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3ThoughtThursday – save our planet, Huron County Council, summer science

Updated: Sep 1, 2021

I had a tough time reading about the state of our planet earlier this week. Describing the report as a "code red for humanity," UN Secretary General António Guterres urged an immediate end to coal energy and other high-polluting fossil fuels.

That's where we begin this week, but not where we end.

1. A "code red for humanity". You know when you have a pit in your stomach and you sort of ignore it? I ignored that feeling for a while, and then I knew I had to process what I had just read about the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report.

"The alarm bells are deafening," Guterres said in a statement. "This report must sound a death knell for coal and fossil fuels, before they destroy our planet."”

The news about our planet isn’t great. It wasn’t surprising, and in fact is quite upsetting. Lucky for me, I work in an environment where my colleagues openly discussed the anxiety and emotional toll of reading reports like this one. I shared with a colleague the sense of impending doom I was experiencing, and she talked to me about having hope.

In addition to hope, there are plans and solutions to help save our planet. And there is urgency. We must act now.

Let’s keep this conversation in headlines. It is not time to be quiet, and it is not time to slow down.

In the words of my colleague Susie Ho, “…I don’t want to move to Mars just yet. Mars seems really dusty… and it ain't the kind of place to raise your kids”. I’m with you, Susie.

2) As I crawled out of the anxiety-filled gloomy realization our planet is in dire need of saving, I logged into Huron County Council to tell them about the electric vehicle report, Plugging In.

In last week’s blog post I shared the reasons behind the road show with the report.

Huron County Council were pleased to hear from us and reiterated the positive relationship between Huron County and the Nuclear Innovation Institute. I’m feeling the love from the region and I can’t wait to continue our good work.

3) “Remember summer camp? Singing songs, making crafts… launching a two-metre-long rocket into the air??” My colleagues continue to offer incredible programming through the Science in the Summer program.

Have you been following @niiexplore on Instagram? Ready to see the next generation of brilliant scientists? Take a look at these kids!

The Science in the Summer program has been very well received across Bruce, Grey and Huron Counties. Each morning, staff pack up science kits and trek out to day camps, markets, libraries, and other public spaces to inspire kids (and adults!).

I’ve witnessed the same staff return to the office after a long day in the sun, and they don’t have a whole lot of kits to unpack. A sign of a good day is an empty car returning to the NII parking lot, knowing hundreds of science kits have found good homes.

Programs like this and other NII Explore initiatives are inspiring the next generation. I cannot wait to see what they come up with next.


Jessica Linthorne is the Director of the Clean Energy Frontier.


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