Jackson Leonard: Letter to the Environmental Rules Board

Editors note: In an effort to convince the Environmental Rules Board they have the authority to take on getting a Climate Action Plan for Indiana, numerous people wrote civil, impassioned letters. Leonard was one of the original petitioners, and here is his letter.


Dear Environmental Rules Board,

Hello, my name is Jackson Leonard and I’m from Stilesville, Indiana. You’ll recall me from the June 11 hearing. I’ve returned from training in California and I’m back only for a short time. I regret not having the opportunity to meet you all again.

I'm a Marine because I believe in the relationship that exists between my country and myself. We listen to each other and take care of each other appropriately. I give maximum effort at all times because my country asks me to.

However, when I ask my country to act on climate change, I’m ignored.

I am exceedingly disappointed and disturbed that my leaders are choosing not to explore an issue that will affect current and future generations. How can I operate efficiently in the fleet knowing that my friends, family, and farm are suffering due to climate change?

It’s my responsibility to defend my country and that should be my only concern. Unfortunately, I’m afraid that I will return to a weaker Indiana. I want to trust that my leaders will not let that happen.

Climate change has become a serious threat to national security. We will see global instability, hunger, poverty and conflict. Military facilities and my home in Indiana will be devastated by fierce weather. Fortunately, the DOD is becoming greener in an effort to protect the country from the new enemy that is Climate Change.

The Navy and Marine Corps are deeply committed to energy conservation, preserving the environment, and planning for and alleviating the effects of climate change. The Marine Corps is employing renewable energy, developing energy saving gear, and are currently launching numerous other projects. I’m proud to be a part of that and I expect to participate in similar efforts when I return.

Let’s progress with the rest of the country. We need the Environmental Rules Board to help us take those first steps. If the Climate Action Plan Petition is granted a public hearing, all of the passion, support, and hard work we put into the petition will be embodied in a powerful and convincing display. Let our voices be heard.


Jackson Leonard,

Private USMC

Andy Fry