The Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative two-day virtual meeting concluded today, seeing record attendance from regional Mayors, and impactful presentations from a number of governmental and environmental leaders.

“The 2021 Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative annual meeting was a tremendous success on many levels,” said Mayor Walter Sendzik, Chair of the Cities Initiative.  “Focusing on climate change, our Mayors are now more informed and energized to advance the protection and restoration of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River in their communities.”

Award-winning environmental activist, Erin Brockovich kicked off the conference as keynote speaker, followed by addresses from Administrator Michael Regan, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and Polly Trottenberg, Deputy Secretary of U.S. Department of Transportation.

Additional speakers included Senator Tammy Baldwin, Senator Debbie Stabenow, Ana Escrogima (U.S. Consul General of Montreal), Martin Loken (Minister (Political) at the Embassy of Canada to the U.S. in Washington, DC), the Right Honourable Brian Mulroney, Elizabeth Hendriks (Vice President of Restoration and Regeneration at WWF-Canada), Honorable Brenda Mallory (Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality), Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, Honourable David Piccini, M.P.P. (Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks), Senator Dick Durbin, Congressman Bill Huizenga and Congresswoman Debbie Dingell.

Breakout sessions were offered on Understanding Climate Change – Physical Changes in the Region Over the Next Century; Understanding Climate Change – Regional Impacts and Threats Over the Next Century; Planning for the Future – Adapting to the Physical Impacts of Climate Change; Planning for the Future – Preparing for Socio-Economic Impacts of Climate Change.

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