Advancing Climate Solutions. Now.

The Swain Climate Policy Series
Advancing Climate Solutions. Now. The Swain Climate Policy Series

The Humphrey School of Public Affairs has launched a new Climate Policy Series honoring retired government, business, community, and University of Minnesota leader Thomas H. Swain in his 100th year. 

Rather than looking backward at this point in his life, Tom is looking ahead. Alarmed by the warming of our planet, he is concerned about the fate of his grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and their contemporaries as they face life-threatening environmental challenges. Swain is keen to enlist his fellow citizens in efforts to reduce the climate threat. 

Answering his call to action, the Humphrey School has developed Advancing Climate Solutions. Now. The Swain Climate Policy Series, in partnership with the Institute on the Environment (IonE), to engage and energize students throughout the University of Minnesota, as well as residents across the state, to become part of the solution to climate change through policy and advocacy.

Our Inaugural Speaker: Al Gore

Portrait of Al Gore

Former vice president and longtime climate activist Al Gore kicked off this new series in a virtual public event on October 26. 

Gore discussed the challenges facing the world in addressing the widespread impact of climate change, in conversation with IonE Executive Director Jessica Hellmann.

During his career in Congress and as vice president, Gore was an early advocate of climate action and pushed for policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Since leaving office in 2001, Gore has founded two organizations, written several books, spoken widely, and been the subject of two documentary films, all raising awareness of the climate crisis and proposing solutions.

Watch video of the event

About the Swain Climate Policy Series

The Swain Climate Policy Series is geared to mobilize civic engagement on an ongoing basis, year round. The series, and the fund that supports it, were officially launched at Tom’s 100th birthday party on July 7.

Elements include:

  • High-profile public lectures featuring world-renowned climate experts and champions
  • Interaction among climate experts, students, researchers, community partners, and the public
  • Policy-focused student internships and research initiatives
  • Development and analysis of policy strategies for reduced reliance on fossil fuels and deployment of carbon-neutral energy resources
  • A focus on climate justice, aimed at reducing the disparate impacts of climate change on people based on geography, income and race
  • Opportunities for participants to learn how to be more effective climate stewards through both individual and collective action

What Others Are Saying About Climate Change


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