The Wesleyan Connection: Campus Snapshot

CLIMATE CHANGES: Jon Dickinson, the New York City Office of Environmental Coordination deputy director, delivers the keynote address for Focus the Nation, a nation-wide day of education, discussion and activism to address climate change, in Memorial Chapel Jan. 31. Wesleyan was one of 1,550 universities, schools, businesses, and places of worship that took part in Focus the Nation. Dickinson focused on proposed climate change, air and water quality, transportation and clean energy initiatives in the New York City area.

To a full chapel audience, Dickinson said New York City’s goal is “to have the cleanest air quality of every city in America.” New York City currently has four times more air pollution than the average U.S. city, he explained. By 2030, the city plans to plant 1 million trees and eliminate 3,000 tons of soot in the air each year. The city has plans to implement cleaner, more reliable power, upgrade the transportation system and have 99 percent of all city residents living within a 10 minute walk to an open land or recreation area. (Photos by Olivia Bartlett)

In addition to the keynote address, Wesleyan faculty included topics of climate change in their course material for the day; Long Lane Farm and Bon Appetit served a sustainable dinner at the Usdan University Center; Jeffrey Wolfe of GroSolar presented An Inconvenient Truth Slideshow; the Environmental Organizer’s Network (EON) co-sponsored a film, Circus for a Fragile Planet; EON led three panels on policy response, corporate and intuitional response and climate and social justice. On Jan. 30, Wesleyan took part in “The 2% Solution,” a live and interactive webcast featuring Stephan Schneider, sustainability expert Hunter Lovins, green jobs pioneer Van Jones, and renowned actor Edward Norton.