Breathing Fire: How a Warming Planet Impacts Air Quality and Human Health

Today, Trust for Public Land (TPL), Montclair State University’s PSEG Institute for Sustainability Studies, and Center for Cooperative Media announce a joint panel forum centered around the critical juncture of climate change, human health, and the role that media plays in shaping public discourse, to be hosted on October 9 at Montclair State University.

Dr. Howard Frumkin, Senior Vice President & Director of Trust for Public Land’s Land and People Lab, will deliver a keynote address highlighting why the intricate relationships between climate change, media narratives and human health have never been more vital. Dr. Frumkin, along with a panel of experts, will use this gathering to dive deep into the intersection of our changing climate, the narratives we consume and the lives we lead.

The event will comprise of two panels:

  • Wildfires and Climate Change: Risk Factors and Impacts on Public Health: Moderated by Dr. Amy Tuininga, panelists will explore connections between climate change, wildfire frequency, air quality, and the collective impact on public health. Panelists will discuss how climate change impacts fire vulnerability in natural systems and related fire management strategies. Panelists include Michael Kronick, Connecticut Department of Energy & Environmental Protection; Melissa Miles, New Jersey Environmental Justice Alliance; Dr. Makoto Kelp, Stanford University; Dr. Gregory Pope, Montclair State University
  • Air Quality and The Media: Framing Public Disclosure: Moderated by Chris Daggett, panelists will explore the role of journalism in raising awareness about air quality and climate, and how news organizations can combat misinformation and guide public discourse. As the climate continues to shift, providing accurate and timely information to communities is critical for public health, and journalists are first-reporters/chroniclers in cases of climate emergencies such as the recent Canadian wildfires. Panelists include Nsikan Akpan, Ph.D., New York Public Radio: WNYC/Gothamist; Peter Prengaman, The Associated Press; John Upton, Partnership Journalism Editor at Climate Central

“Across the country and world, the devastating effects of the climate crisis are felt,” said Dr. Frumkin. “From worsening floods to destructive forest fires, communities, scientists and reporters are grappling with their roles. This forum will be instrumental in bridging dialogues and inciting meaningful action.”

The event, scheduled for Monday, October 9th, 2023, will be held at the 7th Floor Conference Center, University Hall at Montclair State University. Doors will open at 11:30 am ET and attendees can RSVP or find further information here.

About the Trust for Public Land

Trust for Public Land (TPL) is a national nonprofit that works to connect everyone to the benefits and joys of the outdoors. As a leader in equitable access to the outdoors, TPL works with communities to create parks and protect public land where they are needed most. Since 1972, TPL has protected more than 4 million acres of public land, created more than 5,364 parks, trails, schoolyards, and iconic outdoor places, raised $93 billion in public funding for parks and public lands, and connected nearly 9.4 million people to the outdoors. To learn more, visit

About Montclair State University’s PSEG Institute for Sustainability Studies

Montclair State University’s PSEG Institute for Sustainability Studies supports transdisciplinary research and community projects that grow more resilient communities globally. Through partnerships with New Jersey-based and multinational corporations and organizations, we address local and global sustainability challenges including climate change, emissions, energy, clean water, waste, food and food insecurity.

About The Center for Cooperative Media

The mission of the Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair State University is to grow and strengthen local journalism and support an informed society in New Jersey and beyond. Learn more at