Climate Summit 
2013 Coalition

National Climate Summit - 

Letter from U.S. Catholics

Catholics see climate change as a critical faith issue. Please sign the letter from US Catholics to President Obama.

National Climate Summit - 

Letter from Youth & Families

If you are under 18th years old or represent a youth or family organization sign this letter.


Governors, Mayors, Business, Insurance, Farm, Military, Youth, Faith, and Other Voices: Enhance The Economy, Improve Public Health, Protect National Security, Safeguard Our Children, Act Justly, and Honor Our Moral Duties By Putting Solutions Into Action

Feb. 21, 2013 – (Washington, DC). A unique bi-partisan coalition is urging President Obama to follow up his State of the Union commitment to address the climate crises by directly engaging America in climate solutions: (

Specifically, the group wants the President to host a kick-off solutions-focused national climate summit linked directly with concurrent action-planning meetings hosted by state and local governments, business, civic, and faith organizations nationwide. The events would be designed to mobilize Americans to implement proven, beneficial solutions to prepare for and build resilience to the impacts of climate change, and reduce climate-damaging greenhouse gas emissions. 

“To achieve the bold climate goals the President described in his State of the Union address, he must reach out directly to and engage Americans where they live, work, play, and pray,” said Bob Doppelt, director of The Resources Innovation Group and a leader of the Climate Summit 2013 Coalition.

The national leaders endorsing Climate Summit 2013 include Governors, Mayors,  business, farm, insurance, youth, faith, civil rights, climate justice, former military, and other leaders, as well as top climate scientists. A growing list of Catholic leaders that support the proposal can be found here.

“Climate disruption is not just an environmental issue. It is a profound economic, health, social justice, and national security problem with deep moral implications,” concluded Doppelt.  “Our proposal is consistent with calls by six scientific societies for a high-level climate summit. It will serve as a springboard to expand existing resilience building and emission reduction programs, launch new ones, and spur tremendous innovation that reaps great near and long term benefits nationwide.”

Quotes from Some of The Governors That Endorse the Proposal:

"We are seeing the effects of a warming climate in the West. We would welcome a Presidential summit to draw attention to the strategies that can be employed to respond to a warming climate--such as promoting cleaner, domestic energy production and the wise and more efficient use of water," said Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper.

“Many of us who have been involved with environmental causes were pleased to see the President’s renewed focus on climate change in his Inaugural Address and State of the Union. A national dialogue on these issues is already taking place – what we need is to harness that momentum in a formal, organized way, and a national climate summit would do just that. This is one area where leaders from across the political spectrum should be able to sit down and work together to identify solutions,” said Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee.

“Climate change is both a challenge and a jobs opportunity for our states. If we work together, we can lead as a nation by moving towards an economy that takes advantage of the extraordinary potential in green jobs. Building our new clean energy future will put our people to work and invigorate our economy, from construction and manufacturing to engineering and education. A national summit to address our climate challenge is a powerful step in the right direction,” said Vermont Peter Governor Shumlin.

Quotes from Some of the Mayors That Endorse the Proposal:

“Climate change is one of the greatest threats to our future way of life. It is not only impacting our weather patterns, it is affecting our water supplies, forest health and entire ecosystem. Salt Lake City has been working for years to reduce its carbon footprint. It is time for national leadership on this issue and we look forward to engaging with the President and his team on meaningful work to articulate an action plan,” said Mayor Ralph Becker of Salt Lake City, Utah.

“Climate Change is one of the greatest challenges facing humankind in the 21st century.  No one is immune to its effects and we must be diligent in working together to find solutions.  I was heartened to hear the President mention Climate Change during his recent ‘State of the Union’ and the threat it poses to our way of life.  A Climate Change Summit during Barack Obama’s first 100 days of his second term would send a strong message that as a nation we need to act now to address this issue,” said Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt of Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

“Superstorm Sandy brought weather extremes not usually felt in this area of the country.  A Climate Change Summit can kick-start the national conversation that we need to educate the populace about the serious challenges ahead,” said Mayor Ed Pawlowski of Allentown, Pa.

"The City of Sacramento is taking action every day to reduce emissions and adapt to the impacts of climate change that are already occurring in our region. Tackling climate change, however, requires every citizen around the country and around the globe to take action. Our President can be the leader of a powerful movement to reduce the threats from climate change. We stand ready in Sacramento to participate in a national Climate Change Summit, to translate the science into everyday conversations, and to give future generations the same quality of life that we enjoy today," said Mayor Kevin Johnson or Sacramento, CA. 

“Many communities like Eugene are engaged in climate mitigation and adaptation. To get to scale will take the Presidents partnership with American cities and some strategic leveraging. A national summit will bring that conversation to the level of focus that can make real change. We are ready,” said Mayor Kitty Piercy of Eugene, Oregon.

Quote from An Insurance Leader That Endorses the Proposal:

“Extreme weather and climate related impacts are today’s wakeup call about a long term risk that requires immediate solutions such as the summit and community meetings to build resilient communities,” said Frank Nutter, President of the Reinsurance Association of America.

Quotes from Some of The Business Leaders That Endorse the Proposal:

"The positive economic outcomes associated with proactively fighting climate change such as returns on investment in renewable energy, job creation and exportable technology are too great to ignore. ASBC encourages the President to take firm actions to mitigate the negative economic, environmental and social effects of climate change. The Administration should push forward with actions including a summit that engages businesses nationwide in order to achieve greater energy efficiency efforts, along with new rules to limit emissions from existing coal-fired power plants and require federal agencies to use more clean energy," said Richard Eidlin, Policy Director of the American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC), a coalition of businesses and business organizations.

“Investors are hobbled in their ability to value assets by evolving climate disruption and by policy uncertainty. Boston Common Asset Management, with $1.8b in asset under management, urges the President to act swiftly and decisively on climate change in part by hosting a summit linked with community meetings nationwide.  A clear, durable, universal regulatory framework would reduce uncertainty and draw investor capital to such climate-change solutions as clean energy, efficient engines, battery technology and an intelligent power grid, “ said Geeta Aiyer, President, Boston Common Asset Management, LLC

“If we don't address climate change, we are setting ourselves up for further economic hardships, as seen by last year's $100B price tag from extreme weather alone.  The good news is that many businesses and entrepreneurs are already working to capture the opportunity of the clean economy through energy efficiency and low carbon solutions.  A summit to showcase these innovative solutions will inspire more creativity and competition for bolder climate reductions - and help get our country on the path of a better, more prosperous future for all,” said Amy Davidsen, U.S. Executive Director of The Climate Group, which works with corporations in the U.S. and Internationally.  

Quotes from One Of The Farm Leaders That Endorse the Proposal:

"Farmers and ranchers are among those who are most affected by climate

change. NFU is encouraged by the president's remarks and hopes that he

moves to address this challenge publicly as soon as possible by directly engaging farmers and ranchers through a national summit and meetings in communities nationwide," said Jan Ahlen, Government Relations Representative, National Farmers Union.

Quote from Military Leaders That Endorse the Proposal:

"The Pentagon has repeatedly studied the effects of climate change and each time concluded that our national defense is weakened by it. Beating climate change means uniting individuals and institutions from the top and bottom, left and right, military and civil societies. We've done it before, and the president's Climate Summit, linked to regional meetings held by cities, businesses, religious and other organizations, will allow us to work together again to protect ourselves from the current and future impacts of climate change," said Brigadier General (Ret) Steven M. Anderson, US Army.

"One problem that threatens our national security is climate change.  Tackling climate change will take strong, committed leadership....leadership that must start from the top with our President rallying the country with a call for action through a national summit linked with community meetings nationwide....sustained, meaningful and visible action.  Lead and they will come Mr. President," said Lt. General Norm R. Seip, (Ret) USAF, and Senior Mentor USAF.

Quote from Civil Rights & Climate Justice Leaders That Endorse the Proposal:

“Climate change is a civil and human rights issue,” stated NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous. “Communities of color, and low-income communities of all colors, contribute less to greenhouse gas pollution, but suffer more from its impact because we are more likely to live in the impact zones of smoke stacks, hurricanes, and floods. The time for a constructive dialogue is long overdue, and our communities need to be involved.”

Quote from Youth Leaders That Endorse the Proposal:

“The President has promised that he will address climate change for future generations, and we‘re going to hold him to his word.  This is no longer something to argue about; there is a demand from the Earth that we address climate change with sustainable solutions for our survival.  The Summit is a great way to launch a commitment, from communities to the capital, to the youngest and future generations, “ Grant Serrels, iMatter Youth Council representative and federal plaintiff, Age 17

Quote from Some Of The Faith Leaders That Endorse the Proposal:

“As an evangelical Christian, Christ commanded that I love my neighbor as myself. The weather disasters caused by a changing climate affect us all, but they hit people in developing countries the hardest. I believe it is our moral obligation as Christians to support the to clean energy transition taking place around the world. This is why I support the growing call for a national Climate Summit – a kick-off event where the President will join leaders from business, faith, insurance and military groups to engage in an honest and open conversation about how America will address climate change,” said Deb Fikes, Executive Advisor, World Evangelical Alliance.

“If not addressed, climate disruption will threaten the safety of our children and the peaceful co-existence of future generations.  We must come together as people in hope-filled and shared commitment to address this great challenge.  The President, through this summit, can galvanize what we as a nation and world, can and must do, to secure peace for our future,” said Jose Aguto, Legislative Secretary on Sustainable Energy and the Environment, Friends Committee on National Legislation.

“We have to ask the question: What is the legacy we are leaving future generations? We pray that our political leaders will put aside their differences and take action in a bi-partisan manner—we have a moral obligation to ensure that our grandchildren can inherit an Earth that God intended. This is a faith stance for me. St. Francis taught us that God is incarnate in creation and that being in solidarity with all of God’s awesome creation helps us to deepen our relationship with God,” said Patrick Carolan, Executive Director, Franciscan Action Network.


Proposal for a Presidential Summit With America's Communities: Engaging Together in Climate Solutions


During the summer of 2012 many governors and federal agencies issued emergency declarations in response to unprecedented draught, wildfires, and other extreme events. But the real emergency—human activities that are disrupting the Earth’s climate system—was hardly mentioned and continued largely unabated.

Then, just days before the Presidential election punctuated by deafening silence about climate disruption, the Northeast was hammered by Hurricane Sandy.  Our nation has now experiences the tragic impacts of a changing climate including loss of life, physical injury and illnesses, damage to homes, buildings, and infrastructure, personal distress, economic losses, and massive financial costs. 

After the hurricane, President Obama said “climate change is real, is impacted by human behavior and carbon emissions, and that we've got an obligation to future generations to do something about it.” He also said he wants to hold "a conversation across the country" about the problem. Then, in his inaugural address he openly acknowledged that our nation has a moral moral responsibility to future generations to address climate disruption and called for "collective action" to tackle the problem.

The Climate Summit 2013 coalition applauds the President’s statements. We believe the breadth and scope of the impacts and high costs of this year’s extreme weather dramatically increases the importance of holding a national conversation about climate disruption.  The events also underscore the need to redouble our nation’s efforts to prepare for and build resilience to the impacts of a changing climate in a just and equitable manner, while reducing our contribution to the problem by cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

Climate Summit 2013 offers a proposal to address this need: a non-partisan solutions-focused kick-off summit hosted by The President linked with hundreds of action-planning satellite meetings hosted by Governors, Mayors, business, universities, civic organizations, faith organizations, and other nationwide. The events would be designed to rivet national attention on climate disruption, its causes, and most importantly the known solutions with a positive, uplifting, can-do focus that emphasizes the social, economic, and environmental benefits of rapidly scaling up those actions.  Specifically, the kick-off summit and satellite meetings would address focus on:

a) The existing and likely future impacts of climate-disruption and its causes;

b) Proven solutions for preparing for and building resilience to climate impacts, and their many benefits;

c) Proven methods for reducing emissions, and their many benefits; and

d) Strategies for rapidly scaling-up the known solutions, obstacles that prevent action, and means for overcoming them.

The need for an aggressive response to climate disruption is great, and President Obama’s capacity to marshal the energy, commitment, and greatest hopes of Americans for a positive future is vast.

A growing list of Governors, Mayors, business, finance, farm, youth, civil rights and climate justice, faith, environmental and other leaders from across the nation have therefore endorsed the petition found here and more recently signed a letter found here asking President Obama to host a national kick-off solutions focused climate summit linked with action planning satellite meetings in communities nationwide early in his next administration. To sign the letter go to this link:

For an overview of the proposal, go to this link.

Catholics see this as a critical faith issue. Please sign this letter from U.S. Catholics to President Obama.

This Proposal is Consistent with Other Calls for a Presidential Climate Summit

Our call for a Presidential climate summit linked with community meetings nationwide is consistent with and complements a call for a Presidential climate summit made by the American Meteorological Society and five other science organizations found here.