I was born and raised in Maine, and my family vacations were spent on the Belgrade Lakes. Some of my fondest memories happened on Long Pond, swimming in the clear waters by day and listening for the call of loons by night.

I recently began teaching at a midcoast elementary school. I often think about the “Maine” that I cherished as a kid and how climate change will affect our environment for my students and future children. I hope to raise a family here, and continue to share summer traditions on a Maine lake. But our lakes, including the Belgrades, are battling harmful algae blooms and invasive plants.

Warmer and more erratic weather — caused by climate change — makes it easier for invasive plants and other organisms to live here and spread. I recently spoke to someone from northern Vermont who could no longer let their dogs swim in Lake Champlain following toxic and potentially lethal algae blooms. With action taken now, we would not have to face this same fate.

We all, including our state and local elected officials, must do all we can to prevent and address climate-related impacts to Maine’s lakes. This important work will directly affect Maine’s future generations by ensuring that they have access to healthy lakes, too.

Anna Pezzullo

Bowdoinham


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