Scientific evidence for warming of the climate system is unequivocal. “Climate change” refers to a long-period broad range of changes our planet is experiencing as a consequence of this warming, including rising sea levels, shrinking mountain glaciers, accelerating ice melt, and shifts in plant blooming times. Warming also manifests in “weather”, our localized day-to-day experiences of heat or cold, wind or calm, and rain or aridity.
The geography of the United States has always had associated with it certain regional risks of extreme weather; the west and southwest have histories of periodic drought, the midwest of tornadic activity, and the southeast of hurricane activity. Warming increases the risks of experiencing some of these events, if not all, and fuels more frequent and punishing occurrences than have ever been experienced. Looking into our past we know that the human and economic costs of these extreme events can be staggering. By not responding aggressively to warming, Congress is putting the future of our country at increased risk.
This artwork highlights severe drought conditions and is the first in a series of artworks on climate change. The central figures were appropriated from William-Adolphe Bouguereau’s 1874 artwork entitled L’Orage (The Storm). Each painting in this series will have children as the focal point as it is their future that is dependent upon the climate change policy decisions made today.