Last month at the NAAEE conference, as news of the US leaving the Paris Agreement received minor bylines amongst the all-consuming election headlines, APW learned about the US Action for Climate Empowerment (ACE). ACE has developed a strategic framework to guide the completion of a national strategic plan in time for delivery at the 26th UNFCCC Congress of the Parties in November 2021. Even as the US leaves the Paris Agreement, coalitions of states, cities, and businesses have committed to climate action. They represent 68% of US GDP, 65% of US population, and 51% of US greenhouse gas emissions. The ACE Framework draft is undergoing review and will be released on November 30, 2020. It is a culmination of decades of work including a series of recent participatory dialogues that involved 120 individuals from 100 organizations.
APW’s Recharge the Rain project resonates with the Framework's educational recommendations. Partnering with Watershed Management Group, APW developed and implements the project, which empowers teachers and students to learn and act to build community resilience to climate change. ACE defines "climate empowerment" as "the capacity of individuals to understand the complexities of the systemic drivers of climate change, to actively engage in the transformation of these systems, and to participate in meaningful individual and collective personal and political action in response to climate change and its impacts.” We invite you all to continue your journey of learning and to engage in meaningful actions to create resilient communities.