Future of the Ocean Symposium: A Sobering Response to Upcoming Administration

Wishing Whale had the pleasure of attending the 12th Annual Future of the Ocean Symposium & Champion of the Ocean Awards Luncheon earlier today. The event, held at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, New Jersey, included a variety of guest speakers, who discussed America’s Ocean Future, and what the priorities for congress and the Trump Administration are moving forward. This discussion was insightful being only about a month away from the Presidential Inauguration.

The mission of this event was to serve the University and the public interest as a forum for research, education, and collaboration that fosters the application of the best available science and policy to support stewardship of healthy, resilient and productive coastal ecosystems and sustainable communities. While we were unable to attend the entire function, some key points were discussed which stressed the importance of climate change and and what Americans can do.

 Christine Todd Whitman, 50th Governor of New Jersey and President The Whitman Strategy Group, a firm that specializes in energy and environmental issues, was one of the guests and honorees of the event. She served as Administrator of the EPA under the Bush Administration. Another honoree and guest was Donald E. Boesch, President of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science.

Primarily the speakers discussed how the new administration will affect the implication of sustainable practices and its growth. While still very early to tell, the possibly of retrogressing in regards to the progress the United States has made for combating climate change is a harsh reality many champions of marine conservation and environmentalists must face.

While it is easy to feel uneasy about the future, there is always hope.Only days ago President Elect Trump and daughter Ivanka met with Al Gore to discuss climate change. America’s younger generations have been exposed to the reality of climate change. While Trump has a history of climate change denialism, his children understand just how important this issue is. Whitman said at the event on Trump, “Listen to your daughter.”

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