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Reader: Save the planet and VOTE 

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On Oct. 8, the [United Nations] Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a report that detailed the effects of current and future climate change and the catastrophic consequences of inaction. The report provides the first comprehensive assessment on the impact of 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit of warming above pre-industrial levels, concluding that we will begin to see dire consequences sooner than expected.

The report indicates that as early as the year 2040, the Earth will experience devastating food and water scarcity, wildfires, floods, extreme heat, tropical cyclones, biodiversity loss and sea level rise. The results will be unprecedented famine, disease, economic upheaval and a severe refugee crisis.

Parallel to this report, we have a White House that has been reversing course on confronting climate change with rollbacks of the Clean Car Standards, Clean Power Plan and methane standards, to name just a few.

Although the report and our nation's current course are especially terrifying when examined together, we are not without hope. The report concludes that we have a 12-year window to reduce warming enough to avert these disasters.

As interns with Defend Our Future, a non-partisan environmental advocacy organization, I see every day how young people are galvanized by the threat climate change poses to our futures. Our generation realizes the fate of our planet is in our hands, and we are ready to fight to protect it.

Our next opportunity to take action to avert climate catastrophe is the upcoming midterm elections on Nov. 6. It's time to make a stand and vote for candidates who will take action on climate.

— Seth Harrison, Colorado State Director, Defend Our Future

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