Brent Suter (Photo credit: Justin Berl)

Milwaukee Brewers relief pitcher Brent Suter is antsy these days, looking forward to the start of Spring Training II and then a shortened regular season that, if the recent proposal from Major League Baseball is adopted, would open in July.

In “Everyone politcises climate change — it’s tough, as an athlete, to talk about it,” an in-depth interview Thursday with Matthew Campelli of The Sustainability Report, the environmentalist and EcoAthletes advisory board member shares his antsy-ness to see accelerated action on climate change as well as the challenges facing athletes who want to engage on the issue.

Brent Suter (Photo credit: Brewers/MLB)

Suter acknowledged to Campelli that politics does act as a brake for some athletes to engage on climate change — ““It’s tough to come out and talk. Everyone politicises climate change over here.”

That does not come close to stopping the Brewers’ southpaw.

He told The Sustainability Report about his three-pronged approach to encourage his fellow ballplayers to lift their feet off of the brakes (of the metaphorical electric vehicle, of course) and shift to the accelerator.

  1. Climate change is really a human health issue and the future of the planet – “the latter of which works better when engaging athletes with children.”
  2. Extreme weather, caused at least in part by climate change, is negatively impacting on-field performance.
  3. Being among the first baseball players to plow through the climate “wall” will be a significant legacy enhancer. “The first often get bloody and bruised, but it’s nothing compared to the positive change you can make,” Suter told Campelli.

EcoAthletes will play an important role in the #climatecomeback, providing athletes with valuable coaching in climate science and especially climate communications. Suter, who has already lent his support to H.R. 763, a carbon pricing bill that is working its way through the U.S. House of Representatives, believes that EcoAthletes will help athletes feel for more comfortable about the politics of climate.

“I’ve put my name on some bills and I see a lot of potential for other athletes doing the same – particularly in the locations their teams play,” Suter enthused to Campelli. “Using that name and platform to help those policies go through in Washington would be a big deal.”

You can follow Brent Suter on Twitter @Bruter24