Protecting Florida for the Future

Climate Scientists Hold Solutions Summit, Request Meeting with Governor Scott to Report on Solutions

Tallahassee, FL – Scientists, business leaders, local elected officials and the public are asking to meet in person with Florida Governor Rick Scott to review a comprehensive overview of climate change solutions.

The following letter, signed by over 50 of the participants, is based on the suggestions of a diverse range of experts and citizens who attended last week’s “standing room only” Climate Science & Solutions Summit at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg – was delivered to the Governor today.

The Summit was initiated by the scientists who met with Governor Scott in August. The Summit itself and the resulting Solutions Agenda is a response to Governor Scott’s repeated requests – both before and after the meeting – that he’s a “solutions guy” and wanted them to bring him solutions.

This is an opportunity for the Governor to meet and take a real interest in this comprehensive overview of climate solution options, provided by scientists, business leaders, elected officials and the public.


Florida Governor Rick Scott has said he is “is not a scientist” and is “not convinced” of the science of man-made climate change.

  • On July 15th, ten scientists sent a letter to Governor Scott requesting a meeting to talk about climate change.
  • On August 19th, five scientists met with the Governor.
    • The scientists offered to answer questions on climate science.
    • The Governor did not ask any science-related questions, but he did repeatedly say that he’s a “solutions guy” and wanted the scientists to bring him solutions.
  • On September 18th, over forty scientists sent a follow-up letter to the Governor, thanking him for the meeting, and agreeing with his call for solutions, suggesting that a Climate Science & Solutions Summit be held to allow scientists to provide input on a plan to mitigate and adapt to climate change.
  • On October 6th, Eckerd College hosted a Climate Science & Solutions Summit, which drew more than 250 attendees, including lawmakers, scientists, students, and citizens.  The group offered a plethora of suggestions for climate change solutions; which are outlined in the letter below.


October 16, 2014


The Honorable Rick Scott

Governor, State of Florida

The Capitol

400 S. Monroe St.

Tallahassee, FL 32301


Dear Governor Scott:

Last week, approximately 250 people attended the Climate Science and Solutions Summit at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg. As the Tampa Bay Times reported, the summit, which was directly inspired by your August meeting with a group of leading climate experts, “brought together scientists, government officials and entrepreneurs to discuss what has worked and what has not as the atmosphere and oceans heat up.”

Although you couldn’t make it to the summit, you have asked for “solutions”. It is our aim to bring forward the optimal ways to deal with the challenges to Florida stemming from climate change. Along those lines, we respectfully request the opportunity to brief you on the carefully-crafted solutions we discussed at the Climate Science and Solutions Summit. These include:

  • Limiting carbon pollution by:
    • developing a strong plan for meeting the EPA’s Clean Power Plan standards,
    • ramping up energy efficiency measures,
    • instituting policies that encourage solar energy and electric vehicles (e.g., car charging stations, development of battery storage),
    • increasing public transportation initiatives (e.g., Greenlight Pinellas, Rail),
    • developing cellulosic biofuels.
  • Prioritizing statewide policy measures that emphasize:
    • competition among energy resources to ensure the lowest cost to consumers,
    • aggressive efficiency standards and goals, such as energy benchmarking, auditing and transparency work,
    • an end to the practice of 2-year payback screens for conservation goals,
    • abatement of the Tangible Personal Property Tax on leased solar equipment,
    • innovative financing mechanisms for energy efficiency and solar power (e.g., Property Assessed Clean Energy – PACE; and Community Development Finance Institution – CDFI),
    • mandatory, ambitious Renewable Portfolio Standards,
    • repeal of nuclear cost recovery provisions,
    • third-party Power Purchase Agreements, and
  • Instituting mitigation measures in the areas of:
    • transportation,
    • wetlands enhancement,
    • weatherization,
    • LED street lighting.
  • Adopting adaptation solutions such as:
    • planning for sea-level rise (e.g., the South Florida Regional Climate Compact, and the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council),
    • developing robust building energy codes,
    • addressing energy resilience and
    • building solar-ready roofs.
  • Incorporating educational opportunities such as:
    • public hearings,
    • integration of climate science into K-12 curriculum,
    • advancing public transportation,
    • forming a Civilian Conservation Corps, and
    • prioritizing initiatives to encourage people to buy locally and consume “lower on the food chain.
  • Promoting technology and career opportunities in:
    • manufacturing,
    • solar,
    • agriculture, and
    • retooling and innovation.
  • Implementing measures aimed at reducing public health risks, such as asthma and pulmonary diseases, stemming from combustion of fossil fuels.
  • Supporting academic resources, such as the Florida Climate Institute.

We strongly believe that these measures and more, taken together, would provide real, effective, timely, market-based and cost-effective solutions to enable Florida, known to be ground zero for climate change, to take in protecting residents and businesses from the worst affects of climate change while reducing the carbon pollution driving it.

We are excited to present these solutions to you. We welcome the opportunity to answer any questions you might have, and look forward to your response.




James & Brooke Anderson

301 41st Ave, St. Pete Beach, FL 33706


Dr. Donald Axelrad

6457 Fitz Ln, Tallahassee, FL 32311


Melissa & Jason Baldwin

7403 Alafia Ridge Loop, Riverview, FL 33569


Derek Anthony Bedami

4721 W Wallcraft Ave, Tampa, FL 33611


Kelly Benjamin

Climate Organizer, Physicians for Social Responsibility

301 E Lambright St, Tampa, FL 33604


Dr. Henry Briceno

Florida International University/SERC

11200 SW 8th St, OE#148, Miami, FL 33199


Joling Campo

4310 39th St S, St. Petersburg, FL 33711


Chris Castro

Sustainability Program Manager and Senior Energy Advisor,

City of Orlando

2502 Montana St, Orlando, FL 32803


Jeff Chanton

Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science, Florida State University

117 N Woodward Ave Suite 102, Tallahassee, FL 32306


Melissa L. Crogle

3399 Mermoor Dr #306, Palm Harbor, FL. 34685


Shayla Dougher

221 Whitesand Ct, Casselberry, FL 32707


Edyta Dowksza

1731 Kirtley Dr, Brandon, FL 33511


Karen Elfallah

6070 Oakhurst Dr, Seminole, FL 33772


Robert G. Ellingson

Professor, Dept of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science,

Florida State University

P.O. Box 3064520, Tallahassee, FL 32306


Elizabeth Forys

Professor of Environmental Science & Biology,

Eckerd College

4200 54th Ave S, St. Petersburg, FL 33713


Rick Gilbert

Vice President, Solar Source

10840 Endeavour Way, Largo, FL 33777


Susan Glickman

Florida Director Southern Alliance for Clean Energy

PO Box 310, Indian Rocks Beach, FL 33785


Jude W. Grosser

Professor, Citrus Research and Education Center,

University of Florida

700 Experiment Station Road, Lake Alfred, FL 33850


Guy Hancock, DVM, MEd

11371 122nd Ter, Largo, FL 33778


Peter W. Harlem

10225 Montego Bay Dr., Cutler Bay, FL


Mary Beth Hartman

Center for Environmental Studies,

Florida Atlantic University

3200 College Ave DW-313, Davie, FL 33314


David Hastings

Professor, Marine Science and Chemistry,

Eckerd College

4200 54th Ave S, St. Petersburg, FL 33713


Dr. Brian K. Haus

Professor, Dept. of Ocean Sciences-

Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences,

University of Miami

4600 Rickenbacker Cswy, Miami, FL 33149


Caitlyn Hayes

4200 54th Ave S Campus Box #909, St. Petersburg, FL 33711


James W Jones

Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Florida Climate Institute,

University of Florida1741 Museum Rd, Gainesville, FL 32611


Robert B. Keim

Advisor, UU Ministry for Earth

6010 CR 634, Bushnell, FL 33513


Amy C. Kelly

154 Carlyle Dr, Palm Harbor, FL 34683


Christa Kirby, Ph.D.

1111 Spencer Ave, Clearwater, FL 33756


Ben Kirtman

Professor and Associate Dean for Research,

University of Miami

4600 Rickenbacker Cswy, Miami, FL 33149


Kara Korona

2911 Forestwood Dr, Seffner, FL 33584


Karen Langbehn

PhD Candidate, University of South Florida

470 3rd St S Unit 715, St. Petersburg, FL 33701


Lisa Lanza

2043 San Marino Way S, Clearwater, FL 33763


Dr. David Letson

Professor- Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences,

University of Miami

4600 Rickenbacker CSWY, Miami FL 33149


Barbara Letvin

1219 Hominy Hill Dr, Trinity, Florida 34655


Janet C. Long

Commissioner, Pinellas County Board of County Commissioners

315 Court St, Clearwater, FL 33756


Dr. J. William Louda

Scientist Emeritus, Environmental Sciences Program,

Florida Atlantic University

777 Glades Rd, Boca Raton, FL 33431


Timothy A. Martin

Professor, School of Forest Resources and Conservation,

University of Florida

PO Box 110410, Gainesville, FL 32611


Vasubandhu Misra,

Associate Professor, Dept. of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Science, Florida State University

Co-Director, Florida Climate Institute, FSU

2000 Levy Ave, Building A, Suite 292, Tallahassee, FL 32306


Thomas J. Morgan Jr.

Assistant in Medicine, Florida State University

600 W College Ave, Tallahassee, FL 32306


Jack Nazario

Commissioner, City of Belleair Bluffs

100 Bluff View Dr, Belleair Bluffs, FL


Karl Nurse

Council Member, City of St. Petersburg

P.O. Box 2842, St. Petersburg, FL 33731


John H. Parker,

Professor Emeritus of Environmental Science and Chemistry,

Florida International University

11200 SW 8th St, Miami, FL 33174


Dolores Paterno

5301 13th Ave N, St. Petersburg, FL 33710


Ashley Wilson Pimley

830 Lantana Ave, Clearwater Beach, FL 33767


William J. Reid

1421 18th Ave N, St. Petersburg, FL 33704


Darden Rice

Council Member, City of St. Petersburg

PO Box 812, St. Petersburg, FL 33731


Kathleen Kay Riley

1514 10th Ave N, St. Petersburg, FL 33705


Lynn Ringenberg, M.D.

President, Physicians for Social Responsibility/Florida

PO Box 13901, Tampa, FL 33681


Sandra Ripberger

7412 Riverview Dr, Bradenton, FL 34209


Zoë Shribman

54th Ave S, St. Petersburg, FL 33711


Brian Soden

Professor, University of Miami

4600 Rickenbacker Cswy, Miami, FL 33149


Claire A. Stiles, Ph.D.

Professor Emerita, Eckerd College

2577 69th Ave S, St. Petersburg, FL 33712


Nicole Torres

Environmental Studies Student

6975 15th Ave N, St. Petersburg, FL 33710


John Van Leer

Professor, University of Miami

4600 Rickenbacker Cswy, Miami, FL 33149


Laura Wetzel

Professor of Marine Science, Eckerd College

4200 54th Ave S, St. Petersburg, FL 33711


Katie Erica Wheeler

Eckerd College Student

45 Old Pecos Ln, Santa Fe, NM 87508


Robert White

2407 Needham Dr, Valrico, FL 33596