BOONE, N.C.—Gina McCarthy, the former head of the EPA, and Majora Carter, an urban revitalization strategist who hosts “The Promised Land,” a Peabody Award-winning public radio series, will deliver keynote addresses during the Appalachian Energy Summit at Appalachian State University. McCarthy speaks Monday, July 10, and Carter the following evening, both in the Schaefer Center for Performing Arts on Appalachian’s campus.
The 2017 summit will take place July 10-12. McCarthy will speak at 7:30 p.m. July 10, and Carter will speak at 6:30 p.m. July 11. Both talks are the only portions of the summit that are free and open to the public.
This is the sixth year Appalachian has hosted the Appalachian Energy Summit. It brings together some of the world’s most brilliant minds in energy policies and practices, according to Dr. Lee F. Ball Jr., Appalachian’s director of sustainability and a principal organizer of the summit. Professors, Appalachian staff, industry leaders and students put forth a transformational effort aimed at delivering meaningful ecological, financial and social benefit, he said.
The theme of the 2017 summit, “Perspectives: Policy & Practice,” underscores the multiple viewpoints needed to develop successful strategies that promote clean energy production, distribution and consumption.
“We do not have a lot of time to address climate change and other challenges,” Ball said. “Because of that, we need everyone’s input. We have got to get everyone’s help. Gina and Majora are accomplished, visionary leaders with the kinds of viewpoints we need to consider more if we are to further our goals of avoided energy costs, carbon reduction, social responsilbity and environmental stewardship.”
About the speakers
McCarthy served as head of the EPA under President Barack Obama. She is now a senior fellow at the Institute of Politics at Harvard University and a Menschel Senior Leadership Fellow at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
In 2015, during her EPA tenure, McCarthy signed the Clean Power Plan. This set the first-ever national standards for reducing carbon emissions from existing power plants, underscoring the United States’ commitment to domestic climate action and spurring international efforts that helped secure the Paris Climate Agreement. She also oversaw initiatives that cut air pollution, protected water resources, reduced greenhouse gases and strengthened chemical safety, better protecting more Americans from negative health impacts.
Carter has a long list of awards and honorary degrees, including a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship. She serves on the boards of the U.S. Green Building Council and The Wilderness Society. Since 2008, her consulting firm has exported climate adaptation, urban revitalization and leadership development strategies for business, government, foundations, universities and economically underperforming communities.
Carter founded and led Sustainable South Bronx from 2001 to 2008, when few were talking about sustainability. By 2003, she had coined the phrase “Green the Ghetto,” as she pioneered one of the nation’s first urban green-collar job training and placement systems and spearheaded legislation that fueled demand for those jobs.
For more information visit https://sustain.appstate.edu/initiatives/energy-summit/2017
About Appalachian State University
Appalachian State University, in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The transformational Appalachian experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and embrace diversity and difference. As one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina system, Appalachian enrolls about 19,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.