One Question, One Point, One Action

Thursday, March 17, 2022

One Question, One Point, One Action - March 2022

By Sally Yamasaki

-- a monthly article where a Lake Forest Park resident asks LFP Councilmember Tracy Furutani one question, and councilmember Tracy will answer the question and then highlight one point from a recent council meeting and one action we as a community can take.

If you have a question you would like to ask Tracy, email your question here:

Armand's cedar tree showing a LOT of brown…
result of heat and drought 2021
Photo by Armand Micheline
This month avid LFP gardener Armand Micheline has a question for Tracy.


Hi Tracy,

Having worked with you on your campaign for City Council I became aware of your great interest in climate change and how it affects Lake Forest Park.

As a gardener of 40 plus years I have seen a great deal of change in our weather patterns and its effect on our landscapes. Last summer, the heat dome causing temperatures climbing to 108+ degrees, was brutal on me as well as on my garden!

Though I've heard your climate talks and heard you on the campaign trail, I'd like to know more about what is happening now in LFP regarding climate issues. Is this heat dome really a “once in a millennium” occurrence? 

What other climate shifts might we see here in LFP?

Home weather station. On June 28, 2021- the left number is the outdoor temperature and the right number is the indoor temperature. Photo by Tracy Furutani


I hear you, Armand! I lost a few rhodies in my backyard last summer myself - I'd watered and watered them, but that didn't keep the leaves themselves from burning. I've never seen that.

And that's a harbinger for future summers; I'm afraid that the "once in a millennium" heat dome isn't going to be all that rare. According to Crosscut, University of Washington "researchers have learned that short bursts of high temperatures can pose a greater threat to plants and animals than long-term warming, and may even increase the risk of extinction." Couple that with more extreme storms in the winter, and you see the scope of the problem.

One Point:

I am grateful that we in LFP had such interest in forming the Climate Action Committee, and that nine members of our community volunteered to come up with a plan to guide how city operations (like the city's vehicle fleet) can cut down on greenhouse gas emissions (GHG - you will see this abbreviation a lot in the next decade).

Because "climate despair" - the feeling that individuals tackling the changing climate is hopeless - is a real feeling, the Committee will also include what LFP residents can do not only to cut their own GHG emissions, but also to adapt to our hotter summers and our more extreme storms, which may include what plants you might consider for your landscaping in these times.

One Action:

The one action you can take is to participate in the outreach activities this Committee will put together. Sure, we have nine (or ten, once we have the student member in place) great minds working on the plan, but there's a lot of things to think about and bring to the Committee's attention. 

Our neighbors the city of Seattle and the city of Shoreline both have Climate Action Plans that have been around for the better part of a decade. The Wednesday night Climate Conversations that Shoreline is holding are especially relevant. Sure, they're not us, but that doesn't mean that some of their ideas wouldn't work here. 

So, I encourage LFP residents to take a look at these plans and join in on the Climate Conversations to see what makes sense for our community. And keep an eye out for LFP’s newly formed Climate Committee's outreach efforts, starting sometime in spring!

NOTE: In this interview, Tracy is speaking on behalf of himself, not on behalf of the LFP City Council or the city of LFP.

Next Virtual Regular-Business LFP City Council meeting: Thursday, March 24, 2022 at 7pm


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