13: Climate Action
Taking Action on Climate Change
You are a part of a global effort to increase access to education and empower students through “open pedagogy.” Open pedagogy is a “free access” educational practice that places you – the student – at the center of your own learning process in a more engaging, collaborative learning environment. The ultimate purpose of this effort is to achieve greater social justice in our community in which the work can be freely shared with the broader community. This is a renewable assignment that is designed to enable you to become an agent of change in your community through the framework of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). For this work, you will integrate the disciplines of Biology to achieve SDG #13: Climate Action
Identify policies to fight climate change.
This will be your second assignment on the topic of the UN Sustainable Development Goal #13: Climate Action. In your first assignment, you identified one factor for which societal change is needed to help fight climate change (agriculture, transportation, or energy). In this assignment you will identify a policy that can be implemented to create change for your chosen factor. Then you will write a letter or make a video directed at a decision maker in which you advocate for the policy you have identified.
Part 1. Policy research
Use the internet and/or library databases to identify some proposed governmental policies related to your chosen climate factor that could have a positive impact on climate change. For example, if you chose agriculture, look for laws that have been proposed to make agriculture more sustainable. The policies could be at any level from your city to your state to the federal government.
Choose one policy from those that you researched that you support and would like to see implemented. Identify a group of decision makers that you would need to convince to vote for this policy. For example, if your policy is about a local city issue, you would likely need to persuade your city council. If it is a nationwide policy, you would need to target the U.S. Senate or House of Representatives.
Now find the person who represents you at the appropriate level of government:
● If you’re advocating for a policy at the federal or state level, search the 270toWin website to find the contact information for your members of Congress or state representatives. Make sure you select the correct level of government using the checkmarks below the map.
● If you’re advocating for a policy at the city government level, you’ll need to do a general internet search to find the contact information for your city council members.
Part 2. Advocate for your chosen policy
Now that you’ve identified a policy and a decision maker to target, you will write a letter or create a video trying to persuade the decision maker to adopt this policy. The body of the letter will need to be at least 300 words. The video will be in the form of public comments made at a government meeting and will need to be 2-3 minutes long.
Follow these directions if you’re writing a letter:
1. Use this sample letter as a guide for how to write your letter.
2. Keep the tone of the letter civil and polite.
3. Address the letter to your chosen decision maker.
4. Write one paragraph introducing yourself and explaining why you are concerned about this issue.
5. Write one paragraph explaining the facts that support your position. Think about the things you included in your infographic on this topic. In this paragraph you should explain why your chosen factor (agriculture, transportation, or energy) plays a role in climate change.
6. Write one or more paragraphs providing three reasons why the decision maker should support the policy you have chosen.
7. End the letter with “Sincerely,” and your name.
Follow these directions if you’re creating a video:
1. Use this video as a guide for how to give public comments at a government meeting.
2. Record your video using any software you prefer. On Windows, you can use the Camera app. On Mac, you can use QuickTime. On your phone, you can use the built-in camera app.
3. Address the decision maker as if you were speaking to him or her at a public meeting. Be polite and civil.
4. Introduce yourself and explaining why you are concerned about this issue.
5. Spend a minute or so explaining the facts that support your position. Think about the things you included in your infographic on this topic. In this portion you should explain why your chosen factor (agriculture, transportation, or energy) plays a role in climate change.
6. Spend at least one minute providing three reasons why the decision maker should support the policy you have chosen.
7. Conclude the video by thanking the decision maker for their time.