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5 Great Moments from our Minneapolis - St. Paul Training

This August, we traveled to Minneapolis-St. Paul for our 42nd Climate Reality Leadership Corps training. Our goal? Highlight the climate impacts Midwestern communities are feeling through higher temperatures, extreme weather and changing seasons, and changes to their cherished natural environments. 


Throughout the weekend, 1,156 new trainees from 38 countries and a list of incredible speakers brought attention to important environmental movements in Minnesota and beyond.

The training also put the spotlight on key local fights, including work to stop the Line 3 Pipeline, a proposed crude oil pipeline that would cross through northern Minnesota and threaten Native American reservations and beautiful bodies of water, including the Mississippi River. 

In addition, speakers led taught trainees how to tell their climate story and gave new Climate Reality Leaders the tools to start their journey fighting for climate solutions.

Want to learn more about what happened and what Climate Reality Leadership Corps trainings are like? Take a look at some of the highlights from what happened during our weekend in Minneapolis! 

1. A Warm Welcome

Climate Reality Training from Minneapolis

Today at our #Minneapolis training, our founder and chairman, former Vice President Al Gore, is announcing something big.

Posted by Climate Reality on Friday, August 2, 2019

Our founder and chairman, former Vice President Al Gore welcomed everyone to Minneapolis before his famous slideshow presentation and had a big announcement, introducing 24 Hours of Reality: Truth in Action, a global climate conversation on November 20–21 hosted by Climate Reality Leaders around the world: 

"As many of you know, every year toward the end of November, beginning of December we have 24 Hours of Reality. We're going to do it a little bit differently this year and we're going to ask all of the Climate Leaders who have been trained, who are in a position to do so, to give a presentation on the climate crisis and its solutions in the same two-day period, November 20th and November 21st. This is going to be a different, and I think much more exciting 24 Hours of Reality."

It’s going to be one full day of the world coming together to talk about the climate crisis and find solutions.

Best of all, it’s easy to get involved. Climate Reality Leader presentations are free and anyone can request one. If you want to learn more and find out how to request a presentation, just fill out our sign-up form here

2. Climate Reality Leaders: Who We Are

Climate Reality Leaders: Who We Are

Hear from trained Climate Reality Leaders - LIVE in Minneapolis.

Posted by Climate Reality on Sunday, August 4, 2019

A group of passionate, experienced Climate Reality Leaders spoke on a panel with Vice President Gore, discussing how they joined the Climate Reality Leadership Corps, why they got involved in climate activism, and what being a Climate Reality Leader means to them. 

Not only did these incredible activists give our new trainees advice about how to personalize presentations, but they also even provided some comic relief and shared some funny stories from the climate frontlines. 

It’s one thing to know people are out there fighting the good fight, raising awareness of the crisis and bringing practical solutions to communities worldwide. It’s another to hear about it in person and hear how someone like you can make a real difference. And judging from the reception in the room, that’s exactly what everyone there was getting ready to do next.

3. Innovation in Climate Communication

There are many ways to make a difference in the climate fight and not all are about calling your senator. In several of the breakout sessions in Minneapolis, guest speakers with a history of thinking outside the proverbial box talked about their unique approaches to helping solve the climate crisis. 

In the "Social Media for Climate Action" session, influencers and Future Earth founders Stephanie Shepherd and Max Moinian talked about how social media can be used as a tool to educate others and raise awareness of the climate crisis. They also shared some pro tips for engaging and motivating a social audience. 

Naturally, the audience had a lot of questions. Over the course of the Q&A, Stephanie talked about how she grew her social media audience, how to find out what content her followers engage with (whether that's flashy photos or talking about keeping our beaches clean – or doing both at the same time!) and even different methods to interact with followers on climate change using memes and humor.

4. New Leaders Tell Their Stories

One of the real highlights of the Minneapolis–St. Paul training was hearing new Climate Reality Leaders share stories of their personal journeys as activists up on stage.

Their stories were incredibly touching and inspiring, even tear-jerking! By mastering the art of telling their climate stories, Climate Reality Leaders will be able to use those stories to connect with audiences on a deeply human level and make their own presentations more personal. 

5. Mayors Get Real

We were honored to have the mayor of Minneapolis, Jacob Frey, and the mayor of St. Paul, Melvin Carter, join Minnesota Public Radio Chief Meteorologist Paul Huttner for a discussion of how they're working to combat climate change in the Twin Cities. 

Their playful rivalry got a lot of laughs but gave even more insight on the local impacts of climate change in the Midwest. In between jokingly poking fun at one another, the mayors talked about how both cities are taking steps to improve infrastructure, public transportation, and legislation to make an impact on the climate crisis.

When asked about specific efforts being taken to reach those goals, Mayor Melvin Carter said, "Our goal is by 2025 for 90 percent of our residents to live within a 10-minute walk of four or more of low or no carbon transportation options."

Not to be outdone, Mayor Jacob Frey added, "We need to be looking at electrifying everything we do. Minneapolis has a goal of getting to 100 percent electric with our enterprise by 2022 and getting to 100 percent electrified as a whole city by 2030." 

We can't overstate enough how excited we were to hear about the amazing efforts being made in the Twin Cities and across the Midwest to fight the climate crisis. 

Want to Check Out More Moments from the Training?

If you weren't able to attend or simply want to re-live the memories from our Minneapolis–St. Paul training, check out our Instagram story from the event! You'll get to see pictures from inside the event, behind-the-scenes clips with our amazing staff, and get a taste of what our trainings are all about.

Become a Part of the Climate Reality Community Yourself! 

If you're thinking that you missed out on a chance to take part in an extraordinary training, we've got good news for you! There are many opportunities for you to get involved and even become a Climate Reality Leader. 

If you're interested in attending an upcoming training or want to learn more about the Climate Reality Leadership Corps, you can read more here

We also have some great opportunities coming up to learn about the climate crisis in YOUR community. On November 20–21, we’re presenting 24 Hours of Reality: Truth in Action, a global climate conversation hosted by trained Climate Reality Leaders in all 50 states and countries around the world.

For one full day, Climate Reality Leaders will be leading presentations talking about the crisis and how we solve it in schools, workplaces, community centers, and more. The good news is that presentations are free and anyone can request one.

Learn how you can be part of this historic event and request a presentation in your own school, workplace, or other venue here.