Erin Zimmerman

Climate Reality Leader at Climate Reality Project


Environmental Columnist

Erin Zimmerman PhD is a Climate Reality Leader with the Climate Reality Project – Silicon Valley Chapter.

The Climate Reality Project was founded by former Vice-President Al Gore in 2009 with the goal of “catalyzing a global solution to the climate crisis by making urgent action a necessity across every sector of society.” Erin was trained as a climate reality leader in 2019 but has been an environmental activist since she completed her Masters degree in 2010 which focused on environmentally-induced migration and its impacts on national stability. Erin went on to earn a PhD from the University of Adelaide, Australia, in political science in 2013.

She has been active in the environmental movement for more than a decade and has worked with local organizations in Australia, Switzerland and the United States to address issues across the spectrum including addressing food waste, implementing sustainable agriculture, encouraging voter engagement and many other aspects of the environmental agenda. After relocating to the Bay Area in 2019 she joined the Climate Reality Project – Silicon Valley Chapter where she has served as the co-director of its education and outreach-focused Speakers Bureau as well as been actively involved in supporting San Jose Clean Energy and the legislative and policy team.

Zimmerman: Drought and heat stress California’s infrastructure

The heat this past weekend was a reminder that California’s weather is changing—and we are in a hot-zone. Parts of California, including San Jose, are actually warming faster than the global average and some parts have already reached the 2 degrees Celsius cutoff cited by scientists as the point of no return. California’s infrastructure isn’t...

Zimmerman: How to talk about climate change

The single biggest contribution you can make to combat climate change is to talk about it. The Yale Program on Climate Change Communication poll shows 72% of people think the climate is changing, and that the consequence will likely be negative on plants, animals and future generations. Despite this, an even larger number of people—up to...

Zimmerman: The importance of environmental literacy

For decades, educators and legislators have failed students regarding environmental education. California’s Environmental Literacy Task Force noted in 2015 that, “K-12 students in California do not currently have consistent access to adequately funded, high-quality learning experiences, in and out of the classroom, that build environmental literacy.” The lack of education on climate change, and the...

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