Dear Mr. President, Senators, Congresspersons, Governors, State Legislators, and local government officials: Climate change is real.

Dear Mr. President, Senators, Congresspersons, Governors, State Legislators, and local government officials:

Climate change is real. We, the undersigned alumni of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, urge you to protect our nation, preserve the integrity and purity of our planet, and ensure the safety of the human race by confronting climate change: studying it, addressing it, and conquering it.

Prior to our modern era, world temperature was in a stable cycle for 10,000 years. Since 1880, our planet’s average temperature has rocketed up 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit: a radical, rapid increase. Without concerted correction, our world’s temperature is projected to rise between 3 and 8 degrees by the year 2100. While easy for us to ignore from day to day, this small worldwide temperature increase has massive consequences for weather and life. It is enough to push our planet’s delicately balanced systems out of control.

Higher average temperatures in polar regions set off a chain reaction: polar ice shelves melt, becoming less reflective water surfaces. The earth reflects less heat, which further increases global temperatures and melts more ice. New, inconsistent local weather patterns, with temperatures and rainfall shifting from the norms, have begun to hammer US and foreign lands. Billion-dollar weather disasters have doubled since the 1990s. Oceans are rising and becoming more acidic and hostile to life. We’re building coastal solutions to combat rising seas, and they come with astronomical price tags. Plant and animal species are stressed by extreme weather, and die-offs have begun.

Humans are the cause of this warming trend. Civilizations have been burning more and more carbon-based fuels since we discovered fire. Before the Industrial Revolution in the 1800s, the small amount we burned made little difference to our planet. But humans are vigorously successful — and hungry for energy. Today, we convert carbon-based fuel (oil, coal, natural gas, and more) into 100 million tons of carbon dioxide a DAY. While CO2 is innocent on a small scale, this everyday gas has been careening away from its proper equilibrium in our atmosphere. Carbon dioxide insulates the earth, so when there is too much of it, we get too warm. Then sea levels rise, extreme weather events increase, and droughts and floods become more common. Runaway climate change could ruin many of the treasured parts of our world and send hundreds of millions into increased suffering. This is an expensive, painful, and inhumane path to go down.

We can halt this trend. American scientific prowess, skill with technology, and drive for innovation can leverage our national desire to do what is right. What is right is to guard the one precious planet we have been given, and to protect humanity from disaster.

As alumni of the most renowned Science and Technology high school in the United States, we were taught to understand scientific data, apply the scientific method, and meet extraordinary claims with scientific skepticism.

We are convinced that America must act, changing laws to reduce fossil fuel use, growing the renewable energy sector, and working with all nations to set goals to reduce carbon emissions worldwide. We must encourage every citizen to heed this urgent call and support immediate climate change action.

Signed,

Graduates of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology

Alexandria, VA

August 2017

Iman Abdikarim, Class of 2013

Annie Abraham, Class of 2016

Brian S. Allard, Class of 1998

J. Kenyatta Alston, Esq., Class of 1991

Michael F. Alt, DVM, Class of 1994

Temor Amin-Arsala, M.S., Class of 2007

Shalini Anand, Class of 1996

Mary Carol Anderson M.S., Class of 2008

Miho (Diamond) Anderson, Class of 1992

Tyler Anderson, Class of 2003

Benjamin E. Andre, Class of 2014

Peter Andringa, Class of 2016

Rafael A. Arancibia, Jr., Class of 1995

Britt Argow, Ph.D., Class of 1990

Nick Babyak, Class of 2011

Narotham Badrish, Class of 2012

Marla M. Ballenger, Class of 1989

Adrian Banard, M.S., Class of 1993

Pichchenda Bao, Class of 1998

Noah Bardash, Class of 2013

Jaimee T. Basanes, Class of 1998

Craig Bates, M.D., M.S., Class of 1992

Derek Bathrick, Esq., Class of 1992

Kim Baugher, Class of 1992

Claire T. Bea, Class of 2004

Megan Behm, Class of 2007

Rhamy Y. Belayachi, Class of 2016

Cate (Wardell) Berard, Class of 1997

Michael Berard, Class of 1998

Elizabeth Sutherland Beverly, Class of 1990

Roshni Bhasin, Class of 2014

Rucha Bhat, Class of 2013

Amy Biehl, Class of 1992

Lynne Bishop, Class of 1991

Joshua R. Blake, Class of 2001

Christine Bobal, Class of 2003

Kat Bolstad, Ph.D., Class of 1997

Caroline (Schwarm) Brooks, Class of 1997

Shaye Brotherton, MBA, Class of 1997

Jennifer Lorelei Brown, Class of 1989

Nicole Brown, Class of 2010

Elise Bui, M.A., Class of 2005

Anne E Bunner, Ph.D., Class of 1998

Kristen Burke, MEM, Class of 1989

William Burns, MCS, Class of 2002

Meghan T. Cade, LCSW, Class of 1998

Anthony Cann, Ph.D., Class of 1999

Ashleigh B. Cannon, Class of 1990

Patricia Carcamo, DVM, Class of 1997

Elizabeth Carlson, Ph.D., Class of 1997

Jennifer Carnahan, M.D., MPH, Class of 1992

Anne Carney, Class of 1991

Victoria Carroll, M.D., Class of 1997

Deb Shih Carstoiu, M.A., Class of 1992

Michael S. Casey, Class of 2007

Hannah Catlow, Class of 2008

Ben Chadwick, Class of 1995

Pooja Chandrashekar, Class of 2015

Sally Chang, L.Ac., DNBAO, Class of 1992

Mason Chee, Class of 2014

Srikanth Chelluri, Class of 2014

Cynthia Chen, Class of 2012

Deborah Chen, Class of 2006

Allen Cheng, Class of 2016

Saroj Chintakrindi, Class of 2016

Grace Cho, Ph.D., Class of 1995

Theresa M. Christian, Class of 2004

Alethea P. Christon, Class of 1992

Lucy Chu, Class of 2014

Teague Clare, Class of 1999

Emily Cleland, Class of 2016

Shea Connelly, Class of 2005

Jennifer Connor Naylor, M.A./MSW, Class of 1996

Rev. Dawn Skjei Cooley, Class of 1989

Diane Cooper-Gould, Class of 1992

Melissa Cope, Class of 1991

Brendan Corbett, Class of 2011

Jason Corner, Ph.D., Class of 1991

Andrew Corzo, Class of 2014

Jonathan Corzo, Class of 2011

Danielle Cotner, Class of 2003

Suzanne Coyle, M.A., Class of 1993

Gretchen Dains, Class of 1991

Eduard G. Danalache, Class of 2015

Susan M. Danewitz, M.A., Class of 1992

Robert Daugherty, Class of 1995

Chris Davis, Class of 1996

Kerry Davis, M.S., Class of 1992

Andrew De Martino, Class of 1999

Kaia Dekker, MBA, Class of 2002

Jeremie Delvoie, MBA, Class of 1995

Chris DeSantis, Class of 1989

Michele C. Dodge, Class of 1992

Jagan Doodala, Class of 2016

Courtney Dressing, Ph.D., Class of 2006

Michael Dunn, J.D., Class of 1998

James Eagle, Class of 2014

Ryan A. Early, Esq., Class of 1989

Serena Eley, Class of 1998

Charles Ellis, Class of 1996

Amy Corner Erwin, M.S., Class of 1989

Suzy Escalante, MBA, Class of 1995

Ziyi Fan, Class of 2011

Jennifer Fang, Class of 2015

Amani Farooque, Class of 2013

Meera Fickling, MEM, Class of 2004

Dawn L. Findley, Class of 1994

Julie A. Fitch, Class of 1990

Ashley Fitting, Class of 1997

Sara Anne Fleming, M.D., Class of 1994

Daniel Fontenot, Class of 2014

Kate Leonard Fordyce, Esq., Class of 1999

Elizabeth Garrett Forster, Class of 1991

Marcie Foster, Class of 2001

Stephen S. Francis, Ph.D., Class of 1998

Andrea Frome, Ph.D., Class of 1992

Sairisheel R. Gabbireddy, Class of 2015

Priyal Gandhi, Class of 2013

Hannah Gaudet, Class of 2015

Emma Gee, Class of 2014

Conrad Gehrki, Class of 2015

Jennifer Gibson, M.S., Class of 1995

Anthara Gnanakumar, Class of 2016

Suhas Gondi, Class of 2013

Eugenia E. Gratto, Class of 1990

M. Morgan Green, Class of 1995

Ilana Greenstein, J.D., Class of 1994

Zoey Greer, Class of 2009

Nihar Gudiseva, Class of 2015

Lisa Guli, MPH, Class of 1992

Salman H. Guliwala, Class of 2015

Wendy Guo, Class of 2014

Atul Gupta, Class of 1995

Shohini Gupta, Class of 2016

Shrey Gupta, Class of 2016

Megan Gustafson, Ph.D., J.D., Class of 1995

Séain Gutridge, Class of 1989

Raewyn Haines, Class of 2015

Melissa Breglio Hajj, Class of 1995

Don Halcombe, Class of 1992

Vanessa Hall, MEM, Senior Experience 1988

Christopher Hanna, Class of 1992

Matt Hanson, Class of 2004

Andrew E Harasty, MBA, Class of 1989

Anthony M. Harrison, Ph.D., Class of 1994

Gordon Hart, Class of 2013

Vivian Harvey, Class of 2009

Daniel Haspel, Class of 1999

Bryan Guido Hassin, M.S., MBA, Class of 1997

Terrell Hatzilias, Ph.D., Class of 2002

Andrew P. Hayes, Ph.D., Class of 1999

Yun Wynn Heh, Esq., Class of 2003

Robert Heittman, Senior Experience 1988

Eric L. Helvey, Class of 1989

Antoinette D. Hillian, Ph.D., Class of 1996

David Hish, Class of 1991

Aaron Ho, Class of 2016

Alexander Hoganson, Class of 2016

Anne Holsinger, Class of 2005

Sarah Holt, Class of 1994

Joyce Hong, Class of 2016

Lara Howerton, M.A., Class of 2009

Jocelyn Huang, Class of 2014

Robert Huddleston, Class of 2013

Erica Hughes, Ph.D., Class of 1998

Matt Huo, Class of 2016

Junyoung Hwang, Class of 2016

Maran Ilanchezhian, Class of 2014

Catherine Im, Class of 2016

Catharina J. Jacknow, Class of 1989

Disha Jain, Class of 2016

Katherine James, M.S., Ph.D., Class of 1992

Karin C. Japikse, Ph.D., Class of 1991

John Jarvis, Esq., Class of 2006

Jennifer L. Jesse, Class of 2003

Eric Johnson, M.A., MLIS, Class of 1989

Sheryl Johnson, M.Div., ThM, M.S., Class of 1990

Diane-Marie Johnston, Class of 1998

Audra Yuki-Wright Jones, DDS, Class of 1990

Amrutha Kadali, Class of 2016

Amalia Kane, M.D., Class of 2008

Joseph W. Kang, M.A., Class of 1998

Josh Kanownik, MBA, Class of 1997

Maxinder Kanwal, Class of 2013

Praveen H. Kathpal, Class of 1998

Rosalie A. Kendall, Class of 2004

Julie Kennedy, M.A., Class of 1997

Anjali Khanna, Class of 2016

Daniel G. Kim, Esq., Class of 1992

Yena Kim, Class of 2011

Kelly Kirschner, Class of 2009

Tracy Klayton, M.D., Class of 1999

Matthew Klein, Class of 2001

Kate Spilker Klusman, Class of 1989

Luke Knepper, MBA Candidate, Class of 2010

Clare Murphy Konrad, MPP, Class of 2004

Harrison Krat, Class of 2000

Olena Krawciw, ATP, Class of 1998

Scott Kreidler, M.Eng., Class of 1997

Casey Krieg, LCSW, Class of 1996

Nicola Kubzdela, Class of 2016

Ben Kuebrich, Class of 2006

Maya Kuttan, Esq., Class of 1999

Christopher Lance, Class of 1992

Michael Lange, Class of 1992

Lauren Duffy Lastowka, Class of 1999

Melissa Le, Class of 2014

Adrian LeBuffe, Class of 1992

Doyle Lee, Class of 2016

Jeremy Lehrer, CFA, CPWA, CAIA, Class of 1990

Rachel Lei, M.A., Class of 1996

Elise Lepple, Class of 1999

Samuel A. Leven, Esq., Class of 2003

Alexandra Levy, M.A., Class of 2005

Katherine Lin, Class of 2011

Casey Little, M.S., Class of 2007

Jeffrey Liu, Class of 2016

Kevin Livingstone, Class of 2016

Patricia Llana, M.S., Class of 1992

Karen (Johnson) Logan, M.A., Class of 1992

Erica Lonesome, Class of 1992

Natalie Lubsen, Class of 2009

Kristin Luery, Ph.D., Class of 1999

Lydia Luu, Class of 2011

Kim MacDonald, Class of 2004

Matthew Mah, Ph.D., Class of 1998

Ana Malhotra, Class of 2015

Arjun Malhotra, Class of 2013

Rishi Malhotra, M.S., Class of 2012

Swathi Manchikanti, MSPH, Class of 2006

Nihita Manem, Class of 2014

George Marino, Class of 2012

Caitlin Marshall, Class of 2004

John Maushammer, Class of 1989

Wendy McClellan Anderson, Class of 1992

Lureta McDermott, Class of 1989

Brian McGinty, Class of 1989

Katharine McLaughlin, Class of 2003

Kassandra McMahon, M.IT., Class of 1990

Edward McPike, Jr., Class of 1989

Katharine Gramlich Meddles, M.D., Class of 1999

Alexandra Mellis, Class of 2010

Cheryl Mensah, Class of 2016

Rebecca Merriman-Goldring, Class of 2015

Samantha Metcalf, MCRP, LEED AP, Class of 1992

Tamara Metz, MLIS, Class of 1999

Madeline Meyers, Class of 2015

Aazrin Mir, Class of 2016

Soumya Mishra, Class of 2014

Jessica A. Morgan, M.S., Class of 1993

Wendy Morgan, Ph.D., Class of 1991

Karen Morrison, Class of 2009

Jennifer Morse, M.S., Ph.D., Class of 1993

Kinsey Moser, Class of 2014

Calvin Muramoto, Class of 2016

Dan Mudrick, M.D., MPH, Class of 1992

Lance Murashige, J.D., Class of 2004

Claire Murphy, Class of 2014

Michelle Hong Mussen, M.A., Class of 1990

Patrick Mutchler, Ph.D., Class of 2007

Priyanka Nair, Class of 2014

Rishi Nair, Class of 2016

Harshita Nangunuri, Class of 2014

Julie Napear, Class of 2001

Janet Arnst Napier, Class of 1995

Jane Natoli, Class of 1999

Laura Nawojchik, M.S., MLIS, Class of 1996

Connor Fleming Neiderer, Class of 2008

David Neuberger, Class of 2012

Cara Newlon, Class of 2010

Jennifer Newsome, Class of 1998

Joe Nissen, Class of 2013

Carrie Nixon, Esq., Class of 1992

Amy (Rosinski) Novak, P.E., Class of 1995

Ren O’Connor, Class of 2008

Kelley O’Leary, Class of 2008

Frank D. Olechnowicz, Ph.D., Class of 2007

Christine Olsen, Ph.D., Class of 1994

Shay O’Reilly, M.Div., Class of 2007

Noa Ovadia, Class of 2010

Bridget Park, Class of 2015

Janice Park, Class of 2011

Jennie Parnell, Class of 1995

Maureen Gramaglia Passey, Class of 1997

Felicia Patch, M.D., Class of 1999

Surbhi Patel, Class of 2016

Kenneth Patricio, Class of 1995

Kripa Patwardhan, Class of 2004

John Pentakalos, Class of 2015

Kay Perry, Ph.D., Class of 1991

Sarah Petersen, Ph.D., Class of 1995

Matthew Peterson, J.D., Class of 2000

Veronica Pillar, M.S., Class of 2006

Meaghan L. Pimsler, Ph.D., Class of 2002

John Pulice, Class of 2011

Shreya Punya, Class of 2015

Devin Rajan, Class of 2013

Priyanka Raju, Class of 2014

Abishek Ramakrishnan, Class of 2016

Pranita Ramakrishnan, Class of 2012

Sunny Rampuria, Class of 2016

Kavya Ravikanti, Class of 2016

Justin Redman, Class of 2016

Anna Reinert, M.D., Class of 2004

Nadia Rentia, Class of 2013

John L. Richardson, Class of 2001

Kristen Olvera Riemenschneider, J.D., Class of 1998

Roy Rinberg, Class of 2014

Dan Rodney, Class of 1996

Erica Rodgers, Class of 2003

Christopher Rom, Class of 2012

Abigail Darling Rose, Class of 2014

Brigette Rose, J.D., Class of 2000

Alec Rose, J.D., Certified Criminal Law Specialist, CBLS, Senior Experience 1986

J. David Rosen, Class of 1989

Anastasia Rumiantsev, Class of 2007

Edith Rutz, Class of 1995

Anirudh Ryali, Class of 2015

William Ryu, Class of 2016

Julie Sandlin, Pharm.D., Class of 1990

Paloma Santiago-Adorno, MBA, Class of 1992

Gopal Sarngadharan, M.A., MBA, Class of 1996

Kristen Donaldson Scheskie, Class of 1991

Ginesa Schleuse, MPT, CSCS, Class of 1995

Damion Schubert, Class of 1991

Sylvie Schuresko, Class of 2001

Brian Schuster, Class of 1996

Priya Seetharaman, Class of 2014

Lisa Thomas Seghers, Ph.D., Class of 1992

Jisung Seo, Class of 2014

Laura Sexton, Class of 2002

Kayuri Shah, Class of 2013

Rushi Shah, Class of 2016

Deborah M. Sharfman, Esq., Class of 1992

Melissa (Stefan) Sheehan, M.Ed., Class of 1992

Michael Sherman, Class of 1989

Oliver Shi, Class of 2015

Ashley Hall Shoemaker, M.D., Class of 1998

Anurag Shyamala, Class of 2010

Josh Silverman, M.Ed., Class of 1994

Rachel Simmons, Class of 2005

Sean Skally, Class of 1993

Eric Skroch, Class of 1989

Alison E. Slade, Class of 1999

Howard Small, Class of 2013

Lisa Koyuki Smith, Class of 1996

Mycroft Smith, M.D., Class of 2002

Ross Smith, Ph.D., Class of 1999

Stephanie Snoich, Class of 2010

Gina Song, M.Ed., Class of 1996

Sarah Soroos, M.S., Class of 1994

Richard Spall, Class of 1989

Jana Lepon Spencer, Class of 2004

Jeremy Spilker, Class of 1992

Jennifer Stamey, M.A., Class of 1996

Skye Elizabeth Stamey, Class of 1992

Anna Stapleton, Class of 2010

Brian C. Stearns, Class of 1993

Carolee Saunders Stearns, Class of 1993

Ann Stegner, Ph.D., Class of 1998

Barry Steinglass, Class of 1995

Brian Suskiewicz, M.Ed., Class of 1994

Eva Szymanski, Class of 2009

Nita Takanti, Class of 2014

Leon Tan, Class of 1992

Animesh Tandon, M.D., M.S., Class of 1999

Kimberly Taylor, Ph.D., Class of 1991

May Matson Taylor, Ph.D., Class of 1999

Fiona (Patricio) Thistlethwaite, M.S., Class of ‘97

Cynthia Thomes, MSLS, Class of 1992

Scott Thompson, Class of 2002

Michaela Thornton, Class of 2013

Sean Timm, Class of 1991

Jorge A. Torrico, Class of 1998

Thuc Tran, Class of 2013

Will Troppe, Class of 2010

Nicholas Turner, M.A., Class of 1996

Tish E. Twomey-Smith, Ph.D., Class of 1992

Meghana Valluri, Class of 2014

Kimberly A. Walters, Ph.D., Class of 1992

Michelle Klancnik Walters, J.D., M.Eng., Class of 1994

Angela Wang, Class of 2016

Zoe Wang, Class of 2015

Rebecca Weber, Class of 2002

Caroline Webster, MT, Class of 1996

Virginia Wells, Class of 1989

Liat Wexler, Class of 1996

Emily Wheelock-Davis, M.S., Class of 1998

Nate Whitaker, MBA, CFA, Class of 2002

Eila Wichern, Class of 2000

Bryan Williams, M.Eng., Class of 2012

Lauren Ashley Wilson, MSOD, Class of 2002

Suzanne Winters Sapp, Class of 1992

Christie Shuk Wisotzki, Class of 1990

Jennifer Wolstenholme, Ph.D., Class of 1992

William Woodruff, Class of 2014

Sara Wright, MSN, Class of 1999

Sarah A. Wyatt, MESc, Class of 2002

Dave Wyman, Class of 2012

Cassandra Xia, M.S., Class of 2008

Jeffrey Xia, Class of 2016

Ashley Xue, Class of 2014

Rohan Yaradi, Class of 2016

Minmin Yen, Ph.D., Class of 2007

Jennifer Yttri, Class of 2001

Jennie Yun, Class of 2014

Ramón Zabala, Class of 1999

Nafis Zebarjadi, Class of 1995

Alice Zhang, Class of 2014

Edward Zhou, Cadet, Class of 2016

Carson Zimmerman, M.S., Class of 1998

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this letter are those of the author and signatories, and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any agency of the U.S. government, or of any employer of any signatory.

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