United States Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell delivered the keynote address at the 2015 Leahy Environmental Summit

Note to Reader:

Vermont Summit_logoIn March 2015, US Senator Patrick Leahy sponsored the 2nd biennial Leahy Environmental Summit in Burlington, Vermont. Senator Leahy is the longest serving member (40 years) and dean of the United States Senate. His vision for this ‘convening for action’ event is that it would inspire social and structural resiliency for flooding and stormwater issues related to climate change.  U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell  gave the keynote address

Water and Climate

TSally Jewell_US Secretary of Interior_500phe keynote speaker for the 2015 Leahy Center Environmental Summit was Secretary of the Interior, Sally Jewell. She heads an agency that serves as steward for about 20 percent of the United States’ lands, including national parks, national wildlife refuges, and other public lands; oversees development of conventional and renewable energy supplies on public lands and waters; is the largest supplier and manager of water in the 17 Western states; and upholds trust responsibilities to the 566 federally recognized American Indian tribes and Alaska Natives.

Secretary Jewell said people in some parts of the country are still burying their heads in the sand and not preparing for the life altering changes affecting the planet. “You’re getting storms that you’ve never seen before; you’re getting winds that you’ve never seen before,” Jewell said. “We’ve got to be adapting. We’ve got to be addressing it. We can share with the public the benefit of green infrastructure.”

Senator Patrick Leahy_120pIn introducing Jewell, Senator Leahy said that even though the meeting was taking place a few feet from the still­ frozen Lake Champlain, a fully frozen lake is much less common than it used to be. In late March four years ago, Vermont was basking in 80 degree temperatures, the same year Lake Champlain reached its all­-time record high, causing flooding along the lake into late spring. Later that summer, Vermont was hit by flooding from Tropical Storm Irene.

To Learn More:

To read media coverage of the event, click on the links below:

Secretary Jewell to Address Leahy Environmental Summit on Water and Climate

US Interior Secretary thanks Vermonters for climate prep

Planning for future flooding events in Vermont

Environmental Summit Focuses on Preparation

Enviromental summit draws in government leaders

Vermont Summit_screen shot of tv video