ExxonMobil Ignores IPCC Warning, Vows to Burn All Oil Reserves
The latest authoritative document, produced by 1,250 international scientists and approved by nearly 200 governments, argued that climate change can be avoided if we move fast to decarbonise the global economy, without having to sacrifice living standards energy.
“It does not cost the world to save the planet,” said economist Professor Ottmar Edenhofer, the co-chair of the report.
And the sooner we act the cheaper and better it will be. The report concluded that averting a two degree Celsius increase in temperature would only limit growth by the relatively tiny amount of 0.06 percent. But we have to act now if fighting climate change is to remain affordable. “The report is clear: the more you wait, the more it will cost [and] the more difficult it will become,” argued EU Climate Change Commissioner, Connie Hedegaard.
A business-as-usual scenario would lead to a catastrophic temperature rise of 3.7 Celsius to 4.8 Celsius rise in temperature before 2100. A temperature rise of that nature would wreak havoc on the climate and would vehemently alter life as we know it, causing significant sea level rise and extreme weather.
But it is this business-as-usual scenario that Exxon is betting on. Big time.
Two weeks ago, on the same day as the IPCC’s second report on climate change, Exxon published a deeply cynical rebuke in a report to investors. The oil company argued that, because it was “highly unlikely” that governments would address climate change, it was going to carry on drilling for oil and gas regardless.
ExxonMobil’s carbon asset risk report, which was published in response to investor demand, was a brazen, arrogant and deeply flawed vision of the future.
The oil company argued that “we are confident that none of our hydrocarbon reserves are now or will become ‘stranded’.”
This statement blindly flies in the face of the indisputable scientific evidence that a vast majority of fossil fuels will need to stay in the ground, if dangerous, runaway climate change will be avoided.
For the past decade a growing number of institutional investors, scientists and activists have argued that we cannot afford to burn all the fossil fuel reserves, if we want to keep climate change to below two degrees warming.
The respected specialists in this area, Carbon Tracker issued a report last year which concluded that at least two-thirds of fossil fuel reserves would have to remain underground if the world was to meet existing internationally agreed targets to avoid the threshold for “dangerous” climate change.
Exxon’s statement is a two-fingered response to this analysis and the latest IPCC report. Natasha Lamb, director of equity research at Arjuna Capital, a sustainable wealth management group responded by saying that “now investors know that Exxon is not addressing the low carbon scenario and (is) placing investor capital at risk.”
At the time, Executive Director Steve Kretzmann said: “Of course they don’t believe governments are going to address climate change adequately—they are in fact betting billions on the failure of climate and clean energy policy. And they’re shoring up their bet by buying politicians and spending millions to sow doubt and promote inaction.”
As Steve pointed out, what Exxon is doing is the next part of its long running campaign to delay action on climate change. For decades the oil giant has led the denial campaign against climate change, spending tens of millions in doing so.
So we have cobbled together a quick snapshot of the company’s 25 year “Drop Dead” denial campaign, where the oil company has deliberately obfuscated the debate, exaggerating the scientific uncertainties. Although the company is no longer ignoring or denying climate science, its denial campaign has entered into a new phase.
As Steve Kretzmann said last week: “Now it is denying that the American people and people around the world have the will and the power to change our futures and save our children.”
But this latest excuse for inaction is just part of Exxon’s twenty five years of saying to the world: “Drop Dead”
Late 1980's: Exxon hires a Harvard astrophysicist named Brian Flannery to examine the mathematical models behind global warming. In the late eighties, Flannery and Exxon give grants to several prestigious American universities, starting with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Flannery was blunt with his message for MIT researchers: “Embrace the uncertainty in all of this,” he told them.
1990: As the IPCC prepares their first summary document on climate change, Flannery asks the meeting how could the scientists justify 60-80 percent cuts in carbon dioxide, given all the uncertainties?
1992: Exxon is a prominent member of the Global Climate Coalition (GCC), the most active fossil fuel front group questioning the science of climate change. In 1992 the GCC begins using well-known climate skeptics like Patrick Michaels, Robert Balling and Fred Singer (all partly funded by Exxon) as “experts.”
April 1992: Flannery is quoted by the World Coal Institute in a briefing for climate negotiators: “because model-based projections are controversial, uncertain and without confirmation, scientists are divided in their opinion about the likelihood and consequences of climate change.”
October 1997: Lee Raymond devotes 33 paragraphs of a 78 paragraph speech at the 15th World Petroleum Congress in Beijing, arguing that climate change was an “illusion” and that there was no need for cuts in CO2.
He said: “Only four percent of the carbon dioxide entering the atmosphere is due to human activities—96 per cent comes from nature. Leaping to radically cut this tiny silver of the greenhouse pie on the premise that it will affect climate defies common sense and lacks foundation in our current understanding of the climate system … It is highly unlikely that the temperature in the middle of the next century will be affected whether policies are enacted now or 20 years from now.”
He also warns delegates that “it would be tragic indeed if the people of this region were deprived of the opportunity for continued prosperity by misguided restrictions and regulations.”
One Exxon executive, who had access to Raymond, concedes: “They had come to the conclusion that the whole debate around global warming was kind of a hoax. Nobody inside Exxon dared question that.”
June 1997: ExxonMobil takes out an advert in the U.S. press advocating that “Instead of rigid targets and timetables, governments should consider alternatives … encourage voluntary initiatives.”
1997: Lee Raymond makes a speech: “In the debate over global climate change, one of the most critical facts has become one of the most ignored—the undeniable link between economic vitality and energy use.”
“Achieving economic growth remains one of the world’s critical needs, and with good reason. It creates more and better jobs, improves our quality of life and enables us to safeguard the environment. When economies grow, their energy consumption rises. It’s no accident that nations with the highest standard of living have the highest per-capita use of energy, about 85 percent of which comes from fossil fuels.”
1998: Exxon sets up the “Global Climate Science Team.” A memo written that year for GSCT said: “victory will be achieved when average citizens understand (recognize) uncertainties in climate science” and when public “recognition of uncertainty becomes part of ‘convention wisdom’”.
The memo proposes that Exxon and its PR firms “develop and implement a national media relations program to inform the media about the uncertainties in climate science.”
Between 1998 and 2005, Exxon donates $16 million to numerous right-wing and libertarian think tanks to manufacture uncertainty about climate change.
May 31, 2000: Lee Raymond backs a petition signed by anti-IPCC scientists saying that “There is no convincing scientific that any release of carbon dioxide, methane or other greenhouse gases is causing or will in the foreseeable future cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate.”
Raymond said: “What I am saying is there is a substantial difference of view in the scientific community as to what exactly is going on … We’re not going to follow what is politically correct”.
He also shows shareholders a chart of temperature data from satellites and stated that “if you just eyeball that, you could make a case statistically that, in fact, the temperature is going down.”
Exxon’s position remains “science is not now able to confirm that fossil fuel use has led to any significant global warming.”
2000: Brian Flannery said: “ExxonMobil is firmly against the Kyoto Protocol … it achieves very little and costs too much.” He also claimed that emissions reductions were unfeasible: “You are going to need to expand the supply to meet the pressing future needs for energy, for things like the modern internet, the ‘e’ economy.”
May 2001: Lee Raymond said: “We see the Kyoto Protocol as unworkable, unfair, ineffective and potentially damaging to other vital economic and national interests. The debate over Kyoto has distracted policymakers for too long. I am encouraged to see more constructive discussions focusing on more realistic approaches … We think the best path forward is through attention to longer-range technological approaches and economically justified voluntary actions, as well as a strong program of climate science.”
Sept. 2001: The IPCC meets in London to reach agreement on its Third Assessment Report on climate change. The IPCC’s draft final report contains the following line: “The Earth’s climate system has demonstrably changed on both global and regional scales since the pre-industrial era, with some of these changes attributable to human activities.”
ExxonMobil suggests an amendment deleting the text: “with some of these changes attributable to human activities.”
2002: ExxonMobil has “become increasingly convinced that the only sensible approach is to take a longer term perspective,” adding that “if warming turns out to be a real problem, will we be willing to shut down the economies of the industrialized world … ?”
March 11, 2002: Lee Raymond, says that the corporation intends to “stay the course” with its skepticism regarding climate change “until someone comes along with new information.”
March 2002: Bob B. Peterson, Chairman and CEO of Imperial Oil (the ExxonMobil subsidiary in Canada) tells the Canadian Press: “Kyoto is an economic entity. It has nothing to do with the environment. It has to do with world trade. This is a wealth-transfer scheme between developed and developing nations. And it’s been couched and clothed in some kind of environmental movement. That’s the dumbest-assed thing I’ve heard in a long time.”
Jan. 2004: Exxon places an advert in the New York Times: “Scientific uncertainties continue to limit our ability to make objective, quantitative determinations regarding the human role in recent climate change or the degree and consequences of future change.”
2005: ExxonMobil said on its website: “While assessments such as those of the IPCC have expressed growing confidence that recent warming can be attributed to increases in greenhouse gases, these conclusions rely on expert judgment rather than objective, reproducible statistical methods. Taken together, gaps in the scientific basis for theoretical climate models and the interplay of significant natural variability make it very difficult to determine objectively the extent to which recent climate changes might be the result of human actions.”
2005-2010: ExxonMobil funds one of the world’s leading climate skeptics Dr. Willie Soon in at least four grants totaling $335,000.
2006: The British Royal Society writes to Exxon asking the company to stop funding organizations which feature information “on their websites that misrepresented the science of climate change, by outright denial of the evidence that greenhouse gases are driving climate change, or by overstating the amount and significance of uncertainty in knowledge or by conveying a misleading impression of the potential impacts of anthropogenic climate change”.
Jan. 2007: Exxon states that, on climate change, “We know enough now—or society knows enough now—that the risk is serious and action should be taken”.
Feb. 2007: Rex Tillerson, ExxonMobil’s CEO highlights the uncertainties in the science on climate change at a speech at the Cambridge Energy Research Associates’ annual conference in Houston. “While our understanding of the science continues to evolve and improve, there is still much that we do not know and cannot fully recognize in efforts to model and predict future climate behavior,” he said.
2008: Exxon faces a shareholder revolt due to its stance on climate change. One of those calling for change, F&C Asset Management’s director of governance and sustainable investment, Kevin Litvack, said, “Despite top-notch individual directors, the company’s record over the last decade, particularly regarding climate change, demonstrates that debate has been lacking.”
May 2008: Exxon publishes the following statement: “In 2008, we will discontinue contributions to several public policy groups, whose position on climate change could divert attention from the important discussion on how the world will secure energy required for economic growth in a responsible manner”.
2009: Despite promising to end funding climate denial, Exxon gives approximately $1.3 million to climate denial organizations during 2009.
June 2012: In a major speech at the Council On Foreign Relations, ExxonMobil chief executive, Rex Tillerson, argues that fears about climate change are overblown. Although he acknowledged that burning of fossil fuels are causing climate change, he argued that society would be able to adapt. The risks of oil and gas drilling can be mitigated, he told the audience. “We have spent our entire existence adapting. We’ll adapt. It’s an engineering problem and there will be an engineering solution,” he said.
May 2013: At the company AGM, Rex Tillerson tells the audience that an economy that runs on oil is here to stay and cutting carbon emissions would do no good. He asked, “What good is it to save the planet if humanity suffers?”
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This Has Happened Before<p>We shouldn't be surprised global biodiversity has responded so rapidly to global warming. This has happened before, and with dramatic consequences.</p><p><strong>252 million years ago…</strong></p><p>At the end of the Permian geological period about 252 million years ago, global temperatures warmed by 10℃ over 30,000-60,000 years as a result of greenhouse gas emissions from volcano eruptions in Siberia.</p><p><a href="https://www.pnas.org/content/117/30/17578" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">A 2020 study</a> of the fossils from that time shows the pronounced peak in biodiversity at the equator flattened and spread. During this mammoth rearranging of global biodiversity, 90% of all marine species were killed.</p><p><strong>125,000 years ago…</strong></p><p><a href="https://www.pnas.org/content/109/52/21378" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">A 2012 study showed</a> that more recently, during the rapid warming around 125,000 years ago, there was a similar swift movement of reef corals away from the tropics, as documented in the fossil record. The result was a pattern similar to the one we describe, although there was no associated mass extinction.</p><p>Authors of the study suggested their results might foreshadow the effects of our current global warming, ominously warning there could be mass extinctions in the near future as species move into the subtropics, where they might struggle to compete and adapt.</p><p><strong>Today…</strong></p><p><a href="https://www.pnas.org/content/117/23/12891" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">During the last ice age</a>, which ended around 15,000 years ago, the richness of forams (a type of hard-shelled, single-celled plankton) peaked at the equator and has been dropping there ever since. This is significant as plankton is a keystone species in the foodweb.</p><p>Our study shows that decline has accelerated in recent decades due to human-driven climate change.</p>
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The coronavirus has isolated many of us in our homes this year. We've been forced to slow down a little, maybe looking out our windows, becoming more in tune with the rhythms of our yards. Perhaps we've begun to notice more, like the birds hopping around in the bushes out back, wondering (maybe for the first time) what they are.
A Coeligena helianthea hummingbird is photographed during a birdwatching trail at the Monserrate hill in Bogota on November 11, 2020. Colombia is the country with the largest bird diversity in the world, home to about 1,934 different bird species, a fifth of the total known. JUAN BARRETO / AFP / Getty Images
1. Choosing the Right Binoculars<p>Binoculars are a relatively indispensable tool for most birders – but, for those just starting out, it might not yet be worth the several-hundred-dollar investment. If you aren't able to scour the attics of friends or borrow a pair from a fellow bird watcher, some local birding and naturalist groups have <a href="https://vashonaudubon.org/all-about-vashon-birds/binoculars-check-out/" target="_blank">binocular loaning programs</a> for members, allowing you to plan ahead for a day (or week) of birding.</p><p>When you're ready to take the plunge, choosing a pair or binoculars should take some careful deliberation based on your needs and preferences; some <a href="https://www.birdwatchersdigest.com/bwdsite/explore/optics/top-10-tips-buying-binoculars-bird-watching.php" target="_blank">major considerations</a> might include size, ease of use, <a href="https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/binoculars.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">magnification</a>, and price. While professional binoculars can easily run north of $1,000, there are plenty of perfectly suitable entry-level binoculars under $200. You might not get the perfect precision and clarity of more elite models, but a less expensive pair will allow you to strengthen your birding skills while deciding if you're interested in investing in a premium pair.</p><p>For a budget-friendly option, check out resale options on eBay, Facebook marketplace, or neighborhood yard sales: you might find a nicer pair whose retail price isn't within your budget.</p>
2. Know What Birds Are in Your Area<p>When I began to pay more attention to the birds just outside my apartment building, I started to learn what species have always been around me: European starlings, house sparrows, blue jays, black capped chickadees, and the occasional red-bellied woodpecker. They had always been there, but I hadn't ever taken the time to identify them. Once you learn to <a href="https://www.audubon.org/news/get-know-these-20-common-birds_" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">recognize common birds</a> in your area, you'll be able to identify the typical species right outside your window and in your community. Of course, permanent residential birds in your neighborhood will <a href="https://nestwatch.org/learn/focal-species/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">vary by region</a>, as will those migrating through it.</p>
3. Get Out and Explore<p>Venturing elsewhere might allow you to spot some different species beyond those frequenting your backyard. Anywhere with water or greenery offers a place for birding; as an urbanite myself, I've found that even small- and mid-sized parks in New York City allow me to find more elusive birds (although Central Park takes the crown for an afternoon of urban birding).</p><p>If you are able to travel a bit further from home, <a href="https://www.fws.gov/refuges/" target="_blank">national wildlife refuges</a> and <a href="https://www.americasstateparks.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">state/national parks</a> are excellent places to explore bird habitats and perhaps log some less-common sightings. The American Birding Association also lists <a href="https://www.aba.org/aba-area-birding-trails/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">birding trails by state</a>, and Audubon and BirdLife International identify <a href="https://www.audubon.org/important-bird-areas" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Important Bird Areas (IBAs)</a> across the country – important bird habitats and iconic places that activists are fighting to protect – where birders can spot birds of significance.</p>
4. Finding a Bird: Stop, Look, Listen, Repeat<p>The National Audubon Society recommends the "<a href="https://www.audubon.org/news/how-find-bird" target="_blank">stop, look, listen, repeat</a>" mantra when seeking and identifying birds.</p><p>First and foremost, spotting birds requires attention. Stopping – getting out of the car, pausing on the sidewalk, trail, or in the backyard to look up – is the most important step.</p><p>When looking for birds, try to avoid gazing wildly around; rather, scan your surroundings, focusing on any odd shapes or shadows, trying to think about where a bird might perch (power lines, fence posts, branches), or keep an eye on the sky for flying eagles and hawks. In open areas like fields and beaches, you might have a more panoramic view, and can take in different sections of the landscape at a time. Look around with the naked eye before reaching for the binoculars to hone in.</p><p>While it can be hard to sift through the noise, listening for birds is perhaps an even more important element of bird watching than looking. Once you spend more time in the field, you'll be able to parse apart the racket and identify specific species, especially aided by Audubon's Bird Guide app or by learning from their <a href="https://www.audubon.org/section/birding-ear" target="_blank">Birding by Ear series</a>.</p><p>Repeat this pattern as you continue on your way, stopping to look and listen for birds as you go, rather than waiting for them to come to you. </p>
5. Identification<p>When you head out for a day of bird watching – especially when you're hoping to spot some new species – you'll want to be armed with the tools to identify what you see. <a href="https://www.audubon.org/news/how-identify-birds" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Major considerations when identifying birds</a> are their group (such as owls, hawks, or sparrow-like birds), size and shape, behavior, voice, field marks, season, and habitat.</p><p>The <a href="https://www.sibleyguides.com/about/the-sibley-guide-to-birds/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Sibley Guide to Birds</a> and the <a href="https://www.hmhbooks.com/shop/books/peterson-field-guide-to-birds-of-north-america-second-edition/9781328771445" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Peterson Field Guide</a> are widely considered the best books for identifying birds in North America, although many <a href="https://www.audubon.org/news/what-bird-guide-best-you" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">specialized guides</a> focus on specific species or regions as well.</p><p>Plenty of <a href="https://blog.nature.org/science/2013/05/27/boucher-bird-blog-apps-smart-birder/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">bird identification apps</a> have popped up in recent years – including National Geographic Birds, Sibley eGuide to Birds, iNaturalist, Merlin Bird ID, and Birdsnap – which are basically a <a href="https://www.audubon.org/news/the-best-birding-apps-and-field-guides" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">field guide in your pocket</a>. I'm partial to the Audubon Bird Guide, which allows users to filter by common identifiers, including a bird's habitat, color, activity, tail shape, and general type, adding them all to a personal map to view your sightings.</p>
6. Recording Your Sightings<p><span>As you deepen your commitment to birding, you might join the community of birders that track and quantify their sightings, building their </span><a href="https://www.thespruce.com/what-birds-count-on-a-life-list-386704#:~:text=A%20life%20list%20is%20a,which%20birds%20you%20have%20seen." target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">life list</a><span>.</span></p><p>While a standard notebook noting the date, species name, habitat, vocalizations, or any other data you wish to include will suffice, some birders opt for a more <a href="https://www.riteintherain.com/no-195-birders-journal" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">structured birder's journal</a> with pre-determined fields to record your encounters, take notes, draw sketches, etc.</p><p>Many birders also choose to record their sightings online and in shared databases (which include many of the field guide apps), often pinpointing them on a map for others to view. Launched by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Audubon, <a href="https://ebird.org/home" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">eBird is one of the largest databases and citizen science projects around birding</a>, where hundreds of thousands of birders enter their sightings, and users can explore birds in regions and hotspots around the world. Users can also record their sightings on the <a href="https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ebird/id988799279" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">eBird app</a>.</p>
7. Attracting Birds to Your Own Yard<p>Feeding birds is a common phenomenon: more than 40% of Americans maintain a birdfeeder to attract birds and watch them feast.</p><p>Not all birdfeed is created equal, however. Many commercial varieties are mostly made with "fillers" (oats, red millet, etc.) that birds will largely leave untouched. After researching what birds to expect in your area – and which ones you want to attract – you can create your own birdfeed with <a href="https://www.allaboutbirds.org/news/types-of-bird-seed-a-quick-guide/?pid=1142" target="_blank">seeds that will appeal to them</a>.</p><p>Beyond filling a birdfeeder, <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/eco-friendly-lawn-2651194858.html" target="_self">transforming your yard into an eco-friendly oasis</a> is by far the best way to attract birds. Choosing to forgo mowing your lawn, planting native flowers and grasses, and ditching the pesticides will bring back the bugs that birds feed on, and provide a safe haven in which birds can happily live and eat.</p><p>While it's widely considered acceptable – and even beneficial – to feed birds with appropriate seeds, communal birdfeeders often <a href="https://www.audubon.org/news/to-feed-or-not-feed" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">foster unlikely interactions between different species</a>, who can then transmit harmful diseases and parasites to one another. Maintaining several bird feeders with different types of seeds might keep different species from coming into contact, and feeders can be <a href="https://www.allaboutbirds.org/news/how-to-clean-your-bird-feeder/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">cleaned to prevent the spread of infection</a>.</p>
8. Inclusivity and Anti-Racism in the Birding Community<p>Like all outdoor activities and areas of scientific study, birding communities are subject to racist and discriminatory ideologies. Black birders have long experienced discrimination and underrepresentation in outdoor spaces. The work of organizations like the <a href="https://www.instagram.com/birdersfund/" target="_blank">Black & Latinx Birders Fund</a>, <a href="https://www.instagram.com/birdability/" target="_blank">Birdability</a>, and <a href="https://www.instagram.com/feministbirdclub/" target="_blank">Feminist Bird Club</a> highlight the contributions and importance of birders of color, birders with disabilities, and women and LGBTQ+ birders to the birding community, as do activists and naturalists like <a href="https://www.instagram.com/hood__naturalist/" target="_blank">Corina Newsome</a> and <a href="https://www.instagram.com/tykeejames/" target="_blank">Tykee James</a>. The work of <a href="https://www.audubon.org/news/its-bird-new-comic-written-central-park-birder-christian-cooper" target="_blank">Christian Cooper</a>, <a href="https://camilledungy.com/publications/" target="_blank">Camille Dungy</a> (read her poem <a href="https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poetrymagazine/poems/58363/frequently-asked-questions-10" target="_blank">Frequently Asked Questions: 10</a>), and <a href="https://orionmagazine.org/article/9-rules-for-the-black-birdwatcher/" target="_blank">J. Drew Lanham</a> – including his essay "<a href="https://lithub.com/birding-while-black/" target="_blank">Birding While Black</a>" – are a great place to start.</p><p>Getting involved in birding means educating ourselves on these issues and taking meaningful action; the work of <a href="https://www.audubon.org/news/its-bird-new-comic-written-central-park-birder-christian-cooper" target="_blank">Christian Cooper</a> and <a href="https://orionmagazine.org/article/9-rules-for-the-black-birdwatcher/" target="_blank">J. Drew Lanham</a> – including his essay "<a href="https://lithub.com/birding-while-black/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Birding While Black</a>" – are a great place to start. Just as birders are activists for protecting habitats and natural areas, we must also be active and aware of inclusivity in these spaces.</p>
9. Get Involved<p>To learn from and enjoy the company of other birders, check out local birding groups in your area to join. Many Audubon chapters host trips, meetings, and bird walks for members. The American Birding Association even maintains a <a href="https://www.aba.org/festivals-events/" target="_blank">directory of birding festivals</a> across the country.</p><p>Volunteering for birds is also a great way to meet other birders and take action for birds in your community; local organizations might have opportunities for assisting with habitat restoration or helping at birding centers.</p><p>Like all wildlife, climate change and habitat destruction threaten the livelihood of birds, eliminating their breeding grounds and food sources. A <a href="https://www.audubon.org/climate/survivalbydegrees" target="_blank">2019 report released by the National Audubon Society</a> found that two-thirds of North American birds may face extinction if global temperatures rise 5.4 degrees Fahrenheit by 2100. Staying informed about and taking action for legislation designed to protect birds and our climate – such as the recent <a href="https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/5552/text" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Migratory Bird Protection Act</a> – is important for ensuring a livable future for wildlife and humans alike.</p><p><em>Linnea graduated from Skidmore College in 2019 with a Bachelor's degree in English and Environmental Studies, and now lives in Brooklyn, New York. Most recently, Linnea worked at Hunger Free America, and has interned with WHYY in Philadelphia, Saratoga Living Magazine, and the Sierra Club in Washington, DC. </em><em>Linnea enjoys hiking and spending time outdoors, reading, practicing her German, and volunteering on farms and gardens and for environmental justice efforts in her community. Along with journalism, she is also an essayist and writer of creative nonfiction.</em></p>
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