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With Northeast Ohio's biodiversity at stake, regional parks and naturalists find their voice

Marc Lefkowitz  |  02/15/19 @ 3:00pm  |  Posted in Climate, Land, Water, Plants & animals, Shaping the land

They have been gathering for years to advocate for nature in Northeast Ohio. They are park rangers, wetlands biologists, wildlife specialists, and conservationists getting their hands dirty on a daily basis in natural areas. Increasingly, they have become the voice for nature in a region that has lost many acres of forests and wetlands to unplanned development.

<br />Images courtesy of LEAP<br /><br /><br />

Ideas for state and local leaders to tackle climate change

Marc Lefkowitz  |  10/12/18 @ 1:00pm  |  Posted in Climate, Transform

A new UN report out this week contained no equivocation about the “dire” and “accelerated” affects of climate change. Immediately, the pundits went to work on analyzing what will happen if we don’t respond. The report also put a fine point on the “politicization” of climate change as the biggest obstacle for a response. To place the report in context, it...

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Trees in an age of climate change

Marc Lefkowitz  |  09/19/18 @ 4:00pm  |  Posted in Climate

The Lake Erie Allegheny Partnership (LEAP), a local coalition of parks and natural areas, is coming to terms with how the region’s forests will look in a significantly warmer climate. Cleveland is likely to experience hotter, drier summers and warmer, shorter winters this century, a regime change that is expected to push trees that thrive in our current moderate, wet...

<br />Glacial kettle lakes like this one in Punderson State Park in Geauga County could lose much of its dramatic landscape with climate change.

Where Cleveland is most vulnerable to climate change

Marc Lefkowitz  |  09/17/18 @ 1:00pm  |  Posted in Climate

How Cleveland will be impacted by climate change is the focus of a study being produced by the City of Cleveland’s Office of Sustainability and Cleveland Neighborhood Progress (CNP). Principal investigator, Dr. Nick Rajkovich, was hired to study how climate change will mix with urban areas. A native Clevelander and associate professor in the Department of Architecture at University of...

<br />Most vulnerable to heat areas in Cleveland. From the Climate Hazard and Social Vulnerability Assessment of 2018. Credit: University of Buffalo.

We are all Lake Erie

Marc Lefkowitz  |  08/02/18 @ 11:00am  |  Posted in Climate, Water, Shaping the land

A recent exchange with a colleague about the health of Lake Erie ended in something of a stalemate. We both shared concerns about water quality and environmental degradation and how the lake, our drinking water supply, will be affected by harmful algae blooms, climate change-induced weather, and the creation of artificial reefs off the coast of Cleveland from the soil...

Wild and pristine<br />At its best, as in this view at Mentor Headlands State Park, Lake Erie appears clean and clear and awesome as an ocean. Place of contemplation<br />The sun sets to the northwest  over Lake Erie in the summer.Armored shoreline<br />The Lake Erie coastal zone is a dynamic place where one person's shoreline protection can undermine a neighbor's property.Off limits<br />Northeast Ohioans might have a stronger connection to Lake Erie if public access were not so limited.  Toxic algae returns<br />Algal blooms were thought to be part of Lake Erie's polluted past, but a huge outbreak of the green scum covering much of the western and central basins of the lake in October 2011 was an indication that over-enrichment of nutrients from runoff is still a problem.  (NASA satellite image)

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