Several UT faculty members will be accompanying City of Knoxville and White House officials on a Climate Resiliency Tour around Knoxville today.
Matt Murray, director of the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy; Mary English, a fellow at the Baker Center; and Brad Collett, assistant professor of plant sciences and landscape architecture, will participate in the event looking at how Knoxville’s South Waterfront redevelopment plan and urban wilderness conservation efforts are making the community more resilient to the impact of climate change.
White House staffers David Agnew, director of the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs, and Michael Boots, acting chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, will join Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero, Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke, Maryville Mayor Tom Taylor, and Farragut Mayor Ralph McGill.
Other local participants will represent the Knoxville Utilities Board, the Knoxville Chamber, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tennessee Valley Authority, the state Department of Environment and Conservation, the state Department of Transportation, Tennessee Emergency Management, Transportation Planning Organization, Genera Energy Inc., Gulf Coastal Plains and Ozarks Landscape Conservation Cooperative/Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, the Sierra Club, Tennessee Clean Water Network, and National Parks Conservation Association.
The tour will include a drive along the South Waterfront with stops at Ijams Nature Center and Fort Dickerson. Discussion topics will include climate-responsible floodplain development, brownfield remediation, storm water management, open space preservation to protect water quality, and urban wilderness conservation efforts.
The tour will conclude at the Baker Center where Rogero and the White House staff members will talk with the media at 11:30 a.m.