Madison Featured as a Climate-Change Haven
Posted on Friday, Jan. 29, 2021 at 2:08 pm
I was honored to welcome the crew from CBS Sunday morning to do a feature on the City of Madison for their segment on the ‘almost perfect’ places to live while avoiding the worsening extremes of climate change. You can watch the segment by clicking here.
Correspondent David Pogue came to tour our City. He recently wrote the book “How to Prepare for Climate Change” which looks at the migration – already happening now – due to climate change. The segment starts with the example of a family from Paradise, CA who moved to Burlington, VT after losing their home and belongings to the devastating Camp Fire in 2018.
Madison was selected to be featured on the show as one of the cities in the Great Lakes region that is best suited to weather the impacts of climate change. I took David to Tenney Park with its ice covered lagoons; we also strolled down Monroe Street and took a bird’s eye view from the top of the Madison Municipal Building where one of the City’s solar arrays is located. The City is on track to produce 1 megawatt of solar power and be 100 percent renewable by 2030.
With no hurricanes, no wildfires, no sea level rise, no extreme heat waves, and plenty of fresh water – Madison is an ideal location to avoid the greatest impacts from climate change. Even Rolling Stone has identified Madison as a winner when looking at our climate, economy and infrastructure.
However, we here are not immune to the effects of climate change. From the Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts (WICCI) report submitted to the Governor’s Task Force on Climate Change this past summer “Wisconsin has become 2.1oF warmer since the 1950s, with winters warming more rapidly than summer.” In fact, we filmed the CBS Sunday Morning segment during an above freezing day in January. And of course we all saw the devastating impacts of climate change in the form of flooding several years ago, and have experience summer heat waves.
We also know that climate change has a disproportionately negative impact on communities of color disproportionately hard. And that is why our work here is not done – we must keep working to be a more equitable and resilient community for all Madisonians.