2017 Carnot Prize Policy Lecture and Award Ceremony
- Hon. Gina McCarthyFormer AdministratorEPA
- Hon. Lynn Scarlettco-Chief External Affairs OfficerThe Nature Conservancy
- Dr. Mark Alan HughesFaculty DirectorKleinman Center for Energy Policy
This year's Carnot Prize, for distinguished contributions to energy policy, was awarded to the Honorable Gina McCarthy, former Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
The award was presented by the Honorable Lynn Scarlett, Co-Chief External Affairs Officer at The Nature Conservancy, and former Acting Secretary, Deputy Secretary, and Chief Operating Officer of the U.S. Department of the Interior. The award ceremony included remarks in McCarthy’s honor from several distinguished guests and concluded with a reflection on energy policy by Ms. McCarthy.
Thanks to Knowledge@Wharton and SiriusXM for making this recording available.
About the Speakers:
Gina McCarthy is a career public servant in both Democratic and Republican administrations, and has been a leading advocate for common sense strategies to protect public health and the environment for more than thirty years. As the head of EPA under President Obama, she led historic progress to achieve the administration's public health and environmental protection goals and Climate Action Plan. In 2015, McCarthy signed the Clean Power Plan, which set the first-ever national standards for reducing carbon emissions from existing power plants, underscoring the country's commitment to domestic climate action and spurring international efforts that helped secure the Paris Climate Agreement. During her tenure, EPA initiatives cut air pollution, protected water resources, reduced greenhouse gases and strengthened chemical safety to better protect more Americans, especially the most vulnerable, from negative health impacts. Internationally, McCarthy worked with the UN and WHO on a variety of efforts and represented the U.S. on global initiatives to reduce high risk sources of pollution. Known for her pragmatic approaches and disarming, plain-speaking style, McCarthy has earned the respect of the environmental, public health and business communities with her thorough understanding of all sides of climate, air quality, chemical safety, environmental justice and health equity, and water, land and natural resource protection and restoration discussions.
Before joining EPA, she served five Massachusetts Democratic and Republican administrations and was Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection. She joined EPA in 2009 as Assistant Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation. In 2013, she was chosen by President Obama to spearhead his climate efforts at the federal level as EPA Administrator.
Former Deputy Secretary and Chief Operating Officer of the U.S. Department of the Interior, Lynn Scarlett is co-Chief External Affairs Officer at The Nature Conservancy and Global Climate Strategy Lead. In these roles, Scarlett directs all policy in the United States and the 70 countries in which TNC operates. Scarlett also served at Interior as the Acting Secretary of the Interior in 2006. While Interior’s Deputy Secretary, Scarlett initiated and chaired the Department’s Cooperative Conservation Working Group and its first-ever Climate Change Task Force. She chaired the nation’s Wildland Fire Leadership Council. She served on the Executive Committee of the President’s Management Council and co-chaired the First Lady’s Preserve America Initiative. She is author or co-author of publications on climate change adaptation; ecosystem services; large landscape conservation; and science and decision making. She chairs the Science Advisory Board of NOAA, recently co-chaired the Landscape Conservation Cooperatives Council established in 2014 by the U.S. Department of the Interior and the National Academy of Sciences Sustainability Roundtable.
She received her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in political science from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she also completed her Ph.D. coursework and exams in political science and political economy.