Environment and Race: The Work of Sustainable Community Building
Department of Environment & Sustainability @ OWU
We welcome Alex Clemetson to Ohio Wesleyan to speak to us about his work and experiences surrounding environmentalism and race.
The intention of this discussion is to begin an initial examination into the intersections of environmental justice and injustice, race, and the communities that surround these co-existing realities. Within this DOES Lunch we will also examine the foundations of the communities we are connected to and the sustainable practices of community building that may or may not be in place.
Please come and learn about his experiences and collaborating to make the field of the environment a more equitable space.
When: Tuesday 05 October 2021 at noon Where: SCSC #207 (GIS Lab)
We’re currently working on some form of food available, so please let Dr. Rowley know if you have any food restrictions.
As many know, in the last few years, I’ve taken a dive into teaching and research on environmental issues. I’m very excited that this paper that I have co-authored with Dakota Goodman has been published by Friends of the River this week – “Deliver the River: States’ Rights, Cost-Benefit, and Environmental Justice on California’s Stanislaus River.” Friends of the River is the non-profit in California that my father helped to co-found in 1973, to lead the campaign to save the Stanislaus from a wasteful and unneeded New Melones Dam and Reservoir. After my father passed away, I got his files on this, and we were able to use those to rerun and update the case against the dam, including cost-benefit assumptions, and we have shown the extent of the loss, and lies, that were used to sell the dam – and document the harm it has done ecologically and to local communities. And, we show the way forward to deliver the river, finally about 50 years later, so that the Camp 9 Run on the Stanislaus can finally be liberated and a better way of water management achieved in California.
I hope folks can take a few minutes and read (and feel free to share!) the article – it’s both a strong personal tribute to my dad, but more importantly to the river we all lost, and yet still remains under the reservoir, waiting to flow once more.
Ohio Wesleyan Reaffirms University’s Commitment to Paris Agreement
By Cole Hatcher
In June 2017, I signed the We Are Still In declaration on behalf of Ohio Wesleyan University, promising that Ohio Wesleyan would remain committed to the Paris Agreement to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change, even if the United States pulled out of the agreement.
As the United States officially withdraws from the Paris Agreement on November 4, we proudly reaffirm our commitment to it.
At the time I signed the We Are Still In declaration, Ohio Wesleyan was one of 183 colleges and universities to have joined that commitment. We are encouraged that during the past two years the We Are Still In compact has grown to include more than 400 colleges and universities and more than 3,500 other U.S. cities, states, businesses, and other organizations. Clearly, support across America is strong and unwavering for the Paris Agreement and for doing all we can to slow and halt global warming.
The We’re Still In document states in part: “It is imperative that the world know that in the U.S., the actors that will provide the leadership necessary to meet our Paris commitment are found in city halls, state capitals, colleges and universities, investors and businesses. Together, we will remain actively engaged with the international community as part of the global effort to hold warming to well below 2℃ and to accelerate the transition to a clean energy economy that will benefit our security, prosperity, and health.”
We have a moral responsibility to future generations to join with all of humanity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fight manmade climate change. Climate impacts are already evident globally with rising seas, drought, and severe fires. The looming crisis could be infinitely more damaging than this pandemic and affects people of color and those living in poverty most severely. We are fighting to protect human health, the global economy, national security, and life as we know it. Climate change is an existential threat.
We urge our nation’s leaders to reverse course and not only rejoin the 186 other nations that have ratified the Paris Agreement but also become a leader in bringing together governments from around the world to overcome humanity’s greatest challenge.
In partnership with The Ohio State University-Mansfield Campus, please join us for an updated overview of the Ohio Microfarm Project.
See the second-year results of this three-year project! The October 23rd event virtually showcases community partnerships, urban farming, resiliency of farming, and co-op development. The October 24th event is brought to you by the Richland Gro-Op and will exhibit two urban microfarm and two rural microfarm outings, all a result of the input received from last year’s symposium.
Schedule: 2020 Ohio Microfarm Project Virtual Symposium October 23, 2020
Midwest Climate Summit to Accelerate Climate Action for Midwest Region
If the 12 Midwest states were a country, it would be the fifth-largest greenhouse gas-emitting nation on the planet. The Midwest Climate Summit, hosted by Ohio State and Washington University: St. Louis with support from the Bloomberg Foundation, kicks off its Fall 2020 Think Tank program on Oct. 2 at 11 a.m. EDT, featuring Robert Bullard, the Father of Environmental Justice. The Think Tank continues with additional sessions Oct. 9, 23, Nov. 6, 20 and plans are being developed for a large spring event. Join us as experts from Ohio State and across the Midwest accelerate climate action, develop a Midwestern response and plan the next steps in solving our climate crisis. About the summit: https://midwestclimatesummit.wustl.edu/
Each virtual session will have a unique theme and discussion goals, so join us for all sessions or the sessions most important to your interests. You can find detailed information, session themes and Summit schedules at midwestclimatesummit.wustl.edu. All sessions are free and open to the public but registration is required to gain entrance.
How can we hack ‘business as usual’ for our campuses and communities to face our current crises better and together? Join us via Zoom for a virtual series of sessions grappling with global warming, including the critical matters of racial equity and climate justice.
At our first Sustainability Task Force (STF) Meeting for the Fall of 2020, we heard from Jess Wilber of the Citizens Climate Lobby. Jess provided us with some “homework” to do in the next month, nicely summarized on the graphic included in this post. Click on the image for a PDF file of the document.
If you missed the meeting, it was recorded and you can watch it here.
Efforts include joining the OWU and national CCL group, registering to vote, getting involved in calling campaigns (they work!), getting involved in letter-writing campaigns (they work too), and registering for climate-related events.
OWU’s student chapter is already hard at work on these efforts. The student chapter of CCL meets every 1st and third Sunday at 4-4:30ish for an hour or so, and has additional events planned for the Fall semester. Please contact us if you want to attend these Zoom meetings.
For our next STF meeting, Tuesday, Oct. 13 (6:30-7:30 pm, Zoom) Jess will rejoin us to see how we are doing, and we can talk about and plan more efforts for the 2020-21 academic year.
Above left: mysterious Olentangy River object, near OWU Campus Above right: possibly less mysterious, but still really interesting: Jess Wilber, STF guest from Citizens Climate Lobby; Jess is Great Lakes Regional Fellow International Outreach Intern
Join us for the first Sustainability Task Force (STF) meeting of the Fall 2020 semester: Tuesday, September 8 at 6:30-7:30 pm on Zoom.
For the Fall semester of 2020, we are focusing on work with the Citizens Climate Lobby – our OWU student group and the national organization.
We plan to set short and longer-term goals during the meeting. You will be part of those goals.
Joining us is Jess Wilber: a fourth-year student at Oberlin College with a double-major in Environmental Studies and East Asian Studies, a double-minor in Politics and History, and a concentration in International Affairs. She has spent the last two and a half years working for Citizens’ Climate Lobby, an international grassroots non-profit, non-partisan organization that empowers everyday people to work together on effective climate change solutions. She helped to pioneer their current programs for students in Higher Education. She was among the first members of the Campus Leaders Program, which seeks to educate and empower students to become effective climate advocates and organizers in their communities. As part of that program, she founded the Oberlin College CCL Chapter, or OCEAL, and worked with the local CCL chapter to get the Oberlin City Council to pass a resolution endorsing Carbon Fee and Dividend. She also got the same endorsement from the Oberlin College Sustainability Committee and President Carmen Ambar later that year. She was then hired as the organization’s first Regional Fellow, working to expand CCL’s Higher Ed Action Team and directly overseeing its growth. She has also held various internship positions with CCL, including Higher Education Outreach, Volunteer Education & Engagement, and International Outreach.
ROAR is a central Ohio group of climate and environmental activists. Their latest event is on Zoom, featuring some great speakers on contemporary politics and the environment.
We’d welcome your presence at ROAR’s next NEXT WORLD CONVERSATION on DEMOCRACY UNCHAINED… with David Orr from the Oberlin Project and Joel Wainwright, co-author of CLIMATE LEVIATHAN. How can we rebuild our democracy to significantly address the interlocking crises of Covid, Climate Change and our dysfunctional political system? Please join us–and spread the word!
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 8:00 pm: DEMOCRACY UNCHAINED
David W. Orr is the Paul Sears Distinguished Professor of Environmental Studies and Politics and Special Assistant to the President of Oberlin College. The Oberlin Project was formed out of David Orr’s vision of full-spectrum sustainability: an all-encompassing joint venture by the town and College to create a thriving, sustainable and environmentally friendly community in Oberlin. He is the recipient of six honorary degrees and other awards including The Millennium Leadership Award from Global Green, the Bioneers Award, the National Wildlife Federation Leadership Award, a Lyndhurst Prize acknowledging “persons of exceptional moral character, vision, and energy.” He has been a scholar in residence at Ball State University, the University of Washington, and other universities. He has lectured at hundreds of colleges and universities throughout the U.S. and Europe. He has served as a Trustee for many organizations including the Rocky Mountain Institute, the Aldo Leopold Foundation, and the Bioneers. He has been a Trustee and/or advisor to ten foundations.
Joel Wainwright is Professor in the Department of Geography at Ohio State University, where he studies political economy, social theory, and environmental change. He is author of Decolonizing Development (2008), Geopiracy (2013), and, with Geoff Mann, Climate Leviathan (2018).