The Clean Water Blog

By U.S. Geological Survey [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Manatees in Massachusetts???

Well, Labor Day is behind us and fall is here, unofficially.   What stands out for me this summer is the weirdness of the weather and...manatees! It is official:  we have just experienced the warmest summer yet -- NASA has confirmed that and is predicting that 2016 will be the warmest year on record, on track to surpass 2015 which previously held the title.

Additionally, this summer was the driest on record for Boston, with under 4" of rain in June, July and August. And my poor garden is hurting, as are our region's farmers.

The weather definitely has me off-balance and concerned, but what really caught my attention? The recent manatee sighting off the coast of Cape Cod. That's right, an 8-foot long manatee -- which typically makes its home in the warm waters of Florida -- was seen in the waters off Chatham in late August.

Experts are not convinced that the manatee's presence so far north is related to the climate crisis, but it adds to the overall sense that we are experiencing  the unpredictable and the unexpected as the climate crisis continues to play out in our region.

For me, this summer adds urgency to the battle for our clean energy future. The good news: the state's Supreme Judicial Court has recently reaffirmed our state's legal mandates set by the Global Warming Solutions Act to reduce carbon pollution 25% by 2020 and at least 80% by mid-century.  

That's right, our courts have upheld our commitments to battle climate change and the worst of its impacts, and here's an easy way you can help. Send a message today to Governor Baker urging Massachusetts to get on track to meet our climate mandates through pricing carbon.

I like manatees, but I also like living above sea level, and this weather has me worried. Let's price carbon in Massachusetts to ensure our communities have a safe climate and a livable future.