When most people retire, they kick back, take cruises, and visit the grandchildren. Sally Stovall was not most people. She did, indeed, relish visiting her grandchildren, but after she retired from a career in organizational development, Sally embarked on a new, vibrant career as climate activist and community organizer.
In September 2010, Sally and her partner, Dick Alton, were worried about global warming and decided to hold a community meeting to see if others felt the same way. Out of the woodwork poured a cohort of people with the same concerns --no real surprise in progressive Oak Park.
Each day’s news seems to pitch us deeper into the pits of despair: climate change action feels stalled, or worse, rolled back.
According to the latest report by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (a body of the world’s most respected scientists from 195 countries), climate change is here, and it’s accelerating faster than many models predicted. What’s more, climate change will usher in catastrophic food shortages and natural disasters by 2040 unless we change course.
Saving food starts with your mindset. It’s a skill, as well as a passion. Like a muscle, it strengthens as you use it!
We can make a big difference by becoming food waste warriors! We don’t usually think of food being a major source of greenhouse gases that cause climate change, but according to research published in 2017 in the book, DRAWDOWN, edited by Paul Hawken, “reduced food waste” was ranked as the 3rd most effective of the 80 solutions that could actually reverse global warming.
At the closing celebration for the One Earth Film Festival, Isaiah Mākar presented his Spoken Word piece, “Earth’s Breakup Letter: Please Don’t Leave Me for Mars,” on March 11, at the Garfield Park Conservatory. Recently, he answered a few questions about his journey from a shy kid to a Spoken Word entrepreneur. This interview is followed by his Spoken Word poem from the closing celebration.
Understanding of the importance of reducing food waste is growing. France has recently become the first country to prohibit supermarkets from throwing away food based on its sell-by date. They are required to donate the food to a charity rather than dispose of it.
We may be a long way from mandating food donations nationally, but there is a lot that we can do in our own homes. Within the US, we are responsible in our homes for 43% of the food waste.
The Pivot Arts Festival and Chicago Community Climate Partners will present an evening of Art and Activism from 5:30 to 8:40 p.m. Saturday, June 9, at Loyola University’s Institute for Environmental Sustainability at 6349 N. Kenmore Ave., in Chicago.
The evening begins with a reception and tours of the LEED-certified, sustainable building at 5:30 p.m. A pre-performance panel will convene at 6:30 p.m., before "Not Every Mountain," to discuss the impact of climate change locally, legislative victories, and arts activism.
Meet architect, planner and author Douglas Farr from 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, June 13, at the Oak Park Public Library, 834 Lake St., in Oak Park. Discuss ideas from his new book, "Sustainable Nation: Urban Design Patterns for the Future." His first book, "Sustainable Urbanism: Urban Design with Nature" helped shift the focus of urban sustainability from the stand-alone building to the high-performance neighborhood.
Dave and Ol are two Brits who work for environmental charities. Each week, they digest the latest environmental news stories, speak with experts, and spout their own opinions in their 30- to 40-minute, light comedy podcast, Sustainababble, which has as its motto: “Trying to be cheery in the face of impending ecological disaster.” Blimey.
The Resilient Communities Forum on Jan. 31 at the Nineteenth Century Club drew 175 residents from Oak Park and River Forest. They heard from municipal and environmental leaders on ways nations and communities are addressing the challenges of climate change.
On Wednesday, Jan. 31, the Oak Park and River Forest area residents are invited to participate in the Resilient Communities Forum. We will hear first-hand how nations and communities are addressing the challenges of climate change, and explore practical ways in which we can make a real impact locally. The event takes place from 6:30-8:30 pm, at the 19th Century Club, 178 Forest Ave in Oak Park, IL.
Dallas Goldtooth, an activist with the Indigenous Environmental Network who helped stop the Keystone XL pipeline, is still advocating for sustained demonstrations and non-violent actions.
“We need a story of change…of resistance,” he told a gathering of close to 1500 civic leaders, community members, and representatives from 70 civic and environmental organizations that attended the Chicago Community Climate Forum, held Dec. 3 at The Field Museum.
Oak Park resident, Jason Funk, attended the UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn, Germany, in November. Jason, the Associate Director of Land Use at the Center for Carbon Removal, answered a few questions about his experience.
As world leaders gather in Bonn, Germany, for the first UN Climate Change Conference since the Trump Administration pulled the US out of the Paris Climate Agreement, it is clear from the surge of climate change conferences and events in the Chicago region that cities and local government entities, universities, community organizations and businesses are moving forward to take action on climate change and to activate their constituencies to do the same.
A recently published scientific peer-reviewed study identified 4 high-impact lifestyle choices that produce the greatest reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. The comprehensive study analyzed 39 peer-reviewed articles, carbon calculators and government sources to quantify the most high-impact personal lifestyle choices in developed countries.
How will we feed the world amid climate change? And what can we do about the rise in food allergies? Three scientists will address these issues at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 20, at Argonne National Laboratory, 9700 S. Cass Ave, in Argonne. This event is free and open to the public. A reception will begin at 6 p.m. Register here.
When 195 countries signed the Paris Agreement in December of 2015, it was an unprecedented expression of global solidarity on climate change.
The Administration's decision to pull out of the Paris Climate Agreement is a serious blow to that international accord. This is the first time in my memory that the U.S. has become almost universally viewed as a rogue nation.
Lace up your walking shoes and get ready to march for 3 important causes: Science, Climate, and Labor. As some of these issues come under threat, your voice and presence is ever more crucial. Choose 1, 2, or all 3 marches to put our democratic principles into action.
The election has ended. Donald Trump is our president-elect. As a candidate he threatened to dismantle the EPA and rip up the Paris Agreement. As president-elect, he named climate denier Myron Ebell to lead his EPA transition team.
Over the last 60 years, Audubon Society members have not only been dedicated bird watchers, but also citizen scientists, collecting data on bird sightings and activity. Audubon’s scientists have used that wealth of data and top climate models to put together a sort of “field guide of the future,” based on the birds’ ideal climatic ranges and how those would shift due to expected greenhouse gas emissions.
The PlanItGreen Sustainability Plan for Oak Park and River Forest – was created through compiling baseline data and holding many community forums, led by Seven Generations Ahead in collaboration with the Delta Institute. The planning was funded primarily by the Oak Park River Forest Community Foundation’s Communityworks Endowment Fund. Communityworks has three priority areas, including Environmental Sustainability. PlanItGreen was established as a 10 year plan in this area, beginning in 2011. Thus, we are half-way through the Plan.
The big news this month is the commitment made by CCL staff and 1,000 assembled volunteers at the International Conference: to have a Carbon Fee & Dividend bill introduced in Congress in 2017, and to secure its passage. This is a new chapter for CCL, so come to the meeting to hear a report on the conference and the beginnings of a new legislative strategy. Our guest speaker this month on the national conference call will be Matthew Anderson, director of the National Audubon Society's Climate Initiative. In 2014, Audubon released a report, Birds and Climate Change, which found that 314 bird species — nearly half of all North American birds — are severely threatened by global warming.
Area congregations have demonstrated that they can make significant contributions to community sustainability through their facilities and operations including installation of geothermal and solar systems, energy efficiency retrofits, native and edible gardens, and zero waste programs, as well as advocacy for sustainable policies.
Guest speaker for the Citizens' Climate Lobby's March meeting will be Congressman Carlos Curbelo, a Republican who represents Florida's 26th District. He recently formed the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus in the House along with Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL). Congressman Curbelo was also the first Republican to cosponsor the climate resolution introduced by Rep. Chris Gibson (R-NY) last September.