Kids vs. global warming founder to speak on January 31st

Alec Loorz was 12 when he saw “An Inconvenient Truth,” Al Gore’s documentary movie on global warming. “That’s what sparked my awareness of this issue and caused me to do something about it,” he said.

At 13, Loorz founded the nonprofit Kids vs. Global Warming, which urges young people to become activists on the subject. Now 15, Loorz has given over 100 lectures to more than 20,000 people around the country. He has spoken at the United Nations, been to the White House, presented a “Declaration of Independence from Fossil Fuels” to a US Senate subcommittee, traveled to Copenhagen for the Climate Summit, received awards from ABC-TV and the Weather Channel and been a member of panels at several climate and energy conferences.

He will speak on Sunday Jan. 31 at 1 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock at 48 Shelter Rock Rd. in Manhasset on “What Kids Can Do About Global Warming.” The event is sponsored by the Shelter Rock Forum. “I realized that we as youth are going to be affected by this crisis,” Loorz said. “That caused me to stand up and raise my voice to make a difference. I stress three things: conservation–doing everything we can to use less fossil fuels; innovation–coming up with alternative energy solutions; and sequestration–taking carbon out of the air, such as by planting trees.

Loorz said he was disappointed in the results of the Climate Summit. “Some people feel we need to stop at 350 [the safe limit of carbon in the atmosphere] to avoid the worst effects of the climate crisis,” he said, “but the final agreement said 450. And we’re already at 387…But I do feel hopeful because 100,000 people came to this event to demand climate justice, and more than 160 nations were represented. It was historic to see all these nations taking climate change seriously.”

Loorz said those such as himself, who feel global warming is a crisis, have to work harder in 2010. “The main reason we’re in this recession is because of our addiction to fossil fuel. If we could transition to solar power, wind power…that is American made, we wouldn’t have to go overseas to get oil. These are oil wars we’re waging [in Iraq and Afghanistan] because we’re running out of it…We have less than 10 years to solve this crisis. We can’t wait. We as kids need to do something now.”

Kids 18 and under will be admitted free and there is $5 suggested donation for adults.

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