In this blog I will post results of a short environmental survey that I have sent to government officials, religious leaders, corporate CEOs, wildlife experts, and others. Click Here to take the survey
***DISCLAIMER- The views expressed in the surveys are personal views of the respondents, and are not to be taken as official statements.***
Thanks to my sister Michelle McIlroy for designing the logo!
Ever since I was a child, I have been very interested in nature and the environment. I have a B.S. degree in wildlife biology, and have worked as a zookeeper, wildlife biologist, and ecologist. I am conducting a brief survey of world leaders, government officials, religious leaders, corporate CEOs, environmental groups, wildlife experts, and others regarding nature and the environment. I am also very interested in religious views, customs, and beliefs from around the world, and the interactions between religion, culture, society, and the environment. This is something I am doing out of personal interest, and is not connected to any group or organization. I have been working on this project since the summer of 2006, and hope to eventually turn it into a book and/or documentary. I am hoping to make this into a global project, with responses from all segments of society. Feel free to contact me directly if you have any questions or comments. If you have not already done so, I hope that you will consider taking part in my project, and please spread the word to anyone you think might be interested! Thanks for stopping by!
Hello friends! Although as of yet I have not raised any funds towards my
campaign to meet Sudan, I am not giving up! He is still alive, so that
means there is still time... Time is not on his side though, as he is
considered to be old age for a rhino, so if I am going to meet him
before he leaves this world, it will have to be soon! Any extra money
left at the end of my trip will be donated to Ol Pejeta for the care of
their other rhinos, as well as for future conservation efforts. I have
been supporting Sudan for around 2 years now, and have also supported 2
other rhinos at Ol Pejeta over the last couple of years. Really hope to
get there one of these days!
Overnight Energy: GOP senators push to block climate fund money
GOP SENATORS: NO CLIMATE FUND MONEY: Sen. John Barrasso
(R-Wyo.) is once again leading a group of Republican senators in
demanding that Congress stop the Obama administration's attempts to pay
money into the United Nations' Green Climate Fund.
are asking the Senate Appropriations Committee to write into its bill a
provision preventing any funds from going to the international body,
which uses its money to help developing nations cut greenhouse gas
emissions and adapt to climate change.
It comes after the State
Department paid $500 million into the fund, its first such payment,
pointing out that last year's appropriations bill did not set aside
money for the fund, but didn't prohibit officials from shifting around
money from other places.
"We stand firmly opposed to taxpayer dollars going to the GCF," the senators wrote in the Tuesday letter.
has never authorized or specifically approved funding for the GCF.
Giving billions of dollars to an international climate fund is a
significant waste of American resources," they said. "With the United
States' national debt exceeding $19 trillion and the difficulty finding
resources to make critical investments here at home, we should not be
sending taxpayer dollars overseas to international bureaucrats in the
name of climate change."
Here is the note I sent to each of them via their "contact me" pages on their Senate websites. Assuming it will make no difference, and that I will not get a response, but if they hear enough messages like this, maybe they will reconsider their backwards views....
Your recent opposition to the payment of money to the Green Climate Fund
is appalling. It is time for the Republican Party to come to grips with the
fact that the climate is changing, and that humans are at least in part a cause
of the changes. We as a society need to be stepping up and doing our part to
help ensure that our children and grandchildren have a planet left worth
inheriting. Continued opposition to anything good for the environment should
NOT be a part of any political platform, especially that of the Republican
Party, the party of Theodore Roosevelt, one of the greatest conservationists
the country has seen. A sustainable future is the only future, and the
backward-facing views of the Republican Party simply are not in line with that.
The views and actions of the Republican Party will do nothing except for place
the planet on a fast-track collision course with a death sentence. I implore
you to reconsider your opposition to the GCF, and to discontinue standing in
the way of the will of the people to make a better home for everyone, yourself
included. Should you continue to oppose anything that is good for the future of
the planet, then I hope that you will find yourself soon out of office.
Oceanwide Expeditions is running a contest to send someone to Antarctica, and I have entered! As many of you know, I have spent much of my life championing the environment, and working to promote a better, sustainable future for the planet. Antarctica is on my bucket list of places to visit, but financially, it is very much out of reach, and unfortunately I don't see that changing any time soon. With the effects of climate change already beginning to show, I fear that I may never get to see this wonder before it is drastically changed, if I am able to make it at all. Please consider voting for me so that I can take this trip of a lifetime!
Your recent diatribes regarding the Omnibus Spending and Tax Bill are laughable. Everyone knows that you are just shills for the fossil fuel industry and ultra-conservative right-wing "Christian" ideologues, not representative of the majority of decent American citizens. If you were really such an influential organization, then please explain to me why your trip to the Vatican had no impact on the release of Laudato Si, in fact, why you were unable to even secure an audience with the Pope. Also, please explain why your "Day of Examining the Data" had no impact on the COP-21 proceedings. Indeed, your keynote video speaker Senator Inhofe is one of the biggest imbeciles in Congress. I would assume that you are also fervent backers of the repugnant Donald Trump? You claim that your climate conference in Germany was also a success, but what has come of it? It was nothing more than a chance for you to mingle with your European denier counterparts, coming up with more of the same sad rhetoric that you already spew at every opportunity. A conference of climate deniers and skeptics is really sad in a day and age when the majority of the populace as well as almost all credible scientists and faith leaders
agree that climate change is happening, is human-caused, and is something we need to urgently address.
Why is your organization so hell-bent on putting the country and planet on a fast-track collision course with a death sentence? Your organization and those like you would take this country back to the dark ages if you had your way, back to an industrial age filled with smog and pollution, and high death rates. You are not visionary, you are people who look in the rear-view mirror and think you see the future. You long ago replaced the blood in your veins with oil, and became polluted by the greed of the fossil fuel industry and the right-wing lunatics who would love to see this country become one based on biblical law, a xenophobic land with no opportunity for a decent future. The RepubliCAN Party, which used to be a party concerned with the environment, has become the RepubliCANT Party, where the vision of the future is whatever the dirty money filling their pockets wants it to be. More environmental regulations were passed and environmental agencies created during Republican administrations than Democrat, yet the Republican Party of today would turn the planet into a cesspool of despair given their chance.
I for one am proud to be a registered Democrat, and pleased that I can see through the lies and disinformation that is being shouted out as the truth by your "experts" and those that you try to hold influence over in Congress. I would rather struggle to make ends meet and know that I was doing right for the planet than cave to the likes of you and have a more financially-secure future. I work 2 jobs 7 days a week to make ends meet, but still donate a portion of every paycheck-to the tune of thousands of dollars each year-to environmental and conservation organizations, because they have the vision and common sense to work towards a positive outcome for the planet and the species that it supports. I would not give one red cent to you or any of the organizations or people that you support or work with, even if you were destitute in the street begging for change.
I can only hope that at some point as your outbursts become more and more outlandish that people will see them for what they are, a desperate attempt to appease those who fund you, and will not give them any credence. You do more harm than good, and should be ashamed of the dim and dismal future that you seek for all of us.
Senior Extension Associate, NYS IPM Program - Cornell University
Jul 23, 2009
1. What interaction with an animal and/or nature in your life has had the biggest impact on you? Growing up in a rural environment with easy access to outdoor areas.
2. Did you have a favorite place in the great outdoors during your childhood? How about now??
Marshes, lakes, and woods in the county where my grandparents lived. The farmland creek near where I grew up. Currently, close by: several marshes and a railroad bed turned hiking trail; further away: the Adirondack backcountry
3. As a former zookeeper, I would love to know what your favorite animal is, and why?
Siberian tiger. Top of the food chain predator.
4. What do you think is the greatest environmental challenge facing us now, and what do you think will be the greatest challenge in the future?
Combination of human population growth and materialistic lifestyles.
5. If you could give everyone one piece of advice regarding the environment and our natural resources, what would it be?
Get to intimately know a natural area. You cannot love what you do not know.
Time and time again, I wonder if the Republican Party has ever been taught how to use a compass, or can even grasp the concept of a GPS unit, as they are clearly running in the wrong direction. From their attempts to dismantle the environmental policies that protect our natural resources, and indeed our health and well-being, to their attempts to undermine the upcoming COP21 Climate Conference in Paris, they are hell-bent on dragging the country down the path to never-never land that they seem to be following. Granted, most of them are in the pockets of the fossil fuel industry, polluters, and any number of special interest groups looking to profit at the expense of our environment and health, so I suppose it is to be expected, but it is still appalling.
Following the recent tragedy in Paris, the Republicans have really shown how backwards their views are, and how closed-minded their leadership is. Never mind the fact that the bombings in Beirut and the continual attacks by Boko Haram on the Nigerian people largely go unreported, the fact that the Republican party seized upon this tragedy to try and block all Syrian refugees from entering this country is outrageous. Even more repugnant was the suggestion by some that only Christian refugees be allowed into the country. There are many flaws with the "logic" of the Republican Party (although using both words in the same sentence really feels like an oxymoron)…
For starters, the idea that letting Syrian (i.e. Muslim) refugees into the country makes us more vulnerable to terrorist attacks is laughable. The refugees entering this country already go through more intense scrutiny than people entering the country on work, student, or tourist visas, yet they have been the majority of perpetrators of terrorist attacks and threats in the country. Also, does the name Timothy McVeigh not mean anything? One of the worst terrorist attacks this country has seen outside of 9/11 was the bombing in Oklahoma City, which was masterminded and carried out by white male citizens of the United States, not refugees seeking shelter from terrorists themselves… Unabomber, Eric Rudolph, the list goes on…. Home-grown, white male terrorists, often doing their terror in the name of Christianity.
The offensive suggestion that only letting Christian refugees in would be acceptable is just as preposterous, as if being Christian makes you immune to being a threat to anyone. More than 1 million people died during the Crusades, and thousands died during the Inquisition. Both of these were done in the name of Christianity. The torture tens of thousands faced during the Inquisition rivaled that used by many modern terrorists, but again, it was done in the name of Christianity. There are countless examples throughout history of Christianity usurping the cultures and customs of other peoples in order to better force them to assimilate, and when they resisted, they were done away with.
I am not saying that all Republicans are of this mindset, or that there are not Democrats who are delusional in their views as well, but as a whole, the Republican Party, and not the Syrian refugees, is one of the biggest threats our country currently faces.
Not only is the
United States government and many of its
citizens taking the threat seriously, so is much of the business world, even if
it might impact their profitability in the short-term. Many Fortune 500
companies have a plan for dealing with climate change in place, with more than 36
joining the organization RE100, formed at the 2014 Climate Week
held in NYC. New members of RE100 (focused on converting to 100% renewable
energy) include Johnson & Johnson, Starbucks, and Walmart (Gillis & St. Fleur, 2015 and Mazzoni,
2015). Companies including Google,
Yahoo, Facebook, and even energy giant Royal
Dutch Shell have left the conservative non-profit (and KOCH funded) business
organization ALEC over their denials of
climate change (Page, 2015), and recently discovered internal documents from
ExxonMobil (then Exxon) show that the company believed global warming as it was
then called to
be a threat as far back as 1982 (Song, et. al., 2015). Many mayors and city officials from the U.S.
and around the world have joined the fight against climate change. To date, 165
have become members of the Compact of Mayors (Compact of Mayors, 2015), and
during the recent 2015 U.S.-China Climate Leaders Summit, numerous U.S. and Chinese cities made a variety of pledges (Shank, 2015) regarding carbon
emissions, renewable energy, and other climate related initiatives.
Recently, some members of the Republican Party showed that
the entire party does not have an addiction to Koch; 11 members of the U.S.
House of Representatives broke ranks with their party, offering
a resolution calling for action on climate change (Pandey, 2015). Even
George W. Bush called global warming “an issue that
we need to take very seriously” (Issues2000, 2000), and in 2005, during his
Presidency, admitted that human activity is causing global warming (NRDC,
n.d.). Former Florida Governor and current Republican presidential candidate
Jeb Bush has made all sorts of statements over the years about climate change
and global warming, recently saying that humans are indeed causing it, although
rejecting the need for government action (Kerr, 2015).
The tide seems to be turning on climate change, yet there are
some who much like our coastlines if too little is done too late are standing
on the beach with their heads in the sand, waiting to get washed out to sea.
**The views expressed herein are mine alone, and not
to be seen as representative of any organization or person that I am affiliated
with. Permission is granted to distribute these comments in their entirety, as
long as credit is given and I am notified at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Al Hussein, N. (2015). Islam,
Faith, and Climate Change. Retrieved from