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Minnesota Prepares for “Global Day of Action”

April 13, 2007

Several thousand people are expected at the state Capitol Saturday for what’s called a “Global Warming Day of Action.” Scott Elkins is with theMinnesota Sierra Club, one of the sponsoring groups. He notes that the recent report released by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has sparked action.

"There’s a real concern about global warming. The facts are in. We’re having an impact on the atmosphere and on the climate of the earth, and I think a lot of people are looking for how they can be part of the solution."

Solutions for reducing greenhouse gases will be on display starting at noon on Saturday. Speakers include Minnesota polar explorer Ann Bancroft and several members of Congress. Elkins says the idea is to raise awareness of climate change and offer realistic responses.

"It’s a good thing that the debate is behind us now, because now we can start thinking about how we can make a positive difference to reduce the impacts of global warming, strengthen our economy, as well as protect our environment."

He believes Minnesota can play a big role in providing energy from non-polluting sources such as wind power and biofuels made with its farm products. Experts say global warming can be curbed if we cut carbon emissions by two percent a year for the next 40 years -- and Elkins notes that, even with this worldwide problem, there are things individuals can do.

"We can make a really big difference, doing things like converting light bulbs from incandescent to compact fluorescents; or combining errands around town, so we take fewer and shorter car trips. Obviously, on a bigger level, there are things like looking for a more fuel-efficient vehicle, or taking mass transit on a regular basis; riding your bike or getting out for a walk."

Jim Wishner/Chris Thomas, Public News Service - MN