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RELEASE: Museum of Life and Science to host third annual Youth Climate Summit

For Immediate Release – February 16, 2024 | 1 pm

Media Contact:
Ro Rode, Director of Marketing and Communications
(919) 220-5429 x361


DURHAM, NC — More than 100 North Carolina teenagers will gather at the Musuem of Life and Science for the third annual North Carolina Youth Climate Summit (YCS) February 18 – 19. The event will feature special addresses from Durham Mayor Leonardo Williams and Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources D. Reid Wilson.

“The effects of climate change are reshaping the world,” Associate Program Manager of Nature and Sustainability Madeline James said. “Numerous national and international reports continue to emphasize the critically urgent need for action on climate change. Our changing climate can be depressing or overwhelming, but action is the antidote to despair. I am honored to get to work with an amazing group of young adults stepping up to meet this major challenge.”

Participating teens will join in teams that include high school environmental clubs, youth leadership clubs, scout groups, and other action and service-oriented clubs. The summit will feature opportunities for pre-registered students to learn, network, and make their own plans for climate action.

This youth-led event is planned and hosted by a dedicated Teen Advisory Board who meet at the Musuem throughout the school year to shape every aspect of the summit. This year’s summit is a two-day event. Sunday, February 18 is a kickoff event that combines hands-on service opportunities so that the teens can hit the ground running with climate action, an opportunity to explore the Museum’s 86-acre campus including our newest exhibit on Climate and Sustainability.

Monday, February 19 is a conference-style event that includes workshops that will provide the teens with tools and resources for different paths to climate action, speakers who will educate and inspire, Eco-Fair exhibitors who will connect with teens on opportunities to get involved with existing climate action projects, and the day culminates with the teens working together with their team to create a climate action plan that they can implement at their school or within their community. Past climate plans have included getting their school to switch from Styrofoam to compostable lunch trays, a school electrification campaign, school-wide recycling campaigns, clothing swaps, and educational events.

The Museum of Life and Science recognizes the importance of this initiative by the youth in Durham. The commitment and leadership of young people are valuable assets toward climate resilience. Communities, schools, local organizations, and governments are natural partners in implementing these solutions in our backyards and work together towards a sustainable future.

More info, including the Summit schedule, is available at


About the Museum of Life and Science

Located less than five miles from downtown Durham, the Museum of Life and Science is one of North Carolina’s top family destinations. Our 84-acre campus includes a two-story science center, one of the largest butterfly conservatories on the East Coast, and beautifully landscaped outdoor exhibits. Our interactive experiences include Dinosaur Trail, Ellerbe Creek Railway, Hideaway Woods, Into the Mist, Earth Moves, and Aerospace, which features one of the largest collections of Apollo-era NASA artifacts in the state. The Museum is also an AZA-accredited zoo, home to rescued black bears, lemurs, endangered red wolves, and more than 60 species of live animals. For more than 75 years, the Museum has upheld its ongoing commitment to the communities of Durham, the Triangle, and North Carolina. To learn more, visit