Conservation

TU’s climate change working group turns five

West slope cutthroat trout. Photo by Chris Hunt

By Bill Lanzoni

TU’s Climate Change Workgroup continues to advocate for its fellow members to help address the threats to trout habit impacted by climate change. Our workgroup was officially formed at the Santa Fe, N.M., 2014 Annual Meeting and included members who shared very different perspectives on climate change.

During this four-year period, climate change concerns have been clearly demonstrated. At least they have been to me who, as an early adopter, accepted the realism that climate change looms as the largest risk to our beloved trout and their environment and it cannot be remediated solely through river habitat restoration.

So why do some members of Trout Unlimited accept climate change and its associated risks, and some do not? We all want a healthy habitat for our trout or why would we be members of our organization, right?

From the beginning, TU has built upon its reputation as an organization of conservation-minded anglers who rely upon sound scientific principles to promote quality trout and salmon fisheries for their intrinsic value as reminders of ecological health. Almost six decades later, TU is over 300,000 members and supporters strong, with over 400 chapters nationwide. And as such, we represent a diversity of views and backgrounds, are influenced and impacted by factors external to the mission of Trout Unlimited, and can find the subject of climate change to be confusing.

There is so much information out there and a lot of disparity between opposition sources that thinking of climate change can give many a headache. And, after all, we simply want to fish in beautiful places and assure the future of fisheries for our grandchildren.

I’ve always looked to Bill Nye the Science Guy to simplify complex science information. After all, we’ve all listened to and relied upon Bill Nye at some point. Bill provides a look into the scientific facts of our climate change challenge in less than five minutes. Take one Bill Nye and relieve your climate change headache!

Bill Lanzoni Life Member of Trout Unlimited has been a member of the Climate Change Workgroup since its founding while serving as the Connecticut NLC. Bill is now retired and an advocate for the Climate Reality Project.