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The Glencoe Anchor 021617

10 | February 16, 2017 |

10 | February 16, 2017 | The glencoe anchor news glencoeanchor.com Local organizations co-sponsor screening of climate change doc ‘Before the Flood’ showing inspires viewers to think about environment Danielle Gensburg Freelance Reporter From extreme weather patterns and scarce resources to devastated ecosystems, climate change is happening and having a very real impact on communities around the world. In “Before the Flood,” a new documentary on climate change produced by Academy Award-winning actor, environmental activist Leonardo DiCaprio, climate change is shown as a problem that can be solved today if people choose to take action. Local advocacy organizations Go Green Glencoe and Grab the Wheel cosponsored a screening of the film Feb. 1 at Glencoe Union Church, allowing “You realize, especially in this very tumultuous political time, you really need to double down on something.” Lisa Fremont—Glencoe resident on tackling climate change through various advocacy efforts residents from Glencoe and surrounding communities to learn about the realities of climate change. Margie Kelly, strategic communications manager for the National Resources Defense Council, led a discussion about the film. Founded in 1970, the National Resources Defense Council is a nonprofit environmental organization made up of lawyers, scientists, policy advocates and more than 2 million members who advocate and work to protect the planet and its ecosystems. Faith in Place, Go Green Glencoe, Grab the wheel and Citizens’ Climate Lobby were some of the other nonprofit groups (in addition to the National Resources Defense Council) that attended the free film showing and set up booths with leaflets of information about their organizations. “We came here at the invitation of these community groups to show the film ‘Before the Flood’ with Leonardo DiCaprio and have a conversation in the community about how people were feeling about the environment, what they felt they could do and to give them some information and tips about how they can become more engaged,” Kelly said. The documentary follows DiCaprio and his team on a journey around the world to witness the effects of climate change firsthand. “I’ve always thought that it was something that everybody should be concerned about, and I just wanted to see if I could learn anything new from the movie and meet like-minded people in the community,” Glencoe resident Aparna Jain said. Jain said she did not know about some of the statistics mentioned in the film, as well as the rate with which climate change is happening. “Sometimes it’s great to see [the effects of climate change] visualized in one place,” Jain said. Miranda Dotson, a Highland Park resident, said she has seen similar films before, but was glad she came out. “I’ve seen films like this before, so I didn’t expect to hear anything new from this, but I’m very glad that I came out tonight because just the visuals and the dialogue that Leonardo DiCaprio was having with various leaders and various people from all different walks of life was impactful,” Dotson said. “Coming from Chicago and being from a place where we have abundant resources is so rare given the script of how the rest of the world is, so it’s a reminder that I need to continue doing work.” Glencoe resident Linn Donaldson said people sometimes resist learning about climate change. “The reality is really important, and there are things we can do about it,” Donaldson said. “It’s important that we don’t just throw up our hands and hide under the bed.” Glencoe resident Lisa Fremont, a member of the Village’s Sustainability Task Force, said she was inspired by the film to make a difference. “You realize, especially in this very tumultuous political time, you really need to double down on something,” she said. “Watching the movie, it made me re-energized to do that. Seeing it and coming here tonight made me think you have to really focus on something and really put a lot of energy into it. I don’t know if I really learned anything new, but it was a new way of looking at it that opened my eyes a little bit more. It’s very sad.” Susana Figueroa, outreach director of Faith in Place in Lake County, an organization whose mission is to inspire faith in people of all religious denominations to take action and care for the earth, said that she was very aware of the problems related to climate change and that the film reaffirmed to her how important it is to connect with people and raise awareness about environmental issues. “A lot of people don’t know how important for us it is to take action,” she said. “And some people don’t know where to begin but just doing simple steps like reducing the energy that you’re using at home or getting children outdoors more or composting ... those little things that all of us can be doing make a difference.” Kelly agreed that even doing small things, like changing your light bulb and keeping your tires pumped full of air, can help by making people less dependent on overconsumption. She said being aware is a huge part of making a change. “I didn’t realize the impact of meat was so significant on energy issues,” Kelly said. “Awareness is a huge part of it. I guess the most important takeaway from the film is to do something. Pick what it is. It doesn’t have to be one size fits all. Do the thing that matters to you. Do something that’s meaningful and inspires your friends and family, communities and churches to also take action and stop denying that it’s true.” Plants of the North Shore Plants of Concern manager talks natural spaces Alexandra greenwald Freelance Reporter Rachel Goad, manager of Chicago Botanic Garden’s program Plants of Concern, addressed Friends of the Green Bay Trail members and area residents Thursday, Feb. 9, at the Takiff Center. The talk was co-sponsored by the Glencoe Park District. Plants of Concern operates in 15 counties across northeastern Illinois and northwestern Indiana to monitor populations of rare and endangered native plants. The group trains volunteer “citizenscientists” to find, monitor and count these populations. This data is used to study long-term trends and develop management techniques to encourage rare plant survival. Friends of the Green Bay Trail board member Eileen Sirkin said that while the Friends’ work is focused on restoration rather than preservation of rare plants, she sees a connection between their work. “She’s going out into areas that are still the way God wanted them to be, the way they should be, and she’s trying to protect them,” Sirkin said. “We have an area that was totally trashy plants and trash, literally,” board member Jo Ann Kimzie said. “So we’ve removed all that and we’ve put in pretty common plants, really. Whatever’s native [to the area].”

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