Students Host First Ever Climate Summit in Windsor Essex


The generation who will be most impacted by climate change is taking the lead is trying to solve it.

Students representing almost all the high schools in the Greater Essex County Public School Board gathered for a climate change summit.

They heard from several speakers and municipal leaders during the event at the Essex Civic Centre.

One of the Organizers was Fumi Malott, a Grade 12 student at Leamington District High School.


Student climate summit organizer Fumi Malott, Essex Civic Centre, December 10, 2019 (by AM800's Peter Langille)

She says climate change is an issue that needs to be addressed.

"It's definitely critical and people are becoming more concerned about the future because we can already start to see the impacts happening today" says Malott.  "So it's really great that there are a lot of leaders, student leaders who are stepping up right now."

Malott says this is the first time a summit like this has been held.

"We're starting this event to start these relationships between the municipal councils and student leaders, which we hope will continue and develop into further plans and that the relationship continues" explains Malott. 

One of the speakers was Leamington Economic Development, Tourism and Special Events Manager James Cox.


James Cox, Leamington Economic Development, Tourism and Special Events Manager, December 10, 2019 (by AM800's Peter Langille)

He wanted to get the students to think about climate change through the lens of economic development.

"Because there are incredible opportunities to address this really pressing need" says Cox. "Through the creation of new industries, through adapting new industries.  A lot of these are high school students that are thinking about future careers.  There are careers to be made in addressing these issues."

Malott hopes this is the first of many such climate summits involving students.

The summit also heard from the public board's energy and environment officer Kathleen Quenneville, ERCA's climate change specialist Claire Sanders and Amandeep Hans from the health unit.

Law student from the University of Windsor who participated in the cities and climate action forum also spoke.

A synopsis of the days events will be compiled and shared with the participants.