“Let your vision be guided by hope, your path be adventurous, and the power of your thoughts be directed toward the betterment of tomorrow.” — Will Steger
Our founder, Will Steger wrote these words in a letter to students from his International Trans-Antarctica expedition in 1990. Will’s words ring true today, nearly 40 years later; they guide our work and are our call to action. April brings Earth Day—a time to celebrate and care for our planet! Individuals and their communities across Minnesota and beyond are engaging in real, tangible climate change solutions.
In Red Wing, we presented to the city council and school board, along with educators, students, and community members to build their climate literacy and inspire deeper climate action. We’re excited to see Red Wing commit to stronger clean energy goals and climate change education. They join educators and students working to advance climate change education resolutions in their communities. Our staff has spent the past seven months mentoring rural high school youth to plan community convenings that will be held this April and May in Warba, Carlton, Rochester, Moorhead, and New London-Spicer. Our Twin Cities high school network, YEA! MN, is gearing up for our annual Youth Climate Justice Summit and conversation with Governor Dayton on April 25th.
This month we encourage you to check out our recently revamped website at www.climategen.org: explore our new structure, core programs, and action resources. Follow our founder Will Steger who is above the Arctic Circle skiing across Canada’s Barren Lands with classrooms following along. Then, take action during Earth Week with our events and tools, including:
- Youth Convening Minnesota – New London-Spicer – April 21
- Student Earth Week Action Toolkit
- Youth Climate Justice Summit – April 25
Finally, we look forward to seeing you at our annual donor appreciation breakfast at the Red Stag Supperclub on May 2nd. RSVP today to hear updates from our team and a message from Will on his solo expedition!
Nicole Rom, Executive Director
Keynote Speaker Announced for Summer Institute!
We’re very excited to have Dr. Troy Knight, Associate Professor of Environmental Studies at St. John’s University, as the keynote speaker for this year’s Summer Institute, June 26-28 at St. John’s University. Dr. Knight’s current research includes reconstructing past climates and forest population dynamics using dendrochronology and the study of tree rings, as well as using phenology to track the impacts of climate change. There are still applications open to attend for free! Apply today.
Where in the World is Will Steger?
Will is on day 30 of his Barren Lands Solo Expedition into the Arctic landscape. In that time, he has experienced bone-chilling temperatures, heartwarming kindness from new friends, and a tent fire that was quickly extinguished. You can follow along with Will in our bi-weekly emails featuring his daily dispatches, journal questions, and resources for educators to use with students.
Find a Climate Change Convening Near You
Over the next several weeks, youth in communities across Minnesota are doing the crucial work of bringing together peers, families, neighbors, and decision makers to talk about climate change and place-based solutions. Youth leaders in Carlton, Moorhead, New London-Spicer, Rochester, and Warba have been planning and priming these important conversations in their communities for the last seven months, with support through virtual coaching and mentorship from Climate Generation staff. Find out more about Youth Convening Minnesota and convening locations and dates.
What Do Youth Want? A Fossil-Free Minnesota
On April 25, youth from across Minnesota will gather at the state Capitol to tell lawmakers what climate solutions they believe we need. Youth aged 12–21 from Minnesota are invited to join us! The Youth Climate Justice Summit includes meetings with Governor Dayton and state lawmakers, plus workshops, an art space, and a free lunch. Funding is available to pay for transportation, too. Register today!
Do You Have What it Takes?
We challenge you to the City Nature Challenge, a four-day worldwide race to log natural species all around us! This challenge is all about getting people outside to look for nature in their own city. On April 27-30, Challenge participants will take pictures of wild plants and animals using the iNaturalist app. On May 1-3, scientists will identify what was found. Ready, set, observe your world!
New School Board Resolutions Toolkit
We believe all school districts should teach climate change so that students grow up understanding the issue as science, not as controversy, and that they see their role in solutions to human-caused climate change. We’re leading a campaign to make climate change education a priority in our schools; youth and community members can use our new Climate Commitments: School Board Resolution Toolkit to introduce local resolutions to school boards to teach climate change.
Conservation, climate change and clean energy were issues in the spotlight this week at several events across Red Wing. Our Executive Director, Nicole Rom kicked off the presentation by saying, “We’re hoping to provide some grounding context for a lot of the leadership you’ve already taken on, and we want to start by really applauding and acknowledging what a leader Red Wing has been around climate and clean energy.”
On Wednesday, March 21st, 2018, 17 students and their coaches came together to learn about prairies and why they are beneficial to the environment. Our Climate Change Education Manager, Jenna Totz, presented on how prairies and climate change connect.
This Climate Cast episode covers the science of rising seas and climate stories from Minnesota residents. Earlier springs make maple sugar production tougher. Joseph Rousu shares his climate story, thanks to Climate Generation’s Talk Climate Institute.
Earlier this week, our Brewing a Better Climate fundraiser at Surly Brewing challenged attendees to a night of climate change trivia!