November 15, 2009

Racine gets a voice at international climate change negotiations

Racine will have a representative in Copenhagen, Denmark next month when global leaders gather to discuss an international climate change treaty.

Jamie Racine, who lives in Racine, will attend the COP15 United Nations Climate Change Conference as the Midwestern Youth Delegate to the meetings, which may result in a new treaty to control carbon emissions on the planet.

Racine is one of 10 delegates from the Midwest and two from Wisconsin to attend COP15. The international youth delegation - about 1,000 members from around the world - is a recognized body by the United Nations. The designation gives Racine and her peers access to the negotiations on the new climate change treaty. They'll have space on agendas, offer position papers and, hopefully, get the attention of heads of states from around the world.

Racine's job is to represent the Midwest, which plays a significant role in any climate change discussions.

If the Midwest was its own country, it would be the fourth highest polluting nation in the world, Racine said. The reason? It's cold here.

Heating homes and businesses takes massive amounts of energy. While Wisconsin is working to build alternative energy sources, like wind and solar, it still has to burn coal to meet people's power needs.

Despite that reality, Racine said the Midwest's moral and just culture make it an important voice in advocating for needed lifestyle changes to protect the planet. Communities throughout the region are organizing around the need to cut emissions that contribute to global warming.

"There is a need to come together," Racine said.

Racine is attending COP15 as part of the Will Steger Foundation's "Expedition Copenhagen," which gives young adults ages 18 to 26 a place at the United Nation's negotiations. She'll be in Copenhagen from Dec. 3-21 reporting on the proceedings through blogs and video interviews. (See Racine's interview on the Will Steger Foundation website.)

It's an exciting opportunity for Racine, who is passionate about environmental issues. She's best known locally for her work at the REC Center along the Root River - she teaches classes to elementary students - and for organizing the Racine 350 rally on Monument Square on Oct. 24.

Racine said she didn't give much thought to detractors who attack climate change as a myth. The problem is so big, she said, many people choose to ignore or deride it rather than face the reality that the planet may be in peril.

"It's outside of their capacity to visualize these changes," Racine said of critics.

"Some people feel attacked," she added, saying she understood why people lashed out over climate change. "I see it as a coping mechanism."

COP15 is the 15th United Nations meeting to update the Kyoto Protocol, which was approved in 1997. The United States acounted for 36 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in 1990, but is the only country in the world to announce it had no intention of signing the agreement to stabilize global emissions.

Despite the U.S.'s reluctance, it remain a major player in the COP15 negotiations. The House of Representatives passed the American Clean Energy and Security Act in June that would create a cap-and-trade system designed to control greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. The House vote energized negotiations for a new international climate change protocol and increased the likelihood of a new agreement.

However, there appears to be little hope for a finished treaty to emerge from COP15. Instead, leaders are now calling for global leaders to set a deadline for a treaty at next month's conference.

Racine said she would do her part to advocate with the youth delegation for a new agreement on climate change.

"The goal is a bold, just and binding treaty," she said.


  1. Better to stay home COP15 is a feel good do nothing event.


    But by all means feel good. If I can who's paying to off set the Carbon credits for the trip for the Photo Op I mean COP 15?

    Be far better to do things in Racine but that mean something would have to happen.

  2. If you don't believe in global warming, you should be concerned with pollution! Increasing natural gas supplies make filthy coal elimination the better move.

  3. Who is paying for the trip? Not a single penny better be coming from the taxpayers here -

  4. 3 things we can do in Racine now that have an impact when done:
    1) Use Bio-diesal to run equipment, offers better millage better maintenance. Person to ask why we are not doing it now Rick Jones DPW
    2) Use CFL in our homes uses less power last longer
    3) Allow homeowners to grow more Gardens vs Lawn. Grass uses lots of water fuel to cut. Person to ask why we can not do so now. Rick Jones DPW, perhaps Rick Heller

    No one has to fly anywhere, but that would mean no photo opportunity

  5. Drill here Drill now!

  6. Nuclear Power - will handle everything.

  7. Let me just guess that "representing racine" means that she will be on the "Stop Warming" side rather than actaully represent anyone. The term Representative has ben missued for a numer of years now - usually by Lliberals who also love "community Organizers" which means Liberal Activest

  8. Perhaps Racine, with her advanced degree in the sciences (any one of the sciences), can describe the Scientific Method - and how it is (not) employed in global warming "experiments".

  9. Congrats to Jaime! It is very encouraging to see young people taking an active role in making our home a better place. Thank you for your dedication and hard work. What a great opportunity to be part of this global meeting. Also a great thing for Racine, WI having one of only two WI representatives.

    I hope you represent Racine, WI well in Copenhagen and enjoy your time overseas.

    Best wishes

  10. Anonymous 11:21, I hate to tell you this, but CO2 is not a pollutant.

  11. I am sure she will enjoy her time overseas. If she wanted to work God knows there is a lot to do here, but no photos just hard work.

  12. Anon 11:34 just exactly what do you plan on doing about it if tax money is used? Just curious

  13. 6:36

    Vote the Mayor out of office along with the other yahoos behind this bs gig

  14. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  15. we all know which corporate crime family likes international ballyhoo. Too bad those CFR and Trilateral Commission creeps aren't picking up the tab for this farce.

  16. Dustin? Pete? Really, who is paying?

  17. Wow, my comment got deleted because I said global warming was a crock of dung. No bias here.

  18. If you do not believe in Global Warming you are an Enemy of the State.
    The State know what is best for you! Hear the School children sing the Praise of the leader!

    Your job is to shut up and pay your taxes!


  20. bbbbbaaaaaaaawwwwwwwwwwwaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

  21. Follow the money - so far there has not been one peep of where the joy ride funds are coming from.

  22. Good question where is the money coming from?
    Is it the City?
    Johnson's ?
    Her own funds?


    Best I can tell from the Federal Government via Wisconsin Campus Compact AmeriCorps*VISTA program maybe even Stumulas money. If thasts the case the TAX payers who for the most part think that Global Warming is just silly get stuck with the bill to not only sent this women overseas but pay her to come back and push yet another Obama left wing program with tax and spend. Next step is to see if she is part of C4C my guess yes and that would answerer not only why the puff buy why The Post will not tell us where the money is coming from.


  25. Jamie is great. I can agree with less pollution. I don't buy the global warming panic.

    We should open up the grid and allow our residents to purchase power from all over the US. WE energies is a corporate crime monopoly. Everyone I know is on budget billing.

  26. I posted right after anon 8:11 asking Dustin/Pete again about the funding for the trip - and it was deleted. You guys have to be kidding me!

  27. OK, I am an ass. My post was not deleted, I was wrong about the order of the posts. Sorry to Pete and Dustin !!!!!!

  28. I would like to have some global warming. It gets way too cold here in the winter, and our summer wasn't anything special.

  29. So, her claim is that the Midwest is 4th in polluting (if it were a country) because of the cold climate. Wouldn't she therefore be in favor of global warming? By that line of logic, if the whole planet was warm, there would not be any danger in climate change. Right? Or am I missing something here?

  30. 2:47
    Please report for reeducation.

  31. Relax everybody.

    The private Will Steger Foundation is paying for Jamie's trip to Copenhagen. No taxpayer dollars will be used on the trip.

  32. Thanks for the info. Next then she be take time off from her Vista job right?

  33. To address some of the issues: I am an AmeriCorps Alum, therefore, I am no longer in service. I will not be using any public funds for my trip. All funds have been donated through private fundraisers. I have not received any money from private companies or organizations. All funds have come from individuals that believe in me and the mission of this expedition. The Midwest is one of the world's highest polluters due to our use of coal; Wisconsin alone receives 70% of our energy from coal. When I mentioned the cold weather, it was to make the point that we consume more during winter months. In regards to the expedition's carbon footprint, the Will Steger Foundation has committed to off set the delegation's collective carbon footprint. Lastly, I want to state that the high school leaders of Racine and a few of their teachers were really the lead organizers on the 350 event; I was more of a support member in the process.

    I am going to Copenhagen to represent the youth of this great state. I have spent the last few months collecting position statements and engaging them in conversation around this issue. It is clear that we need a more sustainable world. Our responsibility is to take civic action to hold our local, state, national and world leaders accountable to addressing this issue. I am traveling half way around the world to take responsibility, to take the voice of my peers and to push for a stronger, sustainable future NOW. The impact of climate change for Wisconsin could mean scorching summers with intense heat waves and drought, heavy flooding in the spring, and more intense snowfalls in the winter. I am not willing to take a back seat and wait for these climate changes to occur before I take action. This is why I'm going to Copenhagen.

    I am also taking action locally and will continue to do so upon my return. My work in Copenhagen is not as a disillusioned youth looking for a feel good time; my work will provide an international stage to spotlight the great achievements and the climate-focused goals that Wisconsin youth & its leaders are committed to achieving. Our delegation is organized, educated and empowered to take on this issue both locally and globally.

    Whether you believe in this mission or are skeptical, I invite you to follow our work at You can contact me or the other delegates via e-mail. We are open to constructive feedback that will continue to challenge us in the work that we do, including both local and on the ground in Copenhagen.

  34. I have read your blos ant watched the you tube spots. Free country (so far) go if you want have a great time.
    Please do not think that Cap and trade is anything but a job killer.
    At the same time you wish to stop burning Coal what are we going to do to replace it? Nukes? Wind? What?
    I read many of The Al Gore types that believe that any who disagree on Global Warming/Change should be treated as criminals is this your thought as well?
    I do not understand how you and others are more then willing to raise our taxes and cause millions to lose jobs for something that can not be proven and full of Bad Science lack of facts. You get your science I get mine.
    I am amazed that no one has exposed the Carbin Credits scams such as the tree farms planted in Tibet, as in The PRC removeing Tibetan farmers off there family owned farms to start PRC Government owned tree farms.

    Here is a blog that many of the global warming crowd think is a good idea

  35. Suzanne Hawes11/18/2009 4:53 PM

    Jamie, I, for one, have seen your great work in the past and know you are an asset to any organization who has the good fortune to have your talents. Thank you for representing Racine - we are fortunate to have you doing so!

  36. I know lets allow the rich white who may work at Johnson's to use as much of everything they want by having them buy Carbon Credits. WE just make damn sure the poor will not be able to afford that. This way we can force them to take the bus not bother us when we go out because they will not be able to afford it. WE can heat our homes to whatever we want and if their grandma dies from being cold there are too many of them anyway.

  37. some equations make sense.

    independent energy production = independence

    insulation = energy conservation = lower bills = money in your pocket = clean air

    new industries = new jobs/research

    sort of makes sense... remember the "race for space" in the 60s?

  38. Ben

    Drill Here Drill Now = More Oil
    Drill off shore = More Oil
    Nuke Power = Cheep energy
    Lowering taxes = More investment

    Cap and Trade = Job killing
    Global Warming = NOT MAN MADE if its even happening
    COP 15 = Photo Op UN money pit

  39. Well stated Jamie. It sounds like you really have your act together, so thank you for your hard work and dedication. I find it really encouraging to see young people stepping up.

    Negative comments will always be around so don't let it affect you. If you continue to evaluate your positions make decisions based upon the increasing human understanding of our nature world then you will be fine.

    Skeptic or not, I have to believe everyone in their gut thinks something isn't quite right and it takes time and dedication to uncover the facts. Sometimes along the way our viewpoints have to change with the new information, but the point is moving forward and advancing that understanding. That's what you are doing and you should be commended for it.

    Thanks again.



  42. Hate to say it but us global heating deniers might have the good science on our side. There is newly broken evidence that the science Gore and others tout is is AN ORCESTRATED FRAUD. A real journalist hacked into these scientists computers and published evidence that they ignored and actually hid proof of global cooling.

    You can learn about "The Evidence of Climate Fraud" here.

  43. Jamie what are your thoughts about Climate reparations that Countries like Bolivia are calling for? Should this county pay them? Do you believe that The USA should pay the costs for the third world to leap frog over the use of oil and Nuke power?
    Is something not proven like climate change worth the destruction of the American economy?
    Are we going to see answers or just the neat photos of you going?

  44. BCMP - Gore is a fraud - and milked millions out of this nonsense.


  46. Either way.. keep it real.

    The five counties with the highest rates of asthma ED visits (per 10,000 population) for 2003-2005 were Milwaukee (96.3), Menominee (73.4), Jackson (63.4), Racine (49.0) and Richland (49.0).

    Update: The Wisconsin DNR is issuing an Air Quality Advisory for 39 Wisconsin counties for Tuesday, November 24th and Wednesday morning. The Air Quality Watch for the majority of the state continues through Wednesday, November 25th.

    Mercury and PCBs are the contaminants of greatest concern in fish prompting recommendations that people limit or avoid eating certain species of fish from many waters throughout the nation.

    We don't have to put up with this...we can change things for the better and save the ice caps!

  47. Jamie's on her way to Copenhagen today and I can't think of a better representative to help shape and give voice to the issues of global warming. I worked with Jamie and witnessed her extraordinary energy, intellect and care for the world around her.

    As far as some of the comments from folks who are doubting global warming, here's a little Barbara Kingsolver thought for the day: "Policial urgencies come and go, but it's a fair enough vocation to strike one match after another against the dark isolation, when spectacular ignorance rules the day and tries to force hope into hiding. It seems that there is still so much to say that I had better raise up a yell across the fence. I have stories of things I believe in: a persistent river, a forest on the edge of night, the religion inside a seed, the startle of wingbeats when a spark of red life flies against all reason out of the darkness."

    I am not sure how far away we are from a whole healed world, but part of our humanity is to live and work as if it were right around the corner - and to keep believing in that. Faith has a life of its own.

    Jamie, here's to you: thanks for reading a thousand pages of policy preparing for this conference, being a good hopeful force for climate control and believing enough to stick your neck out.

    Keep striking the match. You're not alone.

  48. The neighbors and I have a question for Jamie: why are American kids at Walden singing a silly song from India ("Jai Ho")as part of their climate change protest? Also, I'd like to know why a ditzy ditty from a land notorious for labor exploitation, poverty and lack of basic human rights would even be in the curriculum of an American high school. These days, it seems that our kids study everything except the USA and American culture. (None of this is meant as a negative comment on Jamie and her associates. However, the long-suffering property tax payers of Racine would like to know what's going on in the schools they're forced to support and why Unified is so receptive to foreign stuff.)