Our planet requires us to be good stewards for our future. There are steps we can take locally to preserve our environment, including our air, our water, and our beaches.
We have one planet and we have delayed far too long in taking appropriate actions. Every single one of us can do something to make a positive impact.
What Can We Do?
- Save our shoreline. Our beaches are part of what makes Rogers Park so special. Yet, in recent years, we have been watching helplessly as our shoreline erodes, our beaches disappear, and people’s homes are threatened by rising waters. We must take action now and prioritize the preservation of our shoreline. These actions include putting additional pressure on federal, state, and local government to budget for comprehensive research studies and action plans. It is also imperative that we take civic action and work together as a community with local organizations to help slow the erosion of our beachfront and protect the people who live there.
- Build ahead. Establish minimum requirements for future developments that include energy efficiencies, wherever possible, including:
- electric vehicle charging stations when parking is included in the proposal
- increased utilization of solar energy
- accommodation of renewable energy amenities
- Federal, state, and local grant opportunities to incentivize property owners
- improvements to bike safety, bike lanes, and community education about energy efficient transportation
- Invest in urban farming opportunities. Climate change is expected to have a dramatic effect on our food supply. This presents an opportunity to make investments in controlled environment agriculture. Imagine if we could have vertical gardening containers in Rogers Park that supplied food for our farmers market and our local restaurants. Local non profits, like A Just Harvest, could benefit from these efforts.
- Create job training and job growth opportunities in environmental sustainability. By prioritizing these actions today, we can actually be creating careers for our residents. We can train new electricians in solar energy, and the installation of solar panels and house batteries. We can train agricultural workers in modern urban farming techniques. These are going to be the highly skilled, high-demand jobs of the future. Creating additional, stable, well-paid employment opportunities will also address our housing affordability problem, reduce crime, and improve community safety. These are the big investments we need to be making in our people, our neighborhood, and our planet. This is achievable if we work together and start building out our plans today.