The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, March 27, 2009


Global warming teach-in at Concord-Carlisle High School

On February 12, a “National Teach-in on Global Warming” took place at CCHS. Local residents heard excellent presentations about current Presidential and Congressional climate change initiatives. State Representative Cory Atkins was first to present, reporting on the status of ground-breaking state energy and environmental legislation. Former Senator Pam Resor and a representative from Nikki Tsongas’ office were also in attendance. Presentations were followed by small group discussions, where attendees were asked to brainstorm about priorities for the Obama administration during the first 100 days. This was one of around 800 Teach-Ins across America, all designed to provide broad citizen feedback to the new administration about federal priorities for immediate climate action. It was co-sponsored by Carlisle Climate Action; ConcordCAN; the Concord-Carlisle League of Women Voters; the Green Sanctuary Committee of First Parish, Concord; and the Environmental Action Committee of the First Religious Society of Carlisle.

The Concord-Carlisle Teach-in highlighted these priorities for federal action:

International agreement on carbon reduction standards is critical for human survival. These standards reflect the best advice of climate scientists as to what is needed to ward off catastrophic climate change.

The International Panel on Climate Change conference in Copenhagen in December, 2009 is extremely important; and the administration is urged to take a strong leadership role.

Legislation is required that encourages, mandates and funds energy- conservation and energy-efficiency measures, at all levels. The administration is urged to set an example by making all federal buildings and vehicles energy-efficient and issuing a call to action to all citizens and local governments to take responsibility for conserving energy.

The federal government should strongly prioritize “clean” renewable or alternative energy, throwing government support and subsidies to these forms of energy. Many Teach-in participants felt that something resembling a “Manhattan Project” on alternative energy is essential, with strong support for new ideas and research; a new energy infrastructure and large-scale creation of “green jobs.”

Teach-In participants were asked about what their towns can do and what they personally can do, to address climate change. Increasing energy-conservation in local residences, town buildings and public and private vehicles was seen by many as a high priority, as well as town government taking an active role in promoting and modeling energy- efficiency policies. The overriding conclusion from the event was that many local residents see the need for immediate action on climate change and energy issues at all levels: federal, state, local, and personal. To learn more about what you can do, contact ConcordCAN at, or Carlisle Climate Action at

© 2009 The Carlisle Mosquito