Polar explorer Will Steger and Fresh Energy director J. Hamilton Drake to speak at CSB

September 17, 2013

Will Steger
J. Hamilton Drake

Noted polar explorer Will Steger and J. Hamilton Drake, science policy director at Fresh Energy, will speak at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 1 at Room 204, Gorecki Center, College of Saint Benedict.

The pair will speak on "Clean Energy, Climate and Health." The event is free and open to the public.

Steger will present firsthand accounts of global warming effects he's seen on his expeditions. Hamilton will speak on effective clean energy and clean air solutions that benefit our health, and will describe the connections among clean energy, climate change and human health.

Steger is best known for his legendary polar expeditions to the North Pole (1986), the 1,600-mile south-north traverse of Greenland (the longest unsupported dogsled expedition) in 1988, the first dogsled traverse of Antarctica (covering 3,471 miles) in 1989-90 and the first dogsled traverse of the Arctic Ocean in one season from Russia to Ellesmere Island in Canada (1995).

He is the author of four books: "Over the Top of the World," "Crossing Antarctica," "North to the Pole" and "Saving the Earth."

In 1995, Steger received the National Geographic Society's prestigious John Oliver La Gorce medal for accomplishments in geographic exploration in the sciences, and public service to advance international understanding. He has also received the Explorers Club's Finn Ronne Memorial Award (1997), the Lindbergh Award (2006), the Lowell Thomas Award from the Explorers Club (2007) and the National Geographic Adventure Lifetime Achievement Award (2007). He was appointed by Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty in 2006 to serve on the Minnesota Climate Change Advisory Group, a group charged with recommending a climate action plan to substantially reduce Minnesota's greenhouse gas emissions.

He formed the Will Steger Foundation in 2006, which is committed to foster leadership and international cooperation through environmental education and policy. The foundation is also educating, inspiring and empowering the public in a campaign to address global warming.

Hamilton joined Fresh Energy in 1995, and her responsibilities include scientific analysis, policy development and advocacy of clean energy solutions to global warming that will maximize economic opportunities for the Midwest. She earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in physical geography from Dartmouth College and the University of Minnesota.

She was awarded an international leaders fellowship from the European Union, and used that award to study climate policy solutions. Hamilton is a former assistant professor at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

Fresh Energy, which is based in St. Paul, Minn., has transformed widely held economic and environmental ideas into energy policy.

The speech is sponsored by the CSB Office of Sustainability.