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How Climate Change Affects Illinois

  • May 19, 2020 12:50 PM
    Message # 8979696
    Newenka DuMont (Administrator)

    Jewel Middle School, Aurora

  • May 19, 2020 3:32 PM
    Reply # 8980209 on 8979696
    Linda Zanieski (Administrator)

    I liked the focus on Illinois. It makes the issue more personal, rather than something that is happening in the world in general. Hopefully this leads to change right at home.

  • May 29, 2020 12:41 PM
    Reply # 9001211 on 8979696
    Lisa Albrecht

      I thoroughly enjoyed this presentation.  The narration is very powerful and incredibly articulate as is the pace, emotion and vocal range. It was clearly scripted without sounding like it was being read and obviously well-rehearsed.  In particular, the opening statement is clear, concise and compelling to the listener to get engaged and emotionally pulled together at the end in the conclusion.  Well done ensuring the importance of the topic is undeniable and clearly expressed.

      I’ll tackle the rest by sections: 

      Heatwaves & droughts – the differences were clearly explained and the cause/effect well defined.

      • Extreme heat days – was the chart showing the state of IL also from 1995?  It’s important to be sure to reference time frames when presenting data that represents either a point in time or a trend. This puts the research in context for the listener and also shows expertise by the presenter. I assume it corresponded to the previous slide but that was not clear. Without a reference data can appear to be cherry picked which weakens your message. 
      • One degree warmer per century – an important trend but there wasn’t a stated conclusion, just the data point given.  Draw the listener to why this fact is important. For example – it is the trend that is dangerous and will cause further global disruption. 

      Health – this section was also very strong but needed a few more visuals.

      • “How Our Health is Impacted”  Because you are making a transition from one topic (heat) to another (health) I’d recommend posing your statement as such.  For example, I would title the slide “Our Health is Impacted” which is the point you are trying to make. It’s a small distinction but from a story telling perspective, taking that small step backward helps bring the audience forward. Just adding the word “How” changes the meaning just slightly and is an abrupt jump for the viewer.  Tell your listener what you are going to tell them and then prove your point. 
      • Add some slides to improve the experience for your audience.  For example, you discuss the following topics all while the map of the spread of ticks and mosquitos is showing:
      • Heat Stroke & Heat Exhaustion
      • Flooding causes mold growth in buildings reducing air quality
      • Mosquitos and ticks
      • Air quality issues and respiratory disease
      • Ozone pollution leads to lung and heart problems

      All of these are incredibly strong and compelling arguments and you can reinforce that with visuals that help tell the story.  When the narrative and the visual don’t match, viewers have a cognitive problem that stops their listening and learning.  

      • Mental health issues: this was an excellent point that is often left out of climate discussions. Well done for including it here and well positioned in your presentation.

      The conclusion was strong but I think you can restate your position a bit more directly by saying A causes B and is a problem.

      The solutions are great but again, another slide here would be good since this is not your conclusion but actually a resolution to the problem you’ve presented.  You’ve given the audience action they can take – hit them in the head with it by having a slide with that as the title.  😊

      Again, well done!  I would have loved to hear the voice from others on the team but assume that they may have been too shy to do so, understandable.  But a chorus of voices subconsciously tells the listener that the argument is not one persons but many.  The phrase “strength in numbers” applies in that way.  Very strong presentation. Impressive.

  • May 29, 2020 3:23 PM
    Reply # 9001642 on 8979696
    Melissa Brice, 350 Chicago

    Hello Lillian, Ben, and Nevaeh,

    Great presentation on how climate change affects IL!  I especially liked the graphs and images to back up your findings.  

    Thank you for the wonderful individual actions people can do to help with climate change!  I wanted to propose two solutions that work on a larger-scale collaborative effort.  We need to stop burning fossil fuels to prevent catastrophic climate change.  Illinois has legislation in the Clean Energy Jobs Act that we need to pass to move to renewable energy in our state.  You can ask residents of IL to call their legislators and demand they pass the bills!

    Communities can also come together to get their cities to transition to 100% renewable energy by starting a local Ready for 100 campaign!  We need every location, big and small, to transition to renewable energy.

    Hope these ideas help!  Let me know if you have any questions.

    Melissa Brice

  • May 29, 2020 4:48 PM
    Reply # 9001870 on 8979696
    Cathi White, 350 Chicago and Go Green Skokie

    Lillian, Ben and Nevaeh,

    Beautiful, finished presentation, including smooth narration from well-composed text! I liked that each slide was crisply reproduced, with sources included right on each one.

    I got a little confused when the slides didn't match the narration, as with the health discussion that featured only the tick image. I also wanted explanations where sometimes you expected me to guess your point. Example: Why is significant that we've gained 1 degree Fahrenheit per century? Why start the graph in 1895? Why not 1632 or 1060?

    You also mentioned a "connection" between air quality and mental health. There's another word you might want to look up to consider for future use, and that is "correlation." Correlation does not equal causation. However, it is a useful mathematical relationship that can be shown on a graph.

    Suggestions for further investigation:

    •What kinds of activities and buildings exist in those red areas of the IL map showing annual days of excessive heat? Are they really industrial areas? Might they be large cities where there's an urban heat island effect? Might they be areas where there used to be native prairies or wetlands -- both of which hold water and create rich soil -- but were destroyed by farmland?
    •Frost-free is not necessarily good. What benefits do cold winters offer farmers in the way of controlling insects and disease?
    •Other effects of climate change in IL: flooding, shoreline loss, algae blooms, water quality and quantity
    •Other ideas to help here in IL: 
    -join a local advocacy group like or
    -walk or bike instead of drive
    -check out
    -for lunch containers, check out waxed cloths, bento boxes or

    Hope to see you presenting in person another time!

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