Webinar: What the House Select Committee’s Climate Crisis Report Means for Local Governments

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Date(s) - 09/02/2020
11:00 am PDT - 12:30 pm PDT


Local governments are on the front lines of the climate crisis, implementing sustainability programs and land use decisions that directly affect the climate preparedness of their communities. Based on extensive consultation with stakeholders and experts, including local leaders and elected officials, the U.S. House of Representatives Select Committee on the Climate Crisis majority staff issued a report in June 2020, “Solving the Climate Crisis: The Congressional Action Plan for a Clean Energy Economy and a Healthy, Resilient, and Just America.” Acknowledging the important role of local planning, the Select Committee report includes an array of recommendations for how Congress should empower the federal government to be a strong partner to local communities for climate preparedness, adaptation, and resilience. Join ICLEI elected leadership and House Committee experts for a presentation of the Select Committee’s report, key recommendations that affect local climate planning, and next steps for implementation.



Samantha Medlock is senior counsel for the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, supporting the Committee’s work to advance climate science, adaptation, and resilience. Sam joined the Committee from a private sector role in climate risk management, insurance, and finance. Previously, Sam was senior advisor in the Obama White House, coordinating across the Executive Office of the President and the administration to reduce the risks and costs of climate change and disasters. She has more than 25 years of experience in environmental, land use, and disaster law serving states, regional partnerships, and local governments. Sam is a Juris Doctor graduate with honors of Vermont Law School and earned a Bachelor of Science summa cum laude from Texas Woman’s University. She served on the Advisory Committee for the Natural Hazards Center at the University of Colorado-Boulder, taught coursework in resilience finance at the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership, and was an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Santa Barbara & Ventura Colleges of Law.


Raleigh L. Martin, Ph.D., is professional staff with the majority staff of the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis in the U.S. House of Representatives. Raleigh previously served the Select Committee as an American Geosciences Institute (AGI) Congressional Science Fellow, and prior to this he spent two years as an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science & Technology Policy Fellow in the Geosciences Directorate at the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF). Raleigh earned his Ph.D. in geology at the University of Pennsylvania followed by postdoctoral training at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), in atmospheric and oceanic sciences.



Commissioner Brigid Shea, Precinct 2, of Travis County, TX, to Austin in 1988 to start the Texas chapter of Clean Water Action after a career as a journalist for NPR stations in Minnesota and Philadelphia. She then served on the Austin city council from 1993 to 1996 and championed consumer, electoral, and environmental reforms. As the co-founder of SOS, Austin’s historic law to save Barton Springs, the Commissioner has been an advisor to LCRA, Seton, the City of Austin, and others, and my work with a client won the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality’s Environmental Excellence Award. In additon to my role as Board Chair for ICLEI USA, Commissioner Shea serves on the national board of Clean Water Action and proudly represents Travis County as Commissioner since 2014.


California State Senator Nancy Skinner is ICLEI co-founder and a social justice advocate, energy and climate change trailblazer, and accomplished legislator. She has also completed three terms in the state Assembly. Skinner began her public service in 1984 as the first and only student to be elected to the Berkeley City Council. On the council, Skinner introduced the nation’s first Styrofoam ban and co-founded an international association of cities, the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives, now known as ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability, to address climate change. After her term on the council, Skinner served as executive director of ICLEI’s US office and international director of ICLEI’s Cities for Climate Protection program, which engaged cities worldwide to act to stop climate change. In the Assembly, she served as chair of three key committees: Budget, Rules, and Natural Resources and carried measures that doubled rooftop solar and renewable energy. In the state Senate, Skinner serves on eight committees and is chair of the Public Safety Committee and the Public Safety Budget Committee. She has authored two landmark criminal justice reform laws, opening up police misconduct records for the first time in 40 years and overhauling California’s outdated and unfair felony murder rule. She also has authored laws to address California’s housing crisis and protect the environment and cut greenhouse gas emissions. A graduate of UC Berkeley with a BS and an MA, Skinner co-founded the labor union representing graduate student instructors and was a leader in the UC South Africa Divestment movement.

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