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Becoming People Who Breathe Cleaner Air

Never again will I take fresh, breathable air for granted. The relentless fires along America’s West Coast serve as another reminder of how interwoven we are on this planet. When the rain finally came to clear out the air here in Portland, I could also think more clearly about my “Reframing the Apocalypse” post from last week. It motivated me to direct my energy toward supporting two top-rated organizations: Americares and The Union of Concerned Scientists.

Americares is meeting the suffering on the West Coast head-on: They are sending medicine, truckloads of drinking water, and cash to those who have been displaced. With the coronavirus compounding the issue of basic health care, Americares is also supplying PPE to medical workers who are experiencing a dramatic increase in patients. During the wildfire crisis especially, all these things are crucial, life-saving support. And as of this writing, donations to Americares are being doubled:

While many factors cause the wildfires, there is no denying that global warming, or climate change if you prefer, is fueling the problem. Heat and drier air create larger swaths of forest “kindling” for longer periods of time. The Union of Concerned Scientists explains it much better than I can, and I am thrilled to support their efforts. The UCS organization is science-based and solutions-oriented, dedicated to creating a “healthy, safe and sustainable future” for us all:

As we continue to battle the fires on the West Coast, even as hurricanes churn on the East Coast, let it inspire us to come together in caring for our planet. What we do (or don’t do) will determine our future. I welcome you to join me in supporting two outstanding organizations working to solve the problem from different angles. Whether it’s with financial resources or other forms of advocacy (or both!) challenge yourself to actively help us become people who breathe cleaner air.

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