Here in beautiful Pala, we are blessed to have blue skies, green valleys, and tall mountain peaks to enjoy, along with mild southern California weather. But that doesn’t mean we are immune from the effects of climate change. Human activity has poured untold quantities of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane, into the atmosphere. These gases trap heat and prevent it from escaping into space, which results in Mother Earth getting overheated – just like a greenhouse. This greenhouse effect causes global warming, which in turn causes changes in long-term weather patterns – in other words, climate change. Climate change affects more than just the weather – along with more extreme weather events, we can also expect to see more drought, higher summertime temperatures, changes in plants, impacts to animals, and more. The direct affects on people include exposure to disease from pests such as rodents and mosquitoes, uncertainty or insecurity in our food supply, higher risks to water sources – including water from wells here in Pala – and increased rates of allergies, asthma, and more.
If this all seems scary, it should – but that doesn’t mean that we can’t fight back! There are many actions that you can take personally. At the Pala Environmental Department, we are also working hard to develop a Climate Adaptation Plan (CAP). This is where YOU come in. If you are a member of the Pala community, we need your help with developing the CAP. Come to our community meeting on Tuesday, May 22, 2018 at 3 pm at the Pala Administration Building and learn more about climate change risks, and tell us what YOU want to see in the CAP. Climate change is happening, but with your help, we can make sure that Pala survives and thrives.