Islanders show they care about climate change

Environmental writer and climate change advocate Bill McKibben sponsored a 10-10-10 Work Party through his organization,, to show that people all around the world are concerned about climate change.

In Oak Harbor a group gathered to pull non-native plants from the city’s three-mile bike and pedestrian trail.

“It was a beautiful day for a waterfront work party, with the emphasis on “party’,” said Maribeth Crandell, Oak Harbor’s environmental coordinator. “A big thank you is due to Little Ceasar’s who donated pizza and Albertson’s who donated drinks. There were pet poop picker-uppers and reusable bags for give-away.”

The Maylor’s Point extension to the Oak Harbor Waterfront Trail is on Navy property. After Sept. 11, 2001, it was closed due to tightened security but was re-opened to the public last year. The city Parks Department re-graded and graveled the roadway that had suffered from erosion. Pet poop stations were installed along with an interpretive sign for visitors.

“The view across the water to the City Marina and downtown are striking, but the trails surroundings are wild and wonderful,” Crandell said. “A forest on one side, water on the other and a long sand spit draw waterfowl and otter to this non-motorized trail. Walkers, joggers and cyclists can now enjoy miles of Oak Harbor Bay waterfront.”

Neighboring communities also took part in the Work Party. Mount Vernon had a compost and worm bin workshop and a weatherization class. Anacortes installed a bike rack, planted native plants and helped a new community supported farm get off to a good start. Langley hosted at gathering sponsored by Transition Whidbey.

For people who are interested in getting involved locally, there are a few groups that are already going strong. Transition Whidbey is based in Langley, Climate Stewards is an Island County WSU Extension program and Skagit Beat the Heat is a group based in Anacortes.

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