As Riverside residents, we experience the beauty and importance of the natural environment every day. Riverside and nature go hand in hand, and one cannot be thought of without the other. As the privileged beneficiaries of this special place, I believe we have an obligation to speak out on behalf of healthy environments and communities everywhere.

Despite overwhelming scientific consensus to the contrary, the president-elect has called human-caused climate change a hoax. He has vowed to dismantle the Paris Agreement that sets targets to reverse the worst effects of global warming — which nearly 200 countries agreed to last December – and has tapped a climate-change skeptic to oversee the transition of the EPA. This represents an impending assault on the environment, and could lead to irreversible damage to Mother Earth.

Through Architects Advocate, a grassroots organization I founded with over 150 architecture firms nationwide who agree on the need for Action on Climate Change, we are writing letters to each incoming member of Congress and the president-elect, imploring them to build on the Paris Climate Agreement instead of dismantling it.

If you are a parent or grandparent, and would prefer that the environment your children or grandchildren will inhabit will be a healthy one, I urge you to do the same. Speak out on behalf of reason. Speak out on behalf of healthy communities. Speak out on behalf of prudence.

Wisdom, it turns out, is a non-partisan issue as well. “To remain silent when they should protest makes cowards of men.” Abraham Lincoln on courage, the most American virtue of all.

Tom Jacobs