Mayor to talk about Climate Resolution Plan

Katarina Rothhorn, Features Editor

On Dec. 20, 2021, the City of Marquette passed a Climate Action Resolution that marked their commitment to carbon neutrality by 2050 along with other more sustainable practices. Now, nearly a month after the resolution was adopted, Marquette Mayor Jenna Smith will be meeting with NMU students, faculty, staff and community members to talk about the resolution and what it means for Marquette.

“She is going to be discussing her vision for climate action in the city,” Ryan Stock, assistant professor at NMU and coordinator for NMU’s Northern Climate Network, said. “And what’s cool about this climate action resolution, is it’s going to be written into the new Marquette City Master Plan and it’s going to be one of the central pillars of the master plan moving forward.”

Mayor Smith’s talk is a part of the Climate at Noon series co-hosted by Northern Michigan University and the Marquette County Climate Adaptation Task Force. The Climate at Noon speaker series brings in a speaker every month to address some aspects of climate change.

“We often feature speakers who have done research or who have done work related to climate change, either in the community or globally,” Stock said.

Mayor Smith’s presentation for the series will be on Friday, Jan. 21 from noon to 1 p.m. over Zoom and in-person in Jamrich 1311. Due to COVID-19, all of the Climate at Noon events have had to be held online for the past two years, but Stock hopes to turn the events into a hybrid option to increase attendance.

“Turnout over Zoom was not always as reliable so I’m hoping to try and revitalize the Climate At Noon series by having a face-to-face option and also a Zoom option,” Stock said. “Which is a lot more work, but it seemed to work out last time we did it.”

Stock hopes students and other attendees will find the hybrid format more accessible, but he also wants them to feel inspired by the speakers they bring in. What is inspiring about the Climate Resolution Plan, in particular, is that it was drafted with the help of three NMU students.

“I hope students derive from this that if they do become civically engaged, they actually can make a difference,” Stock said. “Instead of just sitting in their dorm rooms feeling helpless and hopeless, if they actually get involved … you can make big structural change even though you’re not yourself in a position of power.”