EDF Climate Corps Blog

I received quizzical looks from family and friends when I told them I was working on water efficiency projects at Verizon this summer. They paused, racking their brains about where water is used within the telecommunications industry. “Like in the bathrooms?” they’d ask.

Can you tell a story about climate change that’s as memorable as Terminator, Aliens, The Abyss, True Lies, Titanic or Avatar?  James Cameron, the acclaimed director of all of those blockbusters, clearly thinks it’s worth a shot given his involvement in a nine part docu-series that had its premier screening in London this week. 

Summer at EDF is always an exciting time as EDF Climate Corps fellows fan out and begin their placements at organizations across the country. This year we're thrilled to see a dozen fellows working with private equity firms and their portfolio companies, the highest number of such placements in a single summer.

The range of skills needed to work in the interdisciplinary field of sustainability run the gamut from energy modeling to negotiation and from financial analysis to communications. I myself have degrees in both psychology and environmental management, and I work with a team with individuals who have studied economics, international affairs, anthropology, history and integrative biology. Each of us brings something unique to the table, and as a whole, the group benefits from having such diverse expertise.

Discussions about combating climate change often center around disruptive technologies or drastic changes to normal methods of doing business. These flashy conversation pieces grab our attention and make for easy headlines, but often overshadow one of the simplest tools available for increasing energy efficiency: ourselves. 

Something that has inspired me to be a part of EDF Climate Corps is my love for the environment, which was inspired by environmental books, and in many cases, the work being done at EDF has mirrored the topics in some of my favorite books. Books can be great knowledge repositories, providing chronological snapshots of the changing landscape—people, politics, perspective, culture, environment and ecology.

The Obama Administration is developing new fuel economy standards for trucks and last week, Ceres and Environmental Defense Fund hosted a webinar outlining how implementing strong federal standards for medium- and heavy-duty trucks would be truly a win-win situation.

At EDF, all our advocacy and education around climate change aims to change behaviors -- of individuals, corporations, utilities, governments and communities. But in order to change behavior, we must first change their belief systems.

The temperature isn’t the only thing warming up this month. EDF Climate Corps fellows warmed up to their projects as they began their quests to save organizations energy and money, generating a stir of chatter about EDF Climate Corps. Below, we’ve summed up this month’s chatter about EDF Climate Corps.

Walking along a golden field close to my new home in Northampton County, rural North Carolina, I suddenly feel suspended in time. I realize that this is the first moment in the last few months that I have finally been able to slow down. Only a month ago, I was offered a position as an Environmental Defense Fund Climate Corps fellow with Roanoke Electric Cooperative (REC).