What Does Climate Change Look Like To You?

What Image Do You See?

Like Rosa and Rocky, many of us conjure thoughts of distant and abstract futures being affected or remote parts of the world changed by climate change. We may not realize the damages that are happening every day all around us. Have you ever heard the analogy of the frog and boiling water? The story goes, if you put a frog in boiling water, he will jump to save himself immediately. But if you put the frog in cool water and slowly raise the temperature to boiling, the frog will remain until it’s too late. Climate change is a similar situation, the water is simmering.

The Effects of Climate Change Now

Everyday, people and communities in the United States and around the world are feeling the effects of climate change right now, even in Illinois. Weather patterns are being affected by global warming, which has increased the intensity, frequency and duration of hurricanes, heat waves, wildfires, and winter storms more than ever before. These natural disasters disproportionately affect lower-income and minority communities not financially able to rebuild after an event like this. Alongside this danger, the pollution and smog created from coal and industrial plants are a greater health risk to the surrounding neighborhoods which are home to primarily minority residents. Global residents are feeling the current effects of climate change, which is why it’s past time to change the image of climate change.

People for Community Recovery

A non-profit organization originating from Southside Chicago, People for Community Recovery, is on a mission to raise awareness and inspire change. “For over 40 years, PCR has worked under demanding conditions to advance the cause of social and environmental justice. PCR’s mission is to enhance the quality of life of residents living in communities affected by pollution.” From community outreach, youth programs, environmental awareness programs to economic development programs, they are striving to help people who are most significantly affected by the ravages of human-made climate change in Chicago. Minorities and low-income families are the hardest hit when it comes to extreme weather disasters, pollution, and health crises. 

If you are interested in helping fellow residents of the greater Chicago area make lasting changes, then teaming up with the People for Community Recovery is the way to go. Visit their website to learn more. 
You can also learn more about environmental justice via the Environmental Law and Policy Center at ELPC.org.