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Youth Climate Action Summit A Success!

On Sunday October 2 we hosted the 2nd Annual Youth Climate Action Summit at Woodland Park Zoo and brought together over 100 Seattle-area youth and more than 20 climate focused community leaders. The full day event was organized and led by eleven teen leaders and zoo staff. The summit included 8 workshop sessions on climate science and action, an action fair in the beech grove with a range of community groups, and sustainability tours of the zoo. Check out full details on workshop topics and organization’s that participated here.

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Come to a CAN event

Seattle Youth CAN is all about taking action against climate change and creating a positive space for teens to come together on common passions. Throughout the year there will be monthly events open to any teen who wants to get involved. Come to an event to meet other teens, to have fun, and to learn how you can fight climate change! View events

Join the Seattle Youth Climate Action Network

Want to receive an email about upcoming Seattle Youth CAN or other local climate-related events? Join our mailing list for invitations to climate workshops, social events, advocacy opportunities, and more. Sign up here!

Encourage others to get involved

A great way to exponentially increase the impact of our actions is to spread the word! Tell your friends to be a part of the action. Share with them in person or on social media. We encourage you to share events and posts with friends and bring them to events! Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and our blog to keep up with what’s going on. Spread the word!

Fighting climate change one tree at a time

On February 11th, Seattle Youth CAN teamed up with Forterra, Green Seattle Partnership and Friends of the Burke Gilman to plant trees, pick up trash, and remove invasive species from a section of the Burke Gilman Trail. Of the 85 trees planted, 34 trees were purchased by Woodland Park Zoo as part of Forterra’s Evergreen Carbon Capture program. The 85 trees planted will sequester 425 tons of carbon over their lifetime.

Forterra’s Evergreen Carbon Capture program helps companies, organizations and individuals address the threats of global climate change by planting trees in the Puget Sound region. It began as a partnership with Pearl Jam, who wanted to take responsibility for their carbon emissions produced from their world tour by planting trees in their local community! Since then, the program has grown to include dozens of companies and individuals.

We asked participant Daniela Shuman to share her thoughts on the event:

The Burke-Gilman trail through North Seattle required our help. The area was full of trash, covered in the invasive black berry bushes, and missing trees. It’s a good thing Seattle Youth CAN were up for the job!

When we arrived, we went straight to the job, planting western red cedar, Douglas fir and grand fir. To ensure their best chance at surviving, we were taught how to effectively plant a tree. One important part was adding mulch around the newly planted tree to keep the moisture inside. After the hillside was covered in tiny trees, we were to go through and find any extra trash. It was sad to find so much, but we cleaned up the park well and ended up with bags of small pieces of plastic. Finishing up, we got rid of the invasive blackberry bushes. It was hard, but we eventually cleaned out a large area and freed a few trees that were wrapped in blackberry vines. Our motto was Free the Tree 2017! We were tired from the morning of work, but it was loads of fun to do with friends!

The importance to all this work was to restore part of the Seattle Area ecosystem. The hillside needed tree roots to avoid collapse and the stream needed shade to keep it cool for the living organisms inside. This event has made a lasting impact on our community ecosystem and I am proud to say I was part of it!

 

By Daniela Shuman

Addressing Climate Change from Multiple Perspectives

This past Tuesday, the UW hosted Global Challenges—Interdisciplinary Answers on Climate Change.

Here are some reflections on the event from Kathryn Fry, ZooCorps volunteer and Seattle Youth CAN leader:

Attending this event allowed me to reflect on my value judgments that I hold in regard to the topic of climate change. The interdisciplinary setting personally helped me understand how broad the topic of climate change is and how it isn’t just scientists who we should be looking to, but more so people of all backgrounds.  Overall the panel was very interesting and posed a lot of hard questions like “who gets to decide what matters”‘ and “how can we change the narrative?”.

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Fun at the Youth Climate Action Summit

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Two Sundays ago, on October 2nd, Seattle Youth CAN hosted our second annual Youth Climate Action Summit at Woodland Park Zoo. With over a hundred people registered the event was bigger then ever!  The morning started out with an inspirational introduction and performance from keynote speaker, Aji Piper. Followed by workshops, an art filled lunch, community groups tabling at an action fair, and sustainability tours the summit was full of endless fun things to see and do.   This year the summit went an hour longer and included many different things in its line up. A favorite of mine was the sustainability tours. I attended the Zoo Doo tour and got to meet Dr. Doo and his piles of compost. With interesting facts about how all that Zoo Doo gets made over the year it was a full ride of laughs and learning.

The summit while only in its second year has consistently proven to be a fun way to get teens motivated to make change in their communities and become more passionate about the climate and how it affects the world around them.

By Katherine Fry

 

About the author: Katherine has been on the summit planning committee the past 2 years, and is a ZooCorps volunteer/intern and senior at Chief Sealth International High School 

 

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Reflections on the Transportation Challenge

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Transportation is critical to each and every one of our lives. We have built our society in such a way that we expect people to get to places on time. With oncoming meetings in different places and other obligatory places to be, sometimes we don’t have the power to choose where to go. What we often forget, however, is that we do have the power to choose how we get there.

And that was the case in my life. The car used to be the only mode of transportation that I used or cared about. The thought of walking, biking, or busing never made it into me. I would reach for the car door handle before even realizing the consequences of my trip.

This is how SYCAN has transformed my life. I now bus, carpool, or walk everywhere I go. This transition was rough at first, so here are the steps that it took me to get there:
Start considering the idea that there are other modes of transportation besides the car. This step is the hardest, because it is so easy to always just take the car.
Gather a network of people who live near you. This will help especially when you need to find carpools.

Identify where the bus stops near you are. Often times they are closer than you think. If not, there are many videos on the internet about how to use bike racks!
Find convenient stores that are within walking and biking range.

These steps take less time than you would think and after completing them, it feels a lot better to know that taking personal action to have a positive impact on the environment is possible.

The Microsoft Interns have made a team that has dedicated itself to the transportation challenge that just wrapped up. For some, the bus has already been a part of their daily schedule, and the transportation challenge has been a seamless experience. However, for many others, it has been extremely hard step.

These steps above have helped me and members of the team through this challenge, and it has helped us win week five and six with the most total miles not driven alone!

Remember this: you no longer need a cape or a superhero mask to change the world. You just need a bus pass.

By Masayuki Nagase

Why “BUS IT?”

This week, you’ve been challenged by Seattle Youth CAN to post your busing adventures to #Bus4Me , but you may still be wondering why you should bus it this week. That’s why we at SYCAN has compiled the top 5 reasons to drop everything and get on a bus ASAP: (drumroll please…)

Why Bus It

1. You can sing The Wheels on the Bus song! Sometimes you just need to release your inner preschooler and although anytime is a good time to break out in song, being in a bus creates an ambiance that’ll give your performance that extra oomph.

2. Seattle Metro buses have either 46 or 57 seats; that means that when completely full, the smallest type of bus saves about 98% of the carbon emissions that would have been given off if all those people drove alone. That’s why busing massively shrinks your carbon footprint (and haven’t you always wished you could fit into those wicked light-up baby shoes?).

3. Being on a bus lets you be a Sneaky Spy. Isn’t awkward when you’re trying to take pictures of someone’s really cute pupper and their owner thinks you’re some creepy stalker? It’s okay to admit you have a dog-stalking problem, we do too, and acceptance is the first step to recovery. But why recover when you can just dog-stalk SNEAKILY? Lucky for you, buses have tinted windows! Plus, you don’t have to pull over to take out your phone.

4. Remember when your college counselor told you to do something for the community so you sprayed your brother with Febreze? Good effort, but we’re guessing that did more harm than good, right? Next time, try riding the bus instead! Busing ACTUALLY benefits the community and has a much smaller probability of ending with you grounded in a room that reeks of Fresh Twist Cranberry spray. The positive repercussions of busing are endless: it keep our cityscape smog-free, aides in weather-pattern regulation and protect the lifeways of local critters.

5. Last, but not least, busing lets you be a trend-setter! If the Pussycat Dolls’ “Famous” taught us anything, it’s that if you want people to talk about you, you have to set some trends. Based on what you’ve learned about busing, what could be better than a busing trend? Take artsy bus selfies, dig into the existential angst that a bus must feel on a daily and rope a few friends into busing downtown for Frappuccinos; congratulations- you’re well on your way to becoming a bus hipster!

So what are you doing still reading this? Go catch a bus! (And don’t forget to share your busing adventures to #Bus4Me to be entered to win some sick prizes)

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