White House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy, Governor Mills to speak at Maine Climate Council conference June 17

“Communities Leading on Climate” conference will highlight actions by Maine communities and individuals that support state climate plan, Maine Won’t Wait


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Augusta, MAINE
– White House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy will join Governor Janet Mills and community leaders from across Maine on Friday, June 17 as speakers for “Communities Leading on Climate,” a one-day conference highlighting actions by Maine cities, towns, and tribes to support the state’s climate plan, Maine Won’t Wait.

Organized by the Maine Climate Council, which developed Maine Won’t Wait, the “Communities Leading on Climate” conference will present case studies of successful community climate actions such as planning, engagement, resilience efforts, energy efficiency, economic development, and public transit and transportation investments. 

The Maine Climate Council was created in law through a bill proposed by Governor Mills and approved with bipartisan support of the Maine Legislature in 2019.

“With so many local clean energy and climate projects happening since the release of Maine Won’t Wait, the timing is right for this conference, ‘Communities Leading on Climate,” to highlight the towns, cities and tribes that are showing leadership on climate action,” said Hannah Pingree, co-chair of the Maine Climate Council and Director of the Governor’s Office of Policy Innovation and the Future. “We are excited to have Advisor McCarthy, Governor Mills and so many others join us to share ideas, insight and inspiration on local and regional climate action in Maine.” 

Since Maine Won’t Wait was released in late 2020, dozens of communities in Maine have taken significant local actions to address climate change, on everything from local plans, infrastructure investments, clean transportation, and energy efficiency.

In April, Governor Mills announced the first grants from the Community Resilience Partnership, a program of the Governor’s Office of Policy Innovation and the Future, which awarded $2.5 million to support local and regional climate and clean energy initiatives in 70 communities around the state. A further round of grants for communities will be awarded later this year.

McCarthy, the first ever White House National Climate Advisor, serves as the chair of President Biden’s National Climate Task Force. She will highlight the importance of federal partnerships with other levels of government to reduce emissions, promote equity, and create good-paying jobs. 

The “Communities Leading on Climate” conference aims to engage city, town and tribal officials, staff, and interested community members about successful strategies and available resources to start or expand local climate planning and action.

To highlight community leadership on climate action, the conference’s morning sessions will feature speakers from Rockland, Biddeford, Lewiston, Limestone, Portland, Belfast, York, Norway, the Penobscot Nation, Brooklin, Dover-Foxcroft, South Portland, Eastport, and more.

To help support further local climate action and activity, the conference’s afternoon will feature workshops hosted by local, state, and federal organizations and agencies to connect community leaders with climate planning tools, grant opportunities, and financial and technical assistance programs. 

The “Communities Leading on Climate” conference will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Friday, June 17 at the Augusta Civic Center. Attendance is available either in-person or virtually via Zoom. 

Full schedule details and registration information, including opportunities for shared transportation to the conference via GOMaine and scholarships for attendance, are available on the conference webpage.