Posted: March 21, 2024

Watch the recording from our conversation with Local Climate Action Program (LCAP) co-directors Brandi Robinson and Peter Buck. LCAP is built on the idea that cooperation can help Pennsylvania’s communities reduce emissions and become more thriving, resilient, equitable places to call home.

Session Description

The Local Climate Action Program (LCAP) is built on a simple idea: cooperation can help Pennsylvania’s communities reduce emissions and become more thriving, resilient, equitable places to call home. The LCAP brings together Penn State students, faculty, local governments, community members, and experts from related fields by pairing students with PA local government partners to inventory greenhouse gas emissions and to help communities begin climate action planning. This program provides students with valuable real-world experience in carbon accounting and climate policy planning while also offering communities and local governments additional capacity building experience to work in this space. Drawing on stories from real students and real communities, LCAP co-directors Peter Buck and Brandi Robinson will share insights into what it feels like to navigate the challenges and opportunities of building and managing an engaged learning experience for students while balancing the unique needs of communities big and small across the Commonwealth. This session will be interactive, and participants are invited to raise questions and share insights from their own experiences. 


Below are several resources and links that were shared in the meeting chat (in order of appearance in the conversation/chat): 

Storyteller Bios

Brandi Robinson is an Associate Teaching Professor in the Department of Energy and Mineral Engineering where she teaches primarily in the Energy and Sustainability Policy program.  She also co-directs the Local Climate Action Program which pairs students with municipal governments across the Commonwealth to do greenhouse gas emissions inventories and begin climate action planning initiatives.  In addition to these roles, Brandi chairs the technical advisory group tasked with implementing the Centre Region’s climate action and adaptation plan. 

Dr. Peter Buck is the Associate Director of Climate and Sustainability Education at Penn State Sustainability and Co-Director of the Local Climate Action Program. Buck has a decade of experience in municipal, regional, and school district government as an elected and appointed official. Over his tenure, he has instigated and shepherded pro-democratic and climate-forward policy, capital projects, and planning. His successes have placed him Generation 180’s School Leaders in Clean Energy and opportunities to testify before the Pennsylvania General Assembly’s 2021 Local Government Commission and the 2022 Legislative Reapportionment Commission. 

About the Series

The focus of the “Stories from the Field” series is on the “why” and “how” of community engagement and applied research. For each session, we invite the speaker(s) to tell us about their work and share stories that illustrate why they approach their work the way they do and how it looks and feels on the ground. After speakers share stories to springboard conversation, we open a facilitated discussion with attendees about the challenges and opportunities of doing work with and for communities, businesses, non-profits, and the public sector. Stories from the Field is hosted by Penn State's Center for Economic and Community Development, an applied research center dedicated to strengthening local and regional development in Pennsylvania and beyond.