Department of Environment Secretary Summers marks Read Across Maryland month with students at The Siena School in Silver Spring

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Samantha Kappalman or
Adrienne Diaczok
(410) 537-3003
samantha.kappalman@maryland.gov
adrienne.diaczok@maryland.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Department of Environment Secretary Summers marks Read Across Maryland month with students at The Siena School in Silver Spring

Climate change and its impacts discussed

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(SILVER SPRING, MD)  March 12, 2014 – Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) Secretary Robert M. Summers visited with students at The Siena School in Silver Spring today to celebrate Read Across Maryland month. The Secretary read excerpts from “The Magic School Bus and The Climate Challenge” to fourth -and-fifth grade students in teacher Jennifer Sanzone’s class. The Secretary discussed climate change and why the earth is getting warmer with the youngsters and encouraged them to be a part of the solution.

March marks Read Across Maryland month. An offshoot of the National Education Association’s Read Across America initiative, Read Across Maryland is sponsored by the Maryland State Education Association. The program encourages students to read at least 30 minutes for 30 days beginning on March 2, the birthday of beloved children’s author Dr. Seuss.

MORE INFORMATION: The Siena School offers an educational program for bright, college-bound students who are challenged by language-based learning differences such as dyslexia. The program is designed for students with mild to moderate needs who experience a discrepancy between their intellectual abilities and academic achievement.

CORE FACTS:

  • Ninety Seven percent of climate scientists have concluded human-caused climate change is happening.
  • Climate change will affect areas of Maryland differently. Most areas will likely experience heavier rains, stronger storms, more frequent droughts and more extreme heat waves. Coastal areas will also experience the effects of rising sea levels. Marylanders can prepare for climate change and assist in saving energy by:
    • Using energy-saver light bulbs, such as compact fluorescents.
    • Purchasing Energy Star appliances, electronics and lighting.
    • Unplugging all electronics when not in use, such as: cell phone charger, TV, toaster, coffeemaker and computer.
    • Installing ceiling fans, window fans and whole-house fans as a low-energy way to cool the home during summer months.
    • Upgrading your heating and cooling system with an energy efficient one, including a programmable thermostat.
    • Cleaning the lint filter on your dryer for higher efficiency, or hanging your clothes outside on a line to dry (or inside on a rack).
    • Signing up for renewable energy through your electric company.
    • Weatherproofing your home, sealing cracks and gaps to prevent energy from escaping.
    • Opting out of paper catalogs, phone books and other “junk” mail.
    • Buying your produce locally to decrease the amount of vehicle miles that your food has to travel.
    • Walking or bicycling short distances rather than driving.
    • Using public transportation or carpool for long trips.
    • Taking advantage of telecommuting.
    • Combining trips to the grocery store, library and other places into one.
    • Landscaping with native trees and plants, and installing rain gardens to reduce the amount of impervious surface on your property.
    • View more tips

QUOTES:
"Under Governor Martin O’Malley’s leadership, Maryland is taking significant steps to address our contribution to climate change and prepare for its impacts. Under the Governor’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan, Maryland will reduce greenhouse gases 25 percent by the year 2020 and our adaptation plan describes actions being taken to prepare for sea level rise and a warmer climate.

It is crucial that every Marylander – young and old – understands how climate change is affecting them and the simple actions they can take to mitigate the impacts of climate change and make our state and nation healthier for generations to come."
Robert M. Summers, Secretary, Maryland Department of the Environment

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

Maryland’s Climate Change Plan
Read Across Maryland
The Siena School 

IMAGES:  For more images of today’s event visit our Flickr page.

MDE MISSION:
Our mission is to protect and restore the quality of Maryland’s air, water, and land resources, while fostering smart growth, a thriving and sustainable economy and healthy communities.

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