Climate Week NYC kicks off with a goal of creating actionable solutions to problems

NEW YORK — Taking action due to our changing climate is a hot topic across the Tri-State Area. Earlier this month, New Jersey became the first state to include climate change in school curricula.

This week, leaders from around the globe are meeting in the Big Apple for Climate Week NYC.

CBS2’s Vanessa Murdock has more efforts to drive climate action.

As , just five years after Hurricane Maria devastated the island, climate-conscious minds are gathering at the Times Center at the same time as the United Nations General Assembly.

“It starts off as a way of saying to heads of state that are coming through, look, climate is a really important issue,” Climate Group CEO Helen Clarkson said. “With climate action, we’re really running out of time.

Clarkson says climate conversation is taking place and people are learning from each other.

“People are coming together and really working on solutions,” she said.

Cathy Patillo traveled from Washington DC

“Fascinating discussions on how to move forward and the importance of all of us having partnerships on climate,” Patillo said. “We need action. We need caring.”

On the schedule are more than 400 events around the city, including some at the South Street Seaport Museum, which was devastated by Superstorm Sandy’s surge. Capt. Jonathan Boulware, president and CEO of the museum, said the museum must be part of the climate conversation.

“Not only is it important, it’s an imperative, really, for us to be advocating for a resilient New York,” Boulware said.

The museum will host a panel discussion, and already at port at Pier 17, the Danmark, a foreign sail training ship, will open to the public later this week.

At the start of the school year, New Jersey became the first state to include climate change in its student learning standards.

“We’ve been working toward Sept. 6 for many years now,” first lady Tammy Murphy said. “I’m thrilled that New Jersey is first. Let there be no doubt we are giving our students an edge.”

Murphy, a mother of four, said, like so many parents, she wants to leave the world a better place for her children.

“At least the same as we’ve found it and we’ve enjoyed for our lives,” she said.

Murphy said she believes embedding climate change in the core curriculum will add up to jobs in the green economy of the future.

“If we don’t train our children to be the next generation of leaders and innovators in this space, then they will be left out and that can’t happen,” she said.

Hoboken mom of two Bethlehem Gregory said climate change in the curriculum sounds wonderful.

“I think everyone will benefit from that,” Gregory said.

Murdock asked two teenagers to offer their take.

“I mean, it doesn’t really change anything,” 16-year-old Angel Acosta said.

“It’s important because we’re the ones causing all this. I think we should learn about it and try to stop it,” 14-year-old Shane Berberena added.

From classrooms to conference rooms, climate change action is a priority for many.

The first lady said she hopes other states will join New Jersey, adding five states have already reached out to learn more about the climate change curriculum.


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