Local Climate Leadership: Fern Nueno

Posted by on Monday, January 29th, 2018

Fern Nueno is a Planner at the City of Long Beach and will be a guest speaker at our next Leadership Circle Quarterly Meeting on February 7th.

Tell us about your work on climate.

Long Beach is developing its first Climate Action and Adaptation Plan (CAAP), which builds upon the previous work done by the City and other organizations in the area.  Community engagement is an important part of creating and implementing this plan, so we reached out to residents, business owners, and the local scientific community early in the process and will continue the discussion throughout development of the plan.  Through the CAAP, Long Beach will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and become a more resilient city by preparing for the impacts of climate change.

What inspired you on your career path? And what or who inspires you now?

I have had many interests that shaped my career path, and have been inspired along the way by amazing new scientific discoveries and technologies.  I enjoy planning because of the variety of projects that planners work on to improve our communities.  I continue to be inspired when I hear presentations by people who are passionate about protecting the environment and improving quality of life locally and globally.  I especially enjoy discussions with multidisciplinary groups of planners, public health professionals, economists, and scientists.

What are the barriers you face in work — and what could make your job easier?

One barrier is a lack of resources, from information to staff time to funding.  Another barrier is trying to balance conflicting priorities, both in Long Beach and at the regional, national, and global level.  Continued collaboration with other agencies, research institutions, and organizations could make my job easier.

A genie grants you two wishes that will help fight climate change. What do you ask for? The third wish is for anything you want (sky’s the limit!).

  1. I want a deep understanding of physics and psychology downloaded into my brain.
  2. An empathy button that I could press to help people consider previously unknown possibilities. 
  3. Super powers!  Maybe teleportation abilities?
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