From Morehead to Murray: The State Department's Impact on Kentucky

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#State4States: The Department of State has direct impact on the state of Kentucky

From Morehead to Murray: The State Department's Impact on Kentucky

The State Department benefits the American people by advancing U.S. national security, promoting our economic interests, providing services, and reaffirming our country’s exceptional role in the world. The State Department directly impacts the “Bluegrass State” of Kentucky through environmental partnerships, law enforcement training, and counterterrorism cooperation. 

First, the State Department impacts Kentucky on environmental issues through the EcoPartnerships program. EcoPartnerships between the United States and China harness the energy and ingenuity in both countries to conduct innovative projects. There are 38 current and graduated EcoPartnerships involving approximately 15 provinces and municipalities in China and 20 states in the U.S., including Kentucky. The U.S.-China EcoPartnership between the University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research and Jiangsu Wisdom Engineering & Technology aims to reduce and control flue gas emissions in energy-intensive industries. By the end of 2016, the University of Kentucky/Jiangsu Wisdom Oil and Gas Recovery Unit successfully bid and won contracts with the Jinling Petrochemical Project, Zhenhai Petrochemical Project, and Dalian West Pacific Petrochemical Project. In addition to delivering new commercial contracts, the project generates new engineering experience and lessons on flue gas emission control and reductions for U.S. industrial sectors.

Secondly, the State Department partners with Kentucky law enforcement to share best practices with foreign police counterparts. In 2017, the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL) and the Department of Justice International Criminal Investigative Training Assistance Program partnered with the Kentucky State Police Academy, as well as the Nashville City Police Academy in Tennessee, to engage the Ukrainian Ministry of Internal Affairs on the merits of a single Basic Patrol Police Academy as an entry point into the Ukrainian police force. As a result of their discussions, all future police in Ukraine will be recruited into the police force through the Patrol Police Academy. INL also partnered with the Louisville Metro Police Department to introduce a cadre of Ukrainian women law enforcement officers to international women’s associations. Building on those connections, and in close partnership with the Canadian Embassy to Ukraine, Ukrainian law have since launched their own national association. Through these exchanges, Kentucky law enforcement learned more about the Ukrainian people and law enforcement practices, and the Ukrainian government officials and law enforcement officers gained new perspectives and ideas to put into practice upon their return home.

Finally, connections are also made through the recognition of common goals, and the State Department impacts Kentucky through the shared goal of countering violent extremism (CVE). The Strong Cities Network – launched and sustained by the State Department – is a global network of mayors, municipal-level policy makers, and practitioners united in building social cohesion and community resilience. The network is made up of over 125 cities worldwide, including Louisville, Kentucky. In February 2018, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer co-led a delegation to India with Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait, which included a meeting with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. During the trip, the delegation met with government, business, and non-governmental leaders to discuss ways to make cities safer and communities more resilient given the rise in extremist groups around the world.

From Morehead to Murray, the State Department impacts Kentucky communities through partnerships that counter terrorism, improve the environment, and build ties between law enforcement professionals. And Kentuckians, in return, impact communities around the globe.

Find out more about the Department of State's impact in American communities at Department of State by State.

Editor's Note: This entry also appears in the U.S. Department of State's publication on Medium.

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