Tuesday, October 30, 2012

By Popular Request

SETF had T-shirts printed commemorating our successful campaign to stop the Chicago Police Department from building an outdoor firing range adjacent to the Whitford and O'Brien Ponds.  The design was a collaborative effort with original art work taken from a paper cutting done by Susan Degrane, a member of our organization and a quote from Carolyn Marsh, another SETF member.  Printed originally for our Board Members to wear at our September fundraiser, we decided to sell the remainder once we discovered people were interested in purchasing them.  Find below a picture of the T-shirt that comes in men's medium or large.

If you would like to purchase one of our very cool T-shirts, you may not want to hesitate as we only  only 6 left.

You can purchase a T-shirt one of two ways: by using the handy PayPal feature provided or by stopping by our office.

Please select size

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Climate Change Disbelievers

Frontline documentary on those reversing the belief in Climate Change.  Watch in preparation for our presentation on November 11th.


Thursday, October 18, 2012

Fracking Coming to Southern Illinois

It is important to be aware of what is going on in our city, our state and our country.  Hydrofracturing or "fracking" as its known, is coming to Southern Illinois amid much controversy.  If you don't know the issue, you can learn by clicking on this short video:

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


From today's NWI Times

Lower lake levels could hurt region, industry

Climate change is expected to drop water levels in the Great Lakes, affecting industry and the region.

Levels could drop anywhere from a few inches to several feet as water evaporates in the drought conditions, experts said Wednesday.

Extreme weather will become more commonplace. Heat waves will be more severe. Drought will be more frequent, said Don Wuebbles, professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Illinois.

Those are local impacts of climate change that are already occurring, Wuebbles said,
Even the 46 percent increase in extreme rainfall in the last 50 years won't overcome diminishing Great Lakes levels, said Wuebbles, who is co-authoring the long-awaited 2013 report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

In short, the climate is changing, and the only logical explanation for this change is human activity, said Wuebbles, who shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with the IPCC and Al Gore for their work on climate change.

"We're going to have to learn to adapt to climate change," Wuebbles said during the panel discussion "Great Lakes Water Scarcity and Regional Economic Development" at Northwestern University's Chicago campus.

Panelists agreed that the Great Lakes region would be hard hit if more isn't done about climate change. This year, the region and most of the country has experienced record heat, which has led to evaporation.

In Chicago, millions of people rely on Lake Michigan water. And suburbs strapped with declining well water supplies may be hard-pressed to link to declining lake supplies.

Panelists emphasized that the effects of climate change stretch well beyond the Midwest. The Great Lakes hold roughly 20 percent of the world's freshwater supply.

Cameron Davis, senior adviser to the administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, said lower water levels already are affecting fishing, shipping and tourism.

When industry is impacted, it hurts the entire region. Davis said the Great Lakes support 1.5 million jobs and account for $62 billion in wages.

"To this region, water is everything," he said. "Water is our life."

When any of these lakes see a drop in water level, the ramifications are felt across the globe, said David Ullrich, executive director of the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Cities Initiative.

Even though climate change is a global problem, Ullrich said it should be dealt with at the municipal level. Cities need to develop ways to reduce water consumption and do a better job of protecting their water resources and coastal areas.

Regional governments have hammered out a number of compacts and agreements related to climate change, but the process has been hindered by a lack of specific goals, targets and timelines, Ullrich said.

Wuebbles said the potential impacts of climate change are so great the problem has to be taken seriously. The cost of doing something about climate change is small, he said, compared to the potential risks.

"It's how much humanity decides we're going to go," Wuebbles said.

Wednesday's panel discussion was sponsored by the Initiative for Sustainability and Energy at Northwestern, the Midwest Energy and Sustainability Leadership Alliance, Argonne National Laboratory and the Shedd Aquarium.


Thursday, October 4, 2012

Green Energy Forum October 10th, 2012

Now that Leucadia is no longer an issue of concern for the residents of the Southeast side, SETF, along with their EJ Alliance partners is planning to investigate better alternatives. Contrary to what some people believe, we support new development for the area.  Because the 10th ward has some of the largest tracts of vacant land it is key  to providing jobs, taxes and development opportunities for the city. But we want to see a comprehensive plan of sustainable development and not this piece meal approach that has been taken thus far. With the large number of contiguous acres of land available, opportunity exists for innovative thinking to be applied to produce a plan for an Eco-industrial park that would be an asset to our community and a model for the rest of the country.

To find out how you can help direct this effort and to learn more about what opportunities might exist, come to our Community Forum on October 10th at the Zone. 

Couldn't Have Asked for a Lovelier Evening

Last Saturday, SETF went unplugged for the evening and invited our members to join us. We met at Calumet Park by the boat dock for an evening of relaxation and conversation. Sitting around the fire, in the peacefulness of the evening, with only the sound of leaves rustling in the breeze, and the waves lapping the shore  it was easy to forget we were in the city. The huge harvest moon suspended over the lake was a sight to see.  It's a little known secret that Calumet Park is all but empty at this time of the year and unlike the congested north side lakefront, a joy to be at.

Sipping warm drinks and snacking on goodies, the group engaged in easy conversation, sharing humorous stories and commenting on our state of affairs.  As the evening wore on, and the temperature dipped a  more, we huddled closer to the fire.  Originally scheduled to end at 9:00 PM ( the assumption being that people would not be able to survive longer without access to their cell phones) we ended up extending  the time until 11:30 PM when the appearance of a police car made it clear it was time to pack up and go.

SETF thanks everyone who came out.  And we hope to accommodate requests to do it again.

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