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May 10, 1999 - Image 3

Resource type:
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Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 1999-05-10

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Monday, May 10, 1999 - The Michigan Daily - 3
Fore addresses development at conference

Gore praises citizens, Mayor
rcher's efforts t revitalize
evelopment in Detroit.
y Michael Grass and
dam Zuwerink
Jaly News Editors
)ETROIT- Calling for improvements in the
uality of life in communities nationwide, more
han 3,000 delegates from around the world con-
ened in Detroit last Tuesday for the first
National Town Meeting for a Sustainable
America."
The five day conference. held at the Cobo
enter, was sponsored by the President's
ouncil for a Sustainable America and the
ilobal Environment and Technology
-oundation, and was highlighted by Tuesday's
ech from Vice President Al Gore, who
3ke on the need for a increase in the quality
if life in America's communities.
GMore was introduced by Jenny Reed, a
ophomore at Hixon High School in
'hattanooga, Tenn.
Reed was part of a 21-member youth panel,
omposed of high school students frotn around
The National Town Meeting
or a Sustainable America
The five-day conference brought
government officials and community
organizersttogether at Detroit'shCobo
Center last week. The goal of the
conference was to bring individuals,
businesses and communities together to
commit to a future of sustainable growth.
* Vice President Al Gore speaks last
uesday at the conference about national
initiatives to create better communities in
the United States.
Gore announced 53 commitments from
11 federal agencies, including a
Department of Agriculture plan to promote
local farmers' markets.

the nation, who held workshops during the
conference focusing on how young people can
contribute to sustainable development during
the 21ist century.
Briefly talking about why sustainable
growth is important to today's youth, Reed
stressed the important things students can do
for America's communities and environment.
"There are ways for my generation to make
a sustainable America, simply because we
care," Reed said, adding that today's youth can
make a difference through a "simple action
called volunteering."
Joined on stage by the youth panel, Detroit
Mayor Dennis Archer and former Mich. Gov.
James Blanchard, Gore began by apologizing
to the 3,000 delegates present in Cubo Center's
Wayne Hall and the 60,000 people who were
watching via satellite from over 100 locations
throughout the country for his late arrival.
in opening his remarks about sustainable
development, Gore praised Mayor Archer and
the city of Detroit for the revitalization efforts.
"Look at what has happened here - unem-
ployment is down, the bond rating has gone
from junk bond to A- status..." Gore said, pro-
claiming that "Motown has become Showtown
once again."
Gore's comments on Detroit echoed
Archer's opening remarks. "We are a city in
the process of rebuilding ... in Detroit, sus-
tainable redevelopment is well underway."
Gore said the purpose of sustainable devel-
opment is to bring local governments together
with businesses and community groups in
cooperation to make communities more liv-
Gore said the drive to create sustainable
communities goes beyond the meeting, and is
a national movement.
"The tnessa'ie is clear, we can create an
America that is not only good, but is better
than ever before," Gore said. "We realize this
really is a great national challenge for the 21lst
century"
Gore stressed however that it is not the fed-
eral government's role to "make local planning
decisions."
Rather, these choices should be left to the
local communities by empowering those at the
grassroots level, Gore said.
Using the Wayne County Metropolitan

Vice President Al Gore speaks in front of 3,000 delegates attending the National Towr
Sustainable America at the Cobo Center In Detroit last Tuesday.

Airport as an example, Gore praised planners
who expanded the airport while preserving
10,000 acres of area wetlands.
Gore said "we have to understand that many
of the challenges we face don't recognize
defined borders - and neither can our solu-
tions."'4
Gore ended his speech with a few proposed
initiatives, including new regulations requir-
ing "all passenger cars and trucks to meet the
same tough pollution standards," and $1 bil-

lion dollar Lands Legacy Initiative to protect
areas like Florida's Everglades, California's
redwood forests and other sensitive areas
nationwide.
Gore said America needs to build a sense of
possibility in every community in order to cre-
ate livable communities for everyone.
Americans are at the "dawn of a whole new
kind of prosperity ... not defined by the quan-
tity of their bank account, but by the quality of
their lives."

Prof. speaks to Nobel committee

By Adam Zuwerink
Dit, News Edmitr
No professor has ever won a
Nobel Prize while working at the
University, but the committee vho
awards the Nobel Prize in physiolo-
gy and medicine recently took an
interest in a University professor.
,lhe Karolinska Institute in
Sweden invited Public Health Prof.
George Kaplan to deliver a speech at
the Institute in Sweden last month as
part of the Karolinska Research
Lectures.
While Kaplan, who also serves as
Epidemiology Department chair,
downplais the possibility of win-
ning a Nobel Prize, his invitation is
c idered by many as a milestone
f he field for public health.
His invitation by the Karolinska
Institute was its first to a profession-
ia in public health.

Kaplan said he hopes his speech,
entitled "Upstream and Downstream
Approaches to Inequalities in
IHealth,"svill serve as a springboard
for the future recognition of public
health, where the influence of dis-
ease factors are explored on the
community level, rather than at an
individual level.
"I hope they begin to acknowl-
edge the field of public health,"
Kaplan said.
"Many investigators are now turn-
ing their attention to trying to under-
stand the pathways that link the
socioeconomic position of individu-
als and communities with individual
and community health," Kaplan said
in a report entitled "Some Nesv
Observations on Social Class and
Health," which was co-written by
Department of Epidemiology
Assistant Research Scientist John

Lynch.
Throughout his studies, Kaplan
said he has found that other factors
contribute to the health of the
greater community.
There is a "lot of evidence that
says the only way to reduce disease
is to look at upstream factors, such
as socioeconomic status, income,
and wealth," Kaplan said.
Kaplan said the link between
health and economic status has
shown that those vho are economi-
cally disadvantaged have vorse
health.
Only with increased study of these
factors can progress over disease
finally be achieved, Kaplan said.
In his report, Kaplan address the
"critical need to further develop the
tools and empirical knowledge vith
which to document and understand
these links."

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