Give the trees what they really want for their birthday — decarbonization. Recently, Rabbi Steven spoke with environmental activist Hans Detweiler for Tu B’Shevat (listen on Contact Chai!). Hans is a member of the Mishkan Sustainability Justice Team, and a longtime organizer, lobbyist, and policymaker fighting to combat climate change. Together with other members of the Mishkan Sustainability Justice Team, Hans has prepared this reading list designed to both brief you on the scope of our present ecological crisis and provide useful, hopeful insights on how you can help turn the tides through decarbonization.


Mishkan Sustainability Justice Team Decarbonization Reading List

We face an unprecedented climate crisis. But there is hope! Together, we are working to reduce our carbon footprint through more sustainable transportation, heating and cooling, and electric consumption. Consult this reading list to learn how you can, too.

Decarbonization Overview
Why is Mishkan’s Sustainability team excited about “electrify everything?” Read this great explanation from energy guru Saul Griffith. Pour a cup of coffee first: this article from Vox is intense and captures the big picture and the urgency.

Decarbonization And Heat Pumps
If you’ve read the Vox article decarbonization, you understand the importance of switching from gas furnaces to heat pumps. Heat pumps that work well throughout a Chicago winter are now available! Consumer Reports asks the question of how well they work in cold climates in the article below, and finds they work well. By the way, if your HVAC contractor says “no,” they are wrong! The sustainability committee can recommend up-to-date firms.

Decarbonization In Chicago
Because Chicago is exempt from Illinois’ building code, it is entirely responsible to develop our own code. This is a great opportunity, as the current code needs a lot of help! Learn more about Chicago’s decarbonization plan here:

Decarbonize Your Home
So you are ready to work on decarbonizing your home? Here’s a great consumer guide to think through all the pieces:

Decarbonization And Justice
Decarbonization is a great challenge. How can we do it with equity? To finish you reading list, here is a moving case study from Pembroke IL about equity and the Heat Pump Revolution in Illinois:

Thank you for taking steps to decarbonize your life! The trees thank you.