

  • Always vote for people who accept science for what it is—reasoned conclusions based on observations.
  • Next, do not buy anything that burns fossil fuels. Not a gas stove, not an oil furnace, not a gas- engine car. Every bit of infrastructure bought now must be clean-energy-based. Continue to drive your gas car and burn oil in your furnace, but do the research NOW, for how to replace them with systems using clean energy. When the furnace or car dies, you will be informed and ready to do the right thing.
  • Finally, figure out what policies you need to enable you to transition to clean energy and demand them. How sad that this now homeless state senator is still not facing the reality of the serious times he and we are now experiencing.

Claire Cohen-Norris is a climate educator and science teacher. She is the chapter leader of Citizens Climate Lobby Mid Hudson Valley West, based in Sullivan County, NY.

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