Rand became involved with the Norman Chapter of the Citizens Climate Lobby in 2012.
“I found out about them because I was watching one of U.N. climate meetings online,” she said. “I was also following Twitter at the time and seeing what was tweeted out, and I ran across Citizens Climate Lobby.”
Oklahoma’s economy is driven by oil and gas. Some of the state’s elected leaders refer to climate change (aka global warming) as a hoax, but Rand said it’s important to continue to raise the issue.
“We’re facing climate change just like everybody else,” she said. “We’ve had serious problems with heat and the drought and the wildfires.”
Rand is convinced ordinary people are becoming aware of the problem.
“I think people are listening,” she said. “I think people are realizing that climate change is real. People look around and see the difference in when plants bloom. Extreme weather events have been happening everywhere, so there’s really no escaping it. The science on it is clear and has been clear for a long time.”
Rand believes it’s important to reach out to policymakers.
“We need to speak to everyone if we want to change policies — we need members of the Senate and members of Congress if we want to solve the problem,” she said.
Jim Long, chair of the Sierra Club Red Earth Group, said several Norman and Moore members attended the rally Tuesday at the Capitol. Red Earth member Joel Olson, a retired NOAA meteorologist from Moore, also spoke.
“Global Warming is a fact and can be measured,” Olson said. “The number that describes it is called the annual global mean temperature. And every year since 1976, year after year for 37 years, the mean temperature has been above average.”
Olson said global warming is a result of releasing too much CO2 into the air.