Anna Siegel (“Maine Voices: Recognizing the stakes, young people leading the fight for climate justice,” April 30) has the climate situation well analyzed. The most vulnerable to climate disruption are people with the least economic clout and the 27,000-plus species in imminent danger of extinction.

Elissa Armstrong took this photo in Lee County, Alabama, six days after a tornado that killed at least 23 people there. Scientists have hypothesized that climate change is having an impact on tornado activity. Photo by Elissa Armstrong

My husband and I had the distressingly sad experience of viewing the aftermath of the tornado that killed at least 23 people in Lee County, Alabama, in March. These were clearly not wealthy people; many did not even have telephones or internet.

Tornadoes happen, but scientists hypothesize that this particularly vicious one is attributable to a rush of polar air from the West and Northwest hitting unusually moist air from the warming Gulf of Mexico, symptoms of climate change. Maine is not immune from tornadoes. Remember the one that touched down at Sebago Lake? How about the Halloween windstorm of 2017?

Students from Portland-area schools, including the Friends School, which Anna attends, have been meeting occasionally to take action on climate change. They’re encouraging recycling at Portland High School, banning single-use plastic straws, working to reduce food waste, writing for Maine Voices and more. They get it that their future is at stake. It’s true that, as Anna puts it, “the movement that is sweeping youth around the world” is thriving here in Portland.

On May 4, SolaRISE, a consortium of Portland students, teachers, administrators and environmental activists, is having SunDay on Saturday to promote solarizing the Portland Public Schools. This is a step toward the city’s goal of 100 percent renewable energy for city buildings by 2040.

It’s also a valuable teaching experience as the students learn more about climate change, solar power, raising money and how to work with the city to reach sustainability.

Please support these young climate activists at a City Hall rally at 1 p.m. May 4 for SunDay on Saturday, and a march down to Deering Oaks for speeches and music.

Elissa Armstrong


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