Fall is always a transition time, sandwiched between the languid days of summer and the blurred race of the winter holidays. Our team at C-Change is already off to the races, and our days are blurring by. We’re back on the road doing live presentations, creating videos, showcasing new products, accessing new audiences, and winning new awards.
Why do we do this hard work? Because we know collectively we are all in a race – to come together to slow and manage climate change before it overwhelms us. The race starts right here in our home communities and across our broad and diverse country. And it starts by engaging others who do not understand the risk and inviting them to be part of the solution. Without broad public understanding of the scope and severity of the risk, we cannot have the public will to support action, and we cannot win this race.
Getting back on the road has been exhausting, but so validating. We are reaching discerning and skeptical audiences with tremendous success, from western Pennsylvania to North Carolina to Missouri and Minnesota. The unique way we frame the issue, and our inclusive tone and manner, are opening hearts and minds.
Thank you for your continued interest and support.
Founder & President
C-Change Addresses Land Stewards for 2nd Consecutive Year
In early October, C-Change was honored to appear at Rally 2021, an annual land conservation conference hosted by the Land Trust Alliance (LTA). The organization is a national leader in policy, standards, education, and training for the land trust community.
Kathleen Biggins and Sophie Glovier presented “Storms and Floods: Talking to Conservatives about Water and Climate” to about 130 members of this influential audience. Land trustees are especially concerned about the byproducts of climate change such as flooding and subsequent polluted run-off and are uniquely positioned to initiate and sustain conversations about their concerns with members of their community.
The presentation focused on the health risks of climate change – especially our access to clean water − and how proven remediation efforts are making a difference. Jim Waltman, executive director of The Watershed Institute, a New Jersey organization of advocates, scientists, and educators helping keep water clean, safe, and healthy, introduced Kathleen and Sophie in the recorded presentation. Kathleen, the founder and president of C-Change, and Sophie, the Watershed’s assistant director of policy and a C-Change team member, answered questions from a live audience following the presentation. This was the second consecutive year C-Change has been invited to present at the LTA conference.
Biggins Delivers Primer to CEOs at 7-State Business Leadership Conference
Also in early October, Kathleen Biggins joined other distinguished speakers and attendees from seven southeastern states at the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) Southern 7 Gold Chapter Conference in Linville, NC. YPO is a global network and leadership organization for young chief executives and business owners. Kathleen, founder and president of C-Change Conversations, delivered the Primer in person to about 100 YPO members. With at least several climate skeptics in the audience, it was gratifying that many people approached her after the presentation to say they understood the issue better and wanted to learn more.
Award-Winning Website Has Our Name on It!
The C-Change Conversations website, designed by Howard Design Group, was honored with a Silver award in this year’s w3 Awards, winning for “Best Visual Appeal” and “Best Experience.” Congratulations to Jo Singer and the talented team at Howard, and C-Change team members Pam Parsons and Carrie Dyckman, who led the project for us. And thank you!
To Your Health? New Presentation is Sobering but Hopeful
The Health Primer is a new extension of our mission to deliver science-based, non-partisan climate change education. It focuses on how climate change will impact our ability to stay healthy and safe and what we can do about it. Covering the dire health effects of higher temperatures – including threats to our personal safety, food security, ability to manage diseases, air quality, and access to clean water − the Health Primer also explores how to innovate, mitigate, and adapt to a changing climate.
Like the original Primer, it is non-partisan, has powerful visuals, and is based on science from trusted sources. The Health Primer was well-received during several August and September presentations. Please contact Kathy Herring if you would like to learn more and explore booking the Health Primer for your group.
Oncologists Sound the Alarm on Climate Change and Air Pollution
Did you know that air pollution is the second leading cause of lung cancers worldwide? And that air pollution and climate change are closely related? Turns out that not enough health care providers know this either. That’s why Drs. Christine Berg and Joan Schiller – both ardent supporters of the C-Change mission and contributors to our Health Primer – are reaching out to their peers in the medical community and others about how climate change and air pollution impact our health.
On September 7th, C-Change published Joan’s blog, “Two Sides of the Same Coin: Air Pollution and Climate Change.“ Joan also is a trained presenter of the C-Change Primer.
The same week, Christine virtually presented their joint air pollution/lung cancer research at the most well-attended session of the 2021 World Conference on Lung Cancer. The two oncologists found that five European countries − Serbia, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Bosnia/Herzegovina, and Poland − had the highest number of lung cancers due to air pollution among those aged 50 to 69. The correlation between burning coal and lung cancer in these countries is clear: Serbia derives 70% of its energy production from coal and Poland, 64%.
Thank you, Christine and Joan, for all you are doing to educate audiences about health risks tied to greenhouse gas emissions and a warming climate.
In-Person Primers Are Back!
Throughout the summer and fall, our team is continuing to deliver the Primer primarily to conservative and moderate audiences, and, gratefully, in person. For example, Nancy Ylvisaker presented the Primer in St. Louis to nearly 80 engineers through the American Public Works Association. Right before Labor Day, Kathleen Biggins delivered the Primer to three audiences (Linville Book Club, Blowing Rock Country Club, and The Grandfather Mountain Club) in the North Carolina mountains. Response was so positive she received invitations from audience members to present in their home cities of Durham, Charlotte, Birmingham, AL, and Vero Beach, FL. Last week, she flew to Minnesota to present to about 90 guests of the Woodhill Country Club on Wednesday and delivered the Primer presentation again the next day to the Minnetonka Garden Club.
Dallas Hetherington presented to members of the Four Seasons 55+ community in Warren, NJ and to about 70 people at the Rolling Rock Club, near Pittsburgh, PA. Dallas shared some of the feedback he received after the latter presentation from Simin Yazdgerdi Curtis, president & CEO of Pittsburgh’s American Middle East Institute. Simin said, “I have never heard (nor seen) such a comprehensive, visually powerful talk about Climate Change as I witnessed from you last night. The extent of the warming of our planet − with such shocking animated graphics − could not have been better conveyed than by your calm, articulate, ‘just the facts, ma’am’ delivery. In short, you are a great communicator and are engaged in an important mission.”
This receptivity mirrors our experience before COVID shut down in-person presentations, and it is reaffirming to see that our audiences value our content and approach.
Sold Out Benefit Supports the C-Change Mission
Our first large benefit, “Wine in the Time of Climate Change,” was a wonderful success. Sipping wine on a beautiful September evening, about 70 new and long-time friends and supporters enjoyed wine and spirits entrepreneur Mark Censits’ informative presentation about how winemakers are adapting to a changing climate and where we can find good wines in the future.
We are incredibly grateful to our sponsors − CoolVines, Otherwise Engaged Events, Skurnik Wines and Spirits, Terhune Orchards, and The Watershed Institute; our partner, Almora Advisors; and the amazing, hard-working C-Change volunteers.
Speaking of which, C-Change Conversations is a non-profit organization, run entirely by volunteers. We hope you will consider supporting us, especially on Giving Tuesday (November 30th) and through our year-end appeal. Please watch your email for these special opportunities to help us reach more people with non-partisan, science-based facts and a hopeful message about climate change.
Meet the Team
Sometimes you meet someone who is so interesting and articulate that time accelerates when you are with them. You look up and hours have passed when it felt like only minutes. Margaret Koval is one of those people. An Emmy-winning journalist with a broad range of interests and knowledge, and an accomplished artist who has lived abroad and travels widely, she always brings a fresh and insightful perspective.
We met when Margaret interviewed me for the “She Roars” podcast at Princeton University in which she showcased the school’s female graduates and professors who are making a difference in the world. We have several team members who are Princeton alumnae, and we were honored to have our C-Change story be included. When we decided to create a monthly newsletter curating climate news for our C-Change family, I immediately asked Margaret to come on board to help us write it, and to our collective delight, she agreed. Every month we wrestle with selecting news of hope and news of concern, including insightful quotes and engaging videos, and then Margaret adds her magic and weaves the story together. Take a look.
Why I’m involved with C-Change: I joined C-Change because it fills an incredibly important gap in the firehose of communications around the issue of climate change. It focuses on people who are unsure what stance to take and recognizes that most are busy, skeptical thinkers who welcome non-partisan information that is digestible without a PhD in atmospheric science. C-Change also appreciates the importance of economics, business, and jobs – not as part of the problem but as central to any real solution to global warming.
What have you learned about climate change that makes you hopeful? In the last few years, I’ve been deeply encouraged to meet many of the researchers and businesspeople working furiously on the issue of climate change. The biggest blast of hope for me came from a Princeton University study that mapped out five different ‘pathways’ to transform the U.S. energy sector – any one of them could achieve net zero greenhouse gases and go a long way to stop global warming. All of them would result in MORE jobs, more economic opportunity, and better human health compared to doing nothing.
C-Change in the News
TapintoPrinceton, an online community news source, provided wonderful exposure for C-Change in “If you think the weather’s wacky, a neighbor can probably explain.” We are so grateful to Richard Rein and Princeton, NJ-area journalists for sharing our story and encouraging more people to support our mission.
Do you know of other news outlets that would be interested in our story of a band of volunteers who offer non-partisan climate education and are opening minds and building consensus about climate change − one individual, one community, one conversation at a time? If so, please contact Kathleen Biggins with ideas for reaching more people with our message through print, broadcast, and online news sources. Thank you!