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News Release

University of Minnesota's GoNorth! travels with delegation of students from arctic countries to United Nations Climate Change conference in Copenhagen

Contacts: Todd Reubold, Institute on the Environment, (612)-624-6140 or
Ryan Maus, University News Service, (612) 624-1690,

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (12/04/2009) —University of Minnesota professor Aaron Doering and program director Mille Porsild, both part of the GoNorth! adventure learning series, will travel with a group of 20 teachers and students from the United States, Canada, Norway and Greenland to next week's 15th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP15) in Copenhagen, Denmark.

While at the conference, the youth will speak and perform at numerous events with the highlight coming on Dec. 10 when they will open a photo exhibition of their lives in the arctic at the Danish National Museum. The event was developed in partnership with Chris Germano of the Many Strong Voices program (part of the Global Risk Identification Program within the United Nations Environment Programme) and the unique exhibit will travel around the world following the Danish premiere.

"Climate change is the greatest challenge facing humankind today," Doering said. "No one speaks more powerfully and has more vested in this conversation than children and teens in the Arctic today. For them climate change isn't a matter of if and when it's impacting their lives right now."

"By attending the conference, we hope to spur and engage in a global conversation about climate change and what it means to each one of us," Porsild said. "Through our What is Climate Change to You? (WCCY) project and the exhibit at the Danish National Museum, were providing a very personal window into how climate change is affecting residents of the arctic."

Canadian Inuit leader and Nobel-prize nominee Sheila Watt-Cloutier will also be part of the delegation traveling to COP15.

Doering is the Bonnie Westby Huebner Endowed Chair in Education and Technology in the College of Education and Human Development.

Tags: Institute on Environment

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