Cousteau to speak at local green event


The granddaughter of one of the world’s most famous undersea explorers is among the key speakers at the GreenTown Toledo-Lucas County conference later this month, officials announced Friday.

Alexandra Cousteau, a National Geographic “Emerging Explorer,” filmmaker, and advocate on water issues, will discuss the importance of saving water globally and locally at the two-day conference set for Oct. 25 and 26 at the SeaGate Convention Centre in downtown Toledo. Her grandfather, Jacques-Yves Cousteau, was a filmmaker and self-taught oceanographer who studied the sea and underwater life.

“She sounds terrific. We want to learn from the best,” said Lucas County Commissioner Tina Skeldon Wozniak.

Mark Fenton, an advocate for creating walkable communities and getting people on their feet, will lead a walking tour of downtown Toledo and talk about how to create a walkable community. He is the host of America’s Walking on PBS and a contributing editor to Health Magazine.

Also speaking at the conference is Ken Meter, a food system analyst who will discuss his study of the northwest Ohio food system; Michael Thaman, chief executive officer of Owens-Corning; Toledo Mayor Mike Bell; and Ms. Skeldon Wozniak.

Ms. Skeldon Wozniak said she’s thrilled with the lineup, as well as the public and private sponsors who are bringing the event together. They include the the city, the county, the Toledo-Lucas County Sustainability Commission, the University of Toledo, the Lathrop Co., Owens-Corning, Mercy Health Partners, and The Blade, among others.

She said the event should appeal to a broad range of people.

“Certainly policy makers, the business community that wants to green their buildings, university folks that want to plan for a more sustainable community, those that want healthy living, those that want more of a push toward local foods, planners,” she said. “It’s really widespread.”

The conference is intended to bring the entire sustainability community together to eventually create an action plan for making Toledo and Lucas County a “green town.”

To register, go to