10th National Conference on Science, Policy, and the Environment
America and the world are facing a “perfect storm” of economic crisis and looming environmental catastrophe. In many ways, these crises have the same cause – living beyond our means with little thought for the future. The long term solutions may also be the same – transitioning to a healthy, sustainable, fair, low carbon economy.
There is currently a lot of attention to the idea of a “green economy.” The Obama administration has already made steps in that direction. However, many questions remain:
What does it mean for an economy to be green?
What does economic growth mean in a green economy?
Can the US economy be green if other economies are not?
What is a green workforce?
What can people be employed to do in a green economy?
Where will the future jobs be?
Can there be green economies on a planet of 9 billion people?
Can there be 9 billion people on Earth without green economies?
How does one measure the “greenness of an economy?”
How do we transform the US into a green economy?
How can we help to transform the global economy into a green economy?
Can a green economy be created piecemeal by activity within sectors, or by facility types e.g. hospitals and churches?
What are the roles of science and technology in preparing for and transitioning to a green economy?
How can entrepreneurship speed the transition from discovery to the marketplace?
What are the roles of education and training?
What is the role of “green infrastructure” and ecosystem goods and services to a green economy?__________________________
How does green investment and green jobs help with short-term economic recovery and long term economic transition?
How do economic and educational institutions help to prepare people for green jobs?
What should individuals do to prepare themselves? New employees? Current workers?
What kinds of retraining are needed?
The outcome of the conference will be a set of recommendations on how to move towards a green economy in the US and in the world. These recommendations will be developed by multidisciplinary, multi-sectoral participants in concurrent breakout sessions on the key issues of environment and economy. The recommendations will be presented to the Obama Administration and to Congress, as well as to other key stakeholders.
An additional outcome of the conference will be more than 1000 scientists, students, educators, policymakers, managers, and other citizens who will have an increased understanding of the relationship between economy and environment and will be motivated to help develop solutions.
NCSE uses a multi-disciplinary and multi-sectoral approach that engages involved scientists and decisionmakers from a wide range of organizations. Our style is very collaborative – we invite individuals and organizations to be full partners in developing the agenda and holding the conference. Our conferences are very interactive, including stellar speakers, topical symposia to explore issues in more depth, breakout sessions to develop recommendations on how to advance science and connect it with policy and decisionmaking.
Full agenda available online: http://ncseonline.org/conference/greeneconomy/cms.cfm?id=2836
The NCSE national conference is a place to explore these issues in both a short-term and long-term context. NCSE will engage leading thinkers and doers from a diversity of disciplines, sectors, and perspectives in a structured conversation about the meaning of the green economy and how investment in green education, research and jobs can help solve both the economic and environmental crises.
Our focus will be on solutions – development of a “greenprint” on how to achieve a sustainable economy. We will look at the role of science (including social and natural sciences as well as engineering) and its application to society in the development of a green society. We will look for opportunities for long-term win-win solutions that can both help the economy to recover in the short term and to be sustained in the long term.