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Sustainability Graduate Students Develop Framework for NC Power Dialog

March 24, 2016

solar-panelsWhat does the road from Paris look like for North Carolina? On April 7, Wake Forest University MA in Sustainability graduate students will moderate the NC Power Dialog, an opportunity for students across the state to meet with regulatory, legislative, and generation experts from the energy sector to discuss perspectives on North Carolina’s opportunities to curb greenhouse gas emissions.

“Dialog participants will leave with an understanding of what the Clean Power Plan is, and what it means for North Carolina,” says Coley Schiro, an MA in Sustainability graduate student. Hearing perspectives from a variety of different groups in the energy sector will empower participants to develop a voice in critical decisions that will determine their futures. “Students are especially important—the combination of this generation’s tech-savvy skillset and passion for the environment puts them in a great position to take on jobs in renewable energy.”

Schiro and students in the MA Sustainability’s Applied Sustainability class have been instrumental in developing an issue guide that will be provided to all participants prior to the dialog. Kelsey Gaude is also among the group of graduate students leading these efforts.

“North Carolina is on track of reducing carbon dioxide emissions,” says Gaude, who has learned of many new tools and developments emerging in NC’s renewable energy sector. “The dialog is a critical piece in the education of our students, who will witness significant environmental changes in their lifetime. It’s important to stay informed; viewing the issue through multiple perspectives is key to developing long-term solutions that actually work.”

The NC Power Dialog is one of many of statewide dialogs inspired by the Bard Center for Environmental Policy’s national dialog campaign. The aim of the national Power Dialog is to support 10,000 students in engaging in face-to-face dialog with state officials and energy experts in more than thirty states nationwide to discuss state-level action to help meet the U.S. climate commitment of 30% cuts in global warming pollution by 2030.

Students and faculty from North Carolina’s colleges and universities are invited to attend the NC Power Dialog, which will be held on Thursday, April 7, 2016, from 5:00 – 8:30pm in Farrell Hall at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC. Following an opening panel, participants will break into smaller dialog groups to discuss perspectives. Participants will reconvene at the conclusion of the event to discuss common themes and opportunities with the panelists. Faculty members, students, classes, and student groups can register here; dinner will be provided to those who register.