Inspiring Action on Climate Change and Protecting America’s Birds

What can I do? That’s the question Audubon hears most frequently when people learn that there may be no Baltimore Orioles in Baltimore or Common Loons nesting in our northern states by the end of the century.

In a study based on decades of data, our scientists found that if climate change continues on its current trajectory, 314 U.S. and Canadian bird species — more than half of the 588 species studied — could lose 50 percent or more of their current ranges by the year 2080. Many could lose so much ground that, without urgent action, they could face extinction.

Our study is a road map for action, from simple steps anyone can take in their own backyard to speaking up about the future boundaries of national parks and collective efforts to address climate change.

So, when people ask me, “What can I do?” I tell them, here’s what’s working:

Young people are powerful agents of personal and collective change

Our kids get it. Birds don’t have a political party. This is not a Republican or a Democratic issue. It’s a bird issue. And young people know it’s their issue.

Young people were the messengers that led the anti-litter campaigns of the ’70s and the recycling efforts of the ’80s — all of which are part of mainstream culture today — and they did that without regard for political affiliation.

Audubon is engaging young people across America: Last week, teenagers lobbied state legislators for climate solutions in Washington. Through an Audubon program, middle school students are becoming community advocates in inner-city Baltimore neighborhoods. And in Madison, Wisconsin, students of all ages are training to become citizen scientists.

Citizen science is making climate change a more personal — and less political — issue

When people see change in their own communities, they get it. —> Read More