New Jersey First Lady Tammy Murphy was a guest speaker for “Confronting the Climate Crisis: Ramapo’s Reckoning with Reality,” a day-long conference at Ramapo College of New Jersey on Wednesday, November 20.
“I am so impressed with you, this generation of young people, who are wise beyond your years on so many important issues,” said Murphy to a standing-room audience in the College’s Trustees Pavilion. “We are stewards of this planet, and the reality of climate change will transform our lives in ways we can’t yet see. But if we truly come together, we can turn this crisis around.”
Murphy noted that the climate change crisis will eventually cost New Jersey an estimated $10 billion, and stated the need for students to consider studies that are involved in reviewing environmental impact when creating communities and planning for the use of land and resources. Presently, New Jersey is the third most susceptible to a potentially dangerous sea level rise, she added.
“Education is our best tool to combat this crisis, and you are a generation with your eyes wide open to the dangers this can pose,” she said. “I applaud your efforts.”
Among her duties as First Lady, Ms. Murphy serves as secretary and charter member of The Climate Reality Action Fund, an organization founded by former Vice President Al Gore. Her policy initiatives focus on climate change education, infant and maternal health, and fostering women-owned businesses throughout New Jersey.
Topics of discussion for the conference were “Young People Take Charge: Empowering the Youth Climate Movement” and “The Climate Crisis and the Actualization of a Positive Future.”
Other guest speakers for the conference included:
Faduoa Brour, founder and president of the Moroccan Youth Climate Movement; Rachel Lee, Closter, N.J. high school student and president of NYC Zero Hour; Ananya Singh, Flanders, N.J. high school student and CEO of Greening Forward; Harriet Shugarman, executive director of ClimateMama; and Professors Michael Edelstein and Ashwani Vasishth, who co-chair the Sustainability and Environmental Studies Program at Ramapo College.
The event was sponsored by the President’s Committee on Campus Sustainability, the Environmental Studies and Sustainability majors, the Institute for Environmental Studies and Ramapo Green.