Potsdam High School Staff and Students Attend Adirondack Youth Climate Summit

Tupper Lake, NY – More than 150 people, from 24 high schools and colleges across the Adirondacks gather at The Wild Center in Tupper Lake, NY on November 9th and 10th, for the first Adirondack Youth Climate Summit. 

Each school sent a team including students, educators, administrators and facilities staff to develop their own actionable carbon reduction plan designed to decrease their energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.  “This team approach acknowledges how realistic change and solutions can only come from partnerships and teamwork,” said Jen Kretser, head of programs at The Wild Center and an organizer of the Summit.  “We know that progress can’t be made by the students alone or ideas coming top down from administrators.  Success will depend on changing how we approach energy use and a new way of thinking from everyone. That is why we structured the conference to work with a team approach of students, administrators and facilities staff.”

The first day focused on the most current data on climate change impacts on the planet, the United States, the Northeast and the Adirondacks.  The Summit brings together a panel of experts in the growing climate economy business answering questions about what jobs are out there, what kind of training is available, and what jobs are likely to be coming to the Adirondacks.  Capturing the benefits of the climate economy for the region could help young people make decisions about returning to the region.  According to the Adirondack Association of Towns and Villages’ Adirondack Park Regional Assessment Project the Adirondacks are one of the most rapidly aging regions in the nation, reflecting an exodus of younger residents.

In break-out sessions, teams were given the tools and information to create their own energy and carbon reduction plan.  Members of each team attended sessions on Energy Efficiency, Recycling and Waste Management, School & Local Food production, Transportation and Energy Education in Public Schools.  Teams then apply what they learned to create their own carbon reduction plan. 

Potsdam High School participants included Mr. Bob Brothers, Building and Grounds Supervisor, Mr. James Allot and Mr. Dave Sipher, Science Teachers, Mr. Nick Leuthauser, Technology Teacher, Paul Buchanan and Danielle Foisy, students.