Two months ago three teens represented Seattle Youth CAN at a national Climate Leadership Conference here in Seattle. Madeleine (far right) was one of our delegates at the final day of the conference (possibly the only teens in attendance). Here are some thoughts from her on the experience:
I am so glad that I had the rare chance to attend the Climate Leadership Conference on Thursday (3/10/16). My experience at the conference was incredible. It was powerful to listen to so many climate leaders from around the United States talk about the action being taken in their various cities.
After the opening speeches and the opening panel, I chose to attend the first of our three options for the second panel. The one that I listed to centered around four speakers. One from Austin, one from San Francisco, one from Denver, and one from Seattle. Each person hold an influential position in the government of their respective city that revolves around climate change and sustainability. Each one spoke about the actions being taken in their city to reduce carbon output as well as switch over to more sustainable energy sources. It was fascinating to hear the different approaches being taken and compare and contrast the different plans and goals each city has. It was shocking (but in a very good way) how ambitious some of the action plans were, for example: Seattle’s current goal for carbon emissions is to be completely carbon neutral by 2050. I loved how the entire conference revolved around what actions people are taking and the plans for the future rather than simply talking about the effects of climate change. I think it is a wonderful approach to take. I admit a few points people made went over my head bit it was fascinating and I feel incredibly lucky to have had the chance to see and even meet so many climate action leaders both in the Seattle area and the wider country.
Member of the SYCAN Youth Leadership Committee