Culture Connect Featured Event

NOV. 17: HUMAN NATURE FUELING GLOBAL WARMING - Panel Discussion of Peaceful and Environmental Solutions


Panel Discussion of Peaceful and Environmental Solutions

On Saturday, November 17, Peoples Action for Clean Energy (PACE) will present a program addressing one of the greatest problems of our time: how to combat global warming and still meet our human needs. The event, to be held at the Friends Meeting House, 144 S. Quaker Lane, West Hartford, will begin at 6:30 p.m.  and will include a panel discussion with experts to help the audience find realistic solutions. Clean energy literature, homemade desserts, cider and coffee will be available. This unique event is free and open to the public. For more information, go to or call 860 693 4813. Panelists are listed below.


Dr. Robert Thorson is a University of Connnecticut professor of geology, ecology and evolutionary biology, and anthropology; a Hartford Courant op-ed columnist who wrote the column,” Human Nature Fueling Global Warming,” that inspired this event; and a book author. Dr. Thorson, an experienced speaker, will be awarded PACE’s Lifetime Achievement Award on November 17.

Dr. Mary Lee Morrison is an educator and writer on the faculty of the National Peace Academy. She founded and directed Pax Educare, the Connecticut Center for Peace Education, to foster public understanding of peace education and its transformative potential in all forms of educational settings. A former social worker, she is a member of the City of Hartford Advisory Commission on Food Policy.

Roger Smith, CT Clean Water Fund/Clean Water Action director, coordinates the Connecticut Climate Coalition. Roger helped coordinate the grassroots citizen lobbying effort which passed one of the first state global warming laws in the country. He works in communities and at the state capitol to support energy efficiency programs for electricity and home heating as well as renewable energy.

Dr. Melissa Everett is co-founder and Hartford outreach coordinator of Community Energy, Inc., as well as co-founder and executive director of Sustainable Hudson Valley. She is the author of three books, including the award-winning Making a Living While Making a Difference. A skilled facilitator, Dr. Everett is experienced with community engagement processes and strategic planning.

Justin Haaheim is the founder, lead organizer and Connecticut regional coordinator of, a grassroots environmental coalition. He also serves as the community clean energy coordinator at Clean Water Action in Hartford. Justin earned a Master of Arts in Religion and Ethics from Yale Divinity School and holds a degree from The Institute of Sacred Music in New Haven.

Attorney Refai Arefin is the vice president of the Muslim Coalition of Connecticut and serves as the Assistant Imam of the Islamic Association of Greater Hartford. His study of Islam has taken him throughout most of the Muslim world. His wife Maliha is a marriage and family therapist who helps him advocate for more peaceful families.

Eric Paradine is not a panelist but a musician who will open and close the event on November 17. A Connecticut singer, guitarist and songwriter, Eric has been nominated for best solo performer by the Hartford Advocate and has performed in the New England area for the last 10 years.