Apr 30: Seminar on renewable energy: credits & offsets

Renewable Energy for Sustainable Communities: Credits and Offsets 

As the scale of the climate crisis becomes clearer with each record rainfall and melting glacier, the need for deploying multiple technical solutions in both the public and private sectors becomes more urgent. At the same time, national and local governments worldwide are strapped in responding to the already-present climate consequences, and slowing consumer growth has most corporations tightening their wallets. Resource wars for water and food are already looming, with defense budgets being increased, and many on the private side are either waiting-out compliance legislation, or actively fighting it.  Meanwhile, rural and low-income communities are particularly vulnerable to rising energy costs from peaking fuels, and many already suffer from the impacts of extreme weather. At issue is how such communities might increase self-reliance and sus-tainability now, and how community-based solutions can integrate with and contribute to the larger need for carbon-free energy. In this talk, I will explain 1) what carbon credits and emission offsets are; 2) how they are assisting a number of communities in achieving sustainability and savings today, and 3) what obstacles exist in expanding this potential.  Key to known community successes, particularly outside the United States, is the collaborative and cooperative attitudes within the communities; is there trust, is there openness and willingness to share?  Of course, in several cases, these actions are happening within rather homogenous cultures with a common faith. We must consider if our religious communities, particularly in the multi-cultural US, foster these cooperative attitudes, or hinder them.  Can we find common ground within our diverse faith beliefs and values that might actually energize, unite and fuel our communities in the transition to new ways of sharing energy and other resources. 
George Hoguet,  Director of Business Development for NativeEnergy, Inc in Vermont, earned his Bachelors of Science, Electrical Engineering from the University of Dayton, Ohio.  He worked in the electrical power and controls industry from 1970 to 2000 advancing from field sales engineer through Vice-President of Marketing roles.  In 2001, after reading The Reinvention of Work by Matthew Fox, he declared that his lifework would be in advancing sustainable living.  Since then, he has served as Coordinator for the Million Solar Roofs and Cool Pennsylvania Programs, led the Energy & Climate Caucus at the 2002 Philadelphia Earth Charter Summit, and has been an active member of Citizens for Pennsylvania's Future, PennEnvironment, and a Steering Committee member of the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia.  In 2004, he joined NativeEnergy to help develop the calculation methodologies of, and market for, carbon offsets from animal waste digesters on Pennsylvania family dairy farms.  In 2007, he relocated to NativeEnergy’s headquarters in Vermont, where he is responsible for expanding the company’s marketing outreach with key business partners and non-profit organizations. He is a practicing Buddhist and a member of The Climate Project, one of the 2600 trained volunteer presenters for Al Gore’s slideshow from the film, An Inconvenient Truth. 
5:30-6:30 p.m. at Marriott SpringHill Suites, Southside Works.

Apr 28: Actions Against the War on Women: Pgh and Hbg

Action Against the War on Women

A Call To Action To Defend Women's Rights!

Help defend women's rights and pursuit of equality. 
Join Americans all over the United States on April 28th, 2012, as they come together as one to tell legislators all over the country... "enough is enough"!

Please join Occupy Pittsburgh in Solidarity with the National Action Against the War on Women.

Everyone is welcome to join as we stand together and demand that every person be granted equal opportunities, equal rights, and equal representation regardless of their reproductive organs.

Join in to learn what’s being done, why it matters and what YOU can do about it!

11-2 p.m. on Flagstaff Hill (the open slope between Phipps Conservatory and Carnegie Mellon).  At 1p.m., join Team Uterati for a rousing game of tag.
Watch out for the legislators!
And for information on the main Pennsylvania action in Harrisburg, check out its Facebook page.


Apr 28: Healthy Body, Healthy Home, Healthy Planet Workshop

Heighten your awareness and take action around the issue of carcinogens and toxins that you come into contact with daily through the products you use and food you eat. Get practical solutions such as safe alternatives and healthy lifestyle choices.
11 am – 12:30 pm at Construction Junction in Point Breeze.  Cost $20 single/ $25 couple and includes a green cleaning kit.  Register here or call Sarah Alessio Shea at 412-488-7490 ext. 236

Apr 28: Indoor local market in Forest Hills

The second indoor(*) market will feature honey, bee products, natural skin care items, plants, teas, CSA farm information (**), Backyard Garden Packages, fair trade coffee, baked goods and more. 

All of what's offered here at the indoor market has a local connection, and so the benefits are significant for everyone: In addition to being just plain good for you, the products sold will be supporting small, start-up businesses, which in turn strengthens the Pittsburgh economy. That is, keeping your dollars here in Pittsburgh (instead of getting the so-called "better deals" at Big Box stores -- who simply ship your dollars to shareholders in distant cities) means your money circulates hereand helps to build the city we live in. 

In a nutshell, by buying at local markets you get carefully made, small batch items directly from the producer...and that person doesn't have to watch all their profits go into the pockets of middle men. And the local economy grows: It's a win-win deal all around. (Er, ooops, not everyone: Wall Street loses...sorry, guys.)

So please tell your friends and neighbors to mark their calendars...and stop in on the 28th for samples, for great products, for conversation and more.

People connecting with people directly: This is what building local community looks like!

* (...with the possibility of moving out-of-doors, weather permitting!) 
** CSA: Community-Supported Agriculture, weekly shares of local farms' fields, direct from those fields on the days it's harvested.

Saturday, April 28th, 2pm-5pm, at 220 Overdale Rd. in Forest Hills.  For more information, contact Elizabeth.

Apr 27: Arbor Day

Happy Arbor Day!  Take the time to appreciate all that trees do for us.  

And visit TreePittsburgh to see how you can become involved;  here's an online copy of their latest newsletter.  Help out at a tree planting, sign up to train as a Tree Tender, or learn more about Pittsburgh's trees at an upcoming happy hour.

Also, my next Sustainability Salon will focus on forests.  I'm still working out the optimum date for May...

Apr 26: SEER Environmental Expo at CMU

Carnegie Mellon's Steinbrenner Institute for Environmental Education and Research invites you to their Environmental Expo!  The Expo is a showcase of the eclectic projects and research being performed by Carnegie Mellon students, staff and faculty.

Some exhibits to be included in the Expo:

“High Point Pittsburgh-Virtually There”
High Point Pittsburgh - Virtually There is a computer-based, Internet accessible “virtual destination” presenting a public facility proposed for the one-acre roof top of the U. S. Steel Tower. 

The Carnegie Mellon Community Vegetable Garden Group
The exhibit will explain the history of the CMU community vegetable garden and show how it has enriched CMU’s campus and student community.

The project is a prototype mobile water play space with a closed loop water treatment system. The closed loop system includes a waterslide and visible treatment systems.

“The Story of White"
“The Story of White" is a case study that explores the impact of hazardous waste regulation and TRI reporting on the titanium dioxide manufacturing sector, with a particular focus on dioxin releases.

“Aeroponic Plants & Airport Design”
This project is an investigation of the potential air filtering plants have to both act as a system which would reduce the loads on the mechanical ventilation equipment but also contribute to the sense of place and architectural expression of the airport terminal.

“ Solar Splash”
Solar Splash is an undergraduate student team designing and constructing a solar-electric boat.  Research undertaken as part of this project includes making the mechanical and electrical aspects of a solar boat as efficient and effective as possible.

“Zero Waste Event Planning”
Learn from others on campus how to plan and implement a zero waste event where the majority of the ’waste’ can be collected for composting.  

4-6 p.m. in Rangos 2 & 3 of CMU's University Center

Apr 24: Sandra Steingraber at W&J

Dr. Sandra Steingraber, ecologist, poet, writer and cancer survivor, will lecture at Washington & Jefferson College on environmental pollution and cancer.  An expert on environmental pollution and its link to cancer, Steingraber rose to national prominence with her best-selling 1997 book Living Downstream: An Ecologist's Personal Investigation of Cancer and the Environment, which has recently been updated (2010) and adapted into a motion picture of the same title. She has also written Having Faith: An Ecologist's Journey to Motherhood (2003) and Raising Elijah: Protecting Children in an Age of Environmental Crisis (2011), exploring the impact of environmental toxins during human fetal development and childhood. Her most recent work includes lead authorship of an open letter, “Appeal to Governor Cuomo to Consider Cancer Risks Re: High Volume Hydraulic Fracturing for Natural Gas.”
Steingraber has keynoted conferences on human health and the environment throughout the United States and Canada and has been invited to lecture at many universities, medical schools, and hospitals—including Harvard, Yale, Cornell, Columbia, and the Woods Hole Research Center. She is recognized for her ability to serve as a two-way translator between scientists and activists.  She has testified in the European Parliament, before the President’s Cancer Panel, and has participated in briefings to Congress and before United Nations delegates in Geneva, Switzerland.
“Dr. Steingraber is an internationally-recognized expert on the connection between environmental pollutants and cancer, a topic of great importance to our area,” said Candy DeBerry, Ph.D., associate professor of biology at W&J. “It is a pleasure to welcome her to campus to give people in this region an opportunity to learn and benefit from her expertise.”
Called “the new Rachel Carson” by Sierra magazine, Steingraber is the recipient of numerous awards for her work as a writer, scientist, and human rights activist, including a Heinz Award in November 2011 as an individual “whose remarkable mix of vision, creativity and passion has produced significant achievements benefitting the environment.”
Steingraber is currently a distinguished scholar in residence at Ithaca College in Ithaca, New York.
7 p.m. at Washington & Jefferson College’s Olin Fine Arts Center.  A book signing will follow her talk.  The event is free and open to the public.

Apr 24: Primary elections! Link to voter guide

PA - simple

Please be sure to get out and vote!  In case you're not up on all the races but would like to further progressive causes, here's a link to the Progressive Voters' Guide put out by Keystone Progress.  It's kind of a summary of the endorsements of many different Pennsylvania progressive groups.

Apr 24: Slow Foods Spudfest

Slow Food Pittsburgh
Celebrate the Spud and its local artisans, while celebrating Earth Day!  Sip premium Boyd & Blair vodka and meet the makers.  Use it to toast western Pennsylvania's king and queen of potato-growing, Rick & Rita, and hear their tale.  Learn to grow taters in a trash can.  Sit down together for a never-ending pot-luck (BYOB) in Chatham Village's beautiful antebellum club house on Mt. Washington.

6 pm at Chatham Village Club House, 1080 Pennridge Road (Pennridge at Olympia), 15211.  $12 members, $15 others, under 5 free; proceeds benefit PASA.  Online registration and lots more information here.

Apr 23-27: City Earth Week

Following on the heels of Earth Day, Pittsburgh will have an outdoor environmental expo downtown in Market Square, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. each day.

Apr 22: National Sing Out for Earth Day

Earth Day

Pittsburgh's participation (at Point Park) in NATIONAL SING OUT FOR EARTH DAY!
At 3 p.m. (Eastern), 2 p.m. (Central), 1 p.m. (Mountain) and noon (Pacific time), a song will ring out at Earth Day events across the country.  We'll sing “This Land Is Your Land” TOGETHER in the key of D (for consistency) across the nation all at the same time. Videotaped performances from around the country will be used to create a montage of the events.  iPhones, Vimeo cams, flip phones - anything goes!

Elsewhere, folks like Pete Seeger, Tom Chapin,  Janis Ian, Toshi Reagon, The Klezmatics and David Amram and many others will lead an Earth Day sing-along in Tarrytown, NY;  Country Joe MacDonald will participate in the Berkeley, CA sing-along.  Meanwhile, in Pittsburgh, folks will meet in Point Park and sing in front of the fountain (weather permitting) at 3 p.m. sharp (Otherwise, we'll sing under the overpass in Point Park).  Participants are invited to bring kids, musical instruments, terrible towels, costumes (tree, dolphin – use your imagination!), signs, earth flags  … Arrive at the park between 2:15 and 2:30. We’ll warm up/rehearse for about a half hour, and then we’ll start at 3 PM SHARP.
It’ll all be over by 3:15 so don’t be late.  The more the merrier!

If you can video the event or volunteer in some other capacity – crowd control, writing a new verse, passing out water, song sheets, etc. call Anne Feeney, 412-877-6480.

Spread the word!

Follow this template for your event.  Please try to start singing in they key of D at Noon PDT; 1PM MDT; 2PM CDT; 3PM EDT, 8 PM in Ireland, 9PM in Stockholm/Copenagen,10 PM in Harare... and be sure to film it.  Either post it to youtube, and send the link to halih@yahoo.com, or contact Hali to talk about other ways of getting your video included.

CONTACT:  Anne Feeney, anne@annefeeney.com (412) 877-6480

Apr 22: Hazelwood Greenway cleanup

Happy Earth Day!

Looking for a way to give back to Mother Earth for all she’s given you???  Well, look no further… here's the gift that keeps on giving: a cleanup of illegally dumped debris in the Hazelwood Greenway.

The group of 50 Allegheny Cleanways had scheduled for the cleanup had a mix-up in their plans, so they won’t be there.  If you can come out tomorrow (April 22) at 11:00 a.m., they sure would appreciate it.  And so would Mother Earth!!

They’ll be there from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m.  Refreshments and all supplies will be provided.  Wear long pants and sturdy closed-toe shoes or boots and be prepared for inclement weather.

If you can’t come out tomorrow, I hope to see you at one of the other Allegheny Cleanways events this season.

Finally, check out the Spring 2012 newsletter.  There is much exciting news to share, including a contest to name the new Tireless Project boat!

Apr 22: Earth Day Bike Parade

Bike for cleaner air!  Join the Rachel Carson Institute for the first Earth Day Bike Parade!  Meet at Eastside to bicycle over to Phipps Conservatory,  Enjoy a wonderful afternoon at Phipps featuring bands (Smokestack Lightning and The Newlanders & Mike Stout) and a chance for open mics, a family-friendly rally in honor of the 50th anniversary of the publication of Rachel Carson's Silent SpringThe Rally at Phipps will be under tents, in case of rain. Contact the Rachel Carson Institute at rci@chatham.edu for more info or to reserve a time on the open mic!
More information, and a route map, can be found here.

Apr 22: "The Apple Pushers" film screening and panel

Come to a special movie premiere event:  "The Apple Pushers" at an Earth Day film screening and live panel discussion.  “The Apple Pushers” is an uplifting true story about expanded access to fresh fruits and vegetables in the wake of a national food and obesity crisis. Narrated by Academy Award nominee Edward Norton, and followed by live panel discussion streamed from Austin with director Mary Mazzio, host Debi Mazar, and others. View the trailer online, and join us for this one-of-a-kind movie premiere event to kick off Whole Foods Market’s Do Something Reel Film Festival!
6 p.m. at the Cinemark theatre in Robinson Township (2100 Settlers Ridge Center Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15205).  Advance tickets $10 – purchase online here.  Seating is limited, and no tickets will be sold at the door!  Proceeds benefit The Farmstand Project, a program of the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank
If you can't make it to this screening, no worries -- watch this and other consciousness-raising films streaming online at dosomethingreel.com.

Apr 21: Earth Day at the Frick Environmental Center

Mayor and children planting a tree

Spend a day outdoors celebrating nature by participating in numerous family friendly, nature-oriented walks and workshops at this free Citiparks event sponsored by the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy and 91.3fm WYEP. The 151-acre Frick Woods Nature Reserve offers an extensive trail system and an impressive array of habitats filled with Pennsylvania's native plants.  
Activities include a ceremonial tree planting, eco art, nature walks, an animal encounter, and an invasive tree sweep.  Check out the web site for more details, but here are the basics:
Earth Day
Saturday, April 21, 2012 from 11:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Frick Environmental Center
2005 Beechwood Boulevard, Squirrel Hill
For more information (or to volunteer!),  call 412-422-6538 or visit the FEC web site.  If you need accommodation for a disability, contact Patty at that number, or by email at least five working days prior to the event.
Once again, the Earth Day Festival will go for the Gold level of certification for a Zero Waste event.  New this year:  a free shuttle service from Liberty, Faison, and Greenfield Elementary Schools:
  • Pick up Schedule to Frick: 11:00 a.m., Noon, 1:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m. & 3:00 p.m.
  • Departure Schedule from Frick: 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m. & 4:30 p.m.

Apr 20: Green Drinks with the light/motion collaborative

When the Port Authority asked architects to compete for the station design for the North Shore Connector, Gary Carlough and Rob Pfaffmann looked at the national competition from large architecture and engineering firms specializing in transit projects and proposed a team that went against conventional wisdom--two small, well-recognized, local design firms in a joint venture reflecting their vision for the station a station that celebrates light and motion. The two firms hold common values about innovative design, sustainability and urban context, inspiring them to join forces. In addition, Rob and Gary had taught together at Carnegie Mellon and a number of employees had worked at both firms. The team's  idea for bringing light deep into the station, combined with its passion for design and capacity for  technical innovation, set it apart at the interviews, and resulted in the award of the commission over much larger competitors. 
Rob Pfaffmann, AIA, AICP, is an architect and planner with over thirty years of diverse experience leading the design of key architecture, preservation and planning projects in the Pittsburgh Region.  

 Gary Carlough, AIA, founded EDGE studio in 1995 and has over thirty years of experience in  projects that include complex system design for technology and research facilities to adaptive reuse of historic buildings, LEED and sustainable design. 
5-9 p.m. at Elements, 444 Liberty Ave., Pgh, 15222   412-251-0168.  Join us for complimentary appetizers and numerous drink specials.  Validated parking is available in the Gateway Center.  

What is Green Drinks? Every month, people who work in the environmental field or have an interest in a greener planet meet up for drinks all around the world at informal sessions known as Green Drinks. We have a lively mixture of people from NGO's, academia, government and business. Come along and you'll be made welcome. Just say,"are you Green?' and we will look after you and introduce you to whoever is there. It's a great way of catching up with people you know and also for making some new contacts. Everyone invites someone else along, so there is always a different crowd, making Green Drinks an organic, self-organizing network.
These events are simple and unstructured.  Make friends, develop new ideas, do deals and forge a new organic future. It's a force for the good and we' like to help it spreading to other cities.  Green Drinks meets on the third Friday of the month.  Put it on your calendar and count on it: Green Drinks is happening every month.
Email us at pittsburghgreendrinks@gmail.com with questions, comments. 
 Pittsburgh Green Drinks Data Sheet
WHAT: The world-famous Green Drinks
WHEN: Third Friday of the month, 5:00-9:00 pm
STATUS: Informal, self-organizing network
GLOBAL: Now active in 812 cities worldwide. Every month globally since 1989, locally since 2005. 
Average attendance: 90
WHERE: Rotating venues in Pittsburgh
HOW: Walk, cycle, bus, boat, taxi or drive
WHO: Anyone working on environmental issues 
(or who wants to!)
WHY: Fun, contacts, alcohol (or not), info, gossip, inspiration, business and pleasure
NEW: Just go up to someone and say "are you green?", and you'll be made welcome.

Apr 18: "Sustainable Underground" book talk

Join Big Idea and the Shadbush Collective for a reading and discussion with Stephen Hren, author of Tales from the Sustainable Underground:  A Wild Journey with People Who Care More About the Planet than the Law.

Activists striving for any type of social change often find themselves operating on the fringes of legal and social norms. Many experience difficulties when their innovative ideas run afoul of antiquated laws and regulations that favor a big business energy- and material-intensive approach. Tales From the Sustainable Underground is packed with the stories of just some of these pioneers—who care more for the planet than the rules—whether they're engaged in natural building, permaculture, community development, or ecologically based art. Ride along and meet courageous and inspiring individuals such as:
  • Solar guru Ed Eaton
  • Radical urban permaculturists Scott Kellogg and Stacy Pettigrew
  • Artist, eco-architect, and intuitive builder Matt Bua
Equally entertaining and informative, the profiles in this highly original book provide a unique lens through which to view deeper questions about the societal structures that are preventing us from attaining a more sustainable world. By examining such issues as the nature of property rights and the function of art in society, the author raises profound questions about how our social attitudes and mores have contributed to our current destructive paradigm.
Tales From the Sustainable Underground is a must-read for sustainability activists in any field, or for anyone who wants to learn about more radical forms of sustainability activities in an entertaining way.

Stephen Hren is a restoration carpenter, builder, and teacher who specializes in sustainable design and passive and active solar heating technologies. He is co-author of The Carbon-Free Home and A Solar Buyer's Guide for the Home and Office.

7-9 p.m. at the Big Idea Bookstore and Cafe, 4812 Liberty Ave, Pgh 15224 (412-687-4323), thebigidea@gmail.com .

Apr 18-19: Climate Change & Shale Gas talks and Inconvenient Truth screening at CMU

Carnegie Mellon 2012 Pittsburgh Conference Lectures These CMU Chemistry lectures and film screening are part of this year's Pittsburgh ConferencePittCon is an annual Analytical Chemistry instrument show organized by the Spectroscopy Society of Pittsburgh (SSP) and the Society of Analytical Chemist of Pittsburgh (SACP).   

Wednesday, April 18  (7:30 p.m.):  FREE Kick-off movie — "An Inconvenient Truth"
In this documentary, former vice president Al Gore discusses the scientific evidence for climate change. William Schlesinger, dean of the Nicholas School of Environment and Earth Sciences at Duke University, said "He (Gore) got all the important material and got it right." The film won the 2007 Academy Awards for the Best Documentary Feature. Film critic Roger Ebert said, "… You owe it to yourself to see this film. If you do not, and you have grandchildren, you should explain to them why you decided not to."
7:30 p.m. — Free pizza 'til it's gone outside auditorium
7:55 p.m. — Brief Introduction
8:00 p.m. — Movie
For pizza, must RSVP by April 16: swainer@andrew.cmu.edu
Location: Carnegie Mellon University, Mellon Institute Auditorium (2nd Floor), 4400 Fifth Ave., Enter from Bellefield Street.
Free and open to the public.

Pittsburgh Conference Lectures by Robert Jackson, Duke University (info below)

Thursday, April 19 (4:45 p.m.)
Lecture I:  Greenhouse Gases and Climate Change: Some Science and Solutions
Location: Carnegie Mellon University, Department of Chemistry, Mellon Institute, 4400 Fifth Ave. Conference Room on the 3rd floor, Enter from Bellefield Street.
Free and open to the public.
Thursday, April 19  (6:00 p.m.)
Lecture II:  Shale Gas and its Environmental Interactions
6:00 p.m. — Cash Bar Social
7:00 p.m. — Dinner: $20 regular, $10 student. Cash or check payable to SSP or SACP at the door.
8:00 p.m. — Lecture is free to the public.
Location: Pittsburgh Athletic Assoc., 4215 Fifth Avenue, Oakland. Free parking in the PAA lot for the first 40 cars with token picked up inside.
RSVP: swainer@andrew.cmu.edu by April 16 with dinner choice (Crab cakes or Chicken Marsala or Grilled Veggie.).


Robert B. Jackson is the Nicholas Chair of Global Environmental Change at the Nicholas School of the Environment and a professor in the Biology Department. His research examines how people affect the earth, including studies of the global carbon and water cycles, biosphere/atmosphere interactions, energy use, and global change. He received his B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from Rice University (1983). He worked four years for the Dow Chemical Company before obtaining M.S. degrees in Ecology (1990) and Statistics (1992) and a Ph.D. in Ecology (1992) at Utah State University. He was a Department of Energy Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellow for Global Change at Stanford University and an assistant professor at the University of Texas before joining the Duke faculty in 1999. He is currently Director of Duke's Center on Global Change and Duke's Stable Isotope Mass Spectrometry Laboratory. He directs the Department of Energy-funded National Institute for Climate Change Research for the southeastern U.S. and co-directed the Climate Change Policy Partnership, working with energy and utility corporations to find practical strategies to combat climate change. Jackson has received numerous awards, including the Murray F. Buell Award from the Ecological Society of America, a 1999 Presidential Early Career Award in Science and Engineering from the National Science Foundation (one of 19 scientists honored at the White House by President Clinton), a Fellow in the American Geophysical Union, and inclusion in the top 0.5% of most cited scientific researchers (http://www.isihighlycited.com/). His 150+ peer-reviewed scientific publications have been cited more than 10,000 and 14,000 times in Web of Science and Google Scholar, respectively. His trade book on global change, The Earth Remains Forever, was published in October of 2002. Jackson's research has been covered in various newspapers and magazines, such as the Boston Globe, New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today, Scientific American, and BusinessWeek, and on national public radio, including the syndicated programs "Morning Edition", "All Things Considered", "Marketplace", "The Tavis Smiley Show", "The Next 200 Years", and "Earth and Sky" (for which he is a science advisor and scriptwriter). He conceived and organized the Janus Fellowship, an annual undergraduate award to encourage the study of an environmental problem from diverse perspectives; 1999's first recipient traveled down the Nile River to examine water use and water policy in Egypt.

Sponsored by:

PittCon, SSP, SACP, Carnegie Mellon, Environmental Group of the ACS Pittsburgh Section

Apr 18: Urban Forest Film Festival

urban forest film festival, tree pittsburgh

Tree Pittsburgh's Urban Forest Film Festival returns with films featuring trees and forests!
Join us for about an hour's worth of short films followed by a reception with refreshments and East End Brewing Company beer on Wednesday April 18th, at 7pm.
Films include:
        Treeverse  Uncage the Soul Productions,  Ascending the Giants
        Out of a Forest Tobias Gundorff Boesen, Animation Workshop, University College
        Seeing Red  David Gonzales, treefight.org
        Unchopping a Tree  Maya Lin, whatismissing.org
        Tales of the Rogue Pruner Tree Pittsburgh
        I Will be a Hummingbird Wangari Maathai, from Dirt the Movie
7pm at the Melwood Screening Room.  Suggestion Donation $5-$10, to support Tree Pittsburgh

Apr 15: YouthBuild coming to Pittsburgh?

In YouthBuild programs low-income youth ages 16 to 24 work full-time for 6 to 24 months toward their GEDs or high school diplomas and learn job skills by building affordable housing in their communities. Leadership training, education, and community service foster positive mini-communities that lead young people into college, careers, and civic engagement.

We hope you will join us for an inspiring evening with Dorothy Stoneman, founding director of  YouthBuild – she'll hold an informational and fund-raising session at a home in Squirrel Hill.  She'll bring several people actively involved in YouthBuild with her and there will be some local people who will be discussing their own plans to develop a sustainable YouthBuild project here in Pittsburgh.

Young people from YouthBuild programs will share their stories demonstrating that the power of love — coupled with genuine opportunities for education and self-development, hard work, and community service — can reverse the effects of past mistreatment and oppression, liberate enormous positive energy, and create an irresistible force for good.

Dorothy is an amazing person. She grew up in Massachusetts, and earned a BA from Harvard and a PhD from the Bank Street College of Education. In the 1960s, Dorothy started the Harlem Action Group, taught in the NY public schools and then initiated YouthBuild in 1978. The organization has since involved more than 100,000 young people throughout the US and has built more than 20,000 units. Dorothy has won numerous awards for her work, including a MacArthur “genius” Prize in 1996. And President Obama recently named her a “Champion of Change.” You can learn more about YouthBuild and about Dorothy at their web site: https://youthbuild.org/ .

7 p.m. at Michael & Naomi's home;  RSVP by email or at (412) 422-7515 .  Appetizers and beverages will be served.

Your faithful blogger Maren is among those looking forward to learning more at this session -- in addition to the lifelong connection with our next-door neighbor (and event host) Michael, the organization is based in Somerville, MA (where I spent a decade) and my sister also went to Bank Street.  My family has deep roots in education,  and this program also resonates with the Urban Farming Initiative that I helped start here in Pittsburgh, connecting disadvantaged urban youth with opportunities to grow food -- and in the process gaining job skills, understanding where food comes from, learning about nutrition, and getting active out in the fresh air doing something constructive.  All of these efforts are great community-builders!