Environmental Education - Rochester, NY area

RochesterEnvironment.com

Programs & information that inform the public on various aspects of our area's environment. Especially important now is educating oneself about Climate Change as all environmental issues will now be viewed through the lens of Climate Change. 

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Page Contents: NewsLinks | Climate Change & Education |Discussions | Institutions of Higher Learning in our area | Get Educated on our Environment | Useful Environmental Information | Local programs on our environment |Environmental Reading List | Media & Environment

An Environmental Education  

Most educational programs in our colleges and universities probably include some science courses, but probably not an environmental course as a general educational requirement. This, and an ethics requirement for business majors, is woefully lacking in an educational system trying to survive into today’s economic world.  Note: I didn’t say that our institutions were not aligning ourselves with other world-class educational curriculums to produce students who will be able to complete in today’s market.  We may or may not be cranking out über breadwinners.  That may not be clear until the financial dust settles around the world.  

Environmental EducationBut, whether or not you believe institutions of higher education exist for people to get high-paying jobs, fit into our society, know their cultures and others, or think well on their feet with a smart gadget in their hand, you must include graduates who can (and will) rationally assess the health of their environment.  In the September 2009 edition of Harpers MagazineDehumanized, When Math and Science Rule the School,” Mark Slouka makes the case that the humanities have suffered in our colleges as our country only focuses of what they think we need to compete.  In our strivings to compete, Slouka says, we are losing what is to best to be human.  I submit that we are also losing something more basic: the core of our existence.  For, whatever one’s beliefs or interests, we are among the billions of biological creatures on this planet that must have clean air, water, and land.   

In today’s world of 6.5 billion people a well educated person should have a firm grasp of our biological underpinnings.  It may not get you a job, a mate, popularity, or allow you to be a stunning dinner speaker, but it will allow you to intelligently sift through news, environmental studies, and reports of early signs that our environmental systems are shutting down—as many argue they are.  The climate is warming (despite crazy radio talk rhetoric) along with acidification of the oceans, the loss of biodiversity, and much more. A people who cannot tell (or don’t even pay attention) that things are not going well with the system that keeps them alive is a people on their way out.   

So, if you missed that day in college when your professor mentioned during a math or computer class that she wasn’t opening the windows that day because of an ozone alert, you might want to attend one of the many programs on the environment in our area this fall.  Check Environment Calendar | Rochester, NY | RochesterEnvironment.com .  There are a lot of good programs going on by non-profit groups, universities, and our local governments, including a lecture series to draw attention to important environmental topics by the town of Irondequoit.  

Of course, we cannot make up for decades of not putting environmental studies high on the agenda in our universities, nor demand that a sizeable (for that is what it will take) portion of humanity to take note of the vast unhealthy changes we’ve made in the last couple of centuries.  We are a ‘free’ people, in pursuit of Happiness, Liberty, and just trying to get by.  But Mother Nature is a demanding parent: Ignorance of her laws will have no effect on her rules.  One of these programs might help your reconnect with Her.

 

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Climate Change and Education

Increasingly, educating our children on Climate Change from the very first grades is recognized as critical in producing a society that understands all the implications of our warming world.

  • Toward a Climate & Energy Literate Society Understanding the causes of and responding to climate change is the major challenge of the 21st century. Most Americans do not understand the basics of climate change and energy or how they are inextricably connected, yet informed decisions, a prepared workforce, and risk reductions are not possiblewithout a clear understanding of these topics. Research shows that in general those who have a basic understanding of the science are more concerned with addressing climate change (Leiserowitz 2010, 2011, Miller 2012). Moreover, Improving society’s climate and energy literacy should be a top priority addressed through science education and through a range of other education, communication, and outreach strategies. --Prepared by the National Center for Science Education Mark McCaffrey, Minda Berbeco, PhD, & Eugenie Scott, PhD March 2013
  • Comfort Zone: A documentary exploring climate change in upstate New York” | Is climate change a scientific problem? An engineering problem? A psychological problem? All that, and more? COMFORT ZONE takes an in-depth look at what happens when global climate issues come to our backyards. The specific setting is Upstate New York, but the effects, both subtle and profound, illustrate the kinds of effects that can happen anywhere  We encourage you to screen the film with as many people as possible. Please contact us if you need help setting up or promoting a screening, or would like us to attend. Below are some tools and advice to help you have the most successful screening possible. You can also use this flyer to share information about the film with people who might want to collaborate on a screening.

 

 

Environmental Education Discussions

Join me on my blog "Environmental Thoughts" for these discussion on Environmental Education:

  • An Environmental Education Most educational programs in our colleges and universities probably include some science courses, but probably not an environmental course as a general educational requirement. This, and an ethics requirement for business majors, is woefully lacking in an educational system trying to survive into today’s economic world. Note: I didn’t say that our institutions were not aligning ourselves with other world-class educational curriculums to produce students who will be able to complete in today’s market. We may or may not be cranking out über breadwinners. That may not be clear until the financial dust settles around the world. more...
  • Critical Feedback Requested about our community: Critical Feedback Requested about our community: We here at RochesterEnvironment.com wish to remind you again of an important website that has been launched in our area. ACT Rochester has been a long time in the works and is modeled on other cities who have worked on this concept of provide communities of important indicator that will determine among other things Education, Environment, Technology, Transportation, Health, Public Safety, etc. This site is an on-going, long-term project to provide not only community groups and governmental bodies, but you the citizen who cares about your community, with critical data (not opinions and news, but expertly acquired data). more...
  • Environmental News, Wouldn’t It Be Nice? Wouldn’t it be nice if Rochester, like some other cities in the US had a separate section in their newspaper, or other media, for just Environmental News? The Toledo Blade has a section totally devoted to environmental stories and keeps them listed online for a long time. Doesn’t seem like a tall order, usually one good reporter devoted exclusively to an entire community’s environmental health would do. more...
  • Coyote Dread: Because the issue of the Eastern Coyotes among us has come up in the news, I wanted to make a reference to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation who reminds us the coyotes are an ‘integral part of our ecosystem.’  As we have exterminated most of the top predators in our area in the last couple of centuries (bears, wolves, cougars used to rule), we have a proliferation of deer and our environment has altered a lot.  My point is that when it comes to coyotes there are much misinformation and prejudice about this creature whirling about—sometimes resulting in coyote killing contests.  This is not how we should be reacting to ‘integral part of our ecosystem’ in this time.  We should be reacting as stewards of our environment, which we are now.  Coyote Conflicts - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation The Eastern coyote is firmly established in New York. They live in New York as an integral part of our ecosystem. People and coyotes can usually coexist if the natural fear of people that coyotes have is maintained.
  • We need more Environmental Studies One of RochesterEnvironment.com’s stated goals is “To increase independent and objective studies of our environment to find out the affect of industrial pollution, sprawl, invasive species and other assaults that would affect our environment.” –from About Rochester Environment.com. For we cannot possibly solve the question, is our species living sustainably? if we do not know what effects our human footprints are having on the planet. By footprints, I mean the effects of our industrial chemicals, the wholesale changes in our air, the paving over of our planet, etc. more...

 

Grassroots

Grassroots is a non-profit organization founded in 2000 by Patti and Doug Wood. Patti is an educator, author and environmental advocate, and serves as a Visiting Scholar at Adelphi University where she lectures on environmental health at the School of Nursing and in the Department of Chemistry. Doug is a composer, author and documentary filmmaker, former President of the Production Music Association and a member of the Board of Directors of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).

Media and our environment

One of the reasons why the public does not understand the size and scope of the environmental issues that face us, such as Climate Change, is the local and national coverage of our environment in the media.  This has to change and change quickly, so the public's information system includes their life support system.

  • The Project for Improved Environmental Coverage (PIEC) is a nonprofit initiative dedicated to improving environmental news coverage in the mainstream media. Improved environmental literacy has a range of societal benefits and we are committed to working in a collaborative manner to further this goal. One of our primary strategies has been the development of the Vision for Improved Environmental Coverage in collaboration with a range of key news media outlets and organizations. This Vision is designed to serve as a scaffold for innovation that defines the opportunity and outlines core principles for improved environmental coverage.

 

Envrionmentalsciencedegree.com is a comprehensive resource for those interested in working in the field or advancing their education. From salary information, career paths, and updates from the field, you’re sure to find answers to all your questions – and some you’d never think to ask. Our site provides a list of accredited programs at all academic levels in addition to helpful blog posts and other straightforward information to help our readers become and stay informed. If you’re not sure what degree is right for you, browse through our directory and discover the wide variety of programs both online and on-campus. Want to Reach Us? If you have a question about our site or simply have a suggestion or comment, please send us a note at the following address: info@environmentalsciencedegree.com.

 

Rochester area Institutions of higher learning

Rochester, NY area is unique in the number and quality of institutions on higher learning.  All 'get it' on our environment and many have specific programs on Environmental Education.  Some are developing programs that will help students get green jobs for the future.

 

Center for Environmental Initiatives (CEI) is working for environmental protection and enhanced quality of life in the Greater Rochester and Finger Lakes region through education, collaboration and informed action.

Get Educated on our Environment

Rochester is host to numerous programs that inform the public on our environment. Public program, environmental groups' programs, schools and universities, there are continual places in our area to get find out about our environment.

  • Education - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation To make the right environmental choices, we all need to understand how our natural environment works, and how resources are affected by the things we do. This is why state law directs DEC to provide environmental education programs that help every citizen to be a steward of the environment. --from New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
  • Campaign for Environmental Literacy The Campaign aims to help organize and mobilize the collective tools and assets of the EE community in order to secure federal support and encouragement for vibrant, integrated EE programs across the nation. Simply put, our goal is to significantly increase the amount of federal funding dedicated to the EE community. We are certain that this emphasis will be instrumental in closing the growing environmental literacy gap.
  • Cornell Cooperative Extension of Monroe County - Welcome... Cornell Cooperative Extension of Monroe County was recognized by the Youth Services Quality Council at their December 2007 Annual Breakfast, with the Organization Quality Award of the Year. CCE was given the award for their active involvement with the work of the Youth Services Quality Council and commitment to quality service for youth and families in our community.
  • Mapping Gateway - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation Conserving, improving, and protecting New York's natural resources and environment are inherently geographic endeavors. Whether it's studying the habitat of the endangered Karner Blue Butterfly or supporting the cleanup of a brownfield site, every program managed by the Department deals in some way with the space we live in. The DEC relies on geographic data or 'geodata' to enhance decision making and strengthen the public services we offer. We have an extensive collection of maps and geodata sets that the public can access on this page.
  • Discover the Hudson River" Booklet Now Available - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation New Resource For Teachers and Students Studying the Hudson New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Pete Grannis today announced the availability of a new environmental resource - Discover the Hudson River, a 16-page booklet designed for teachers and students in the upper elementary grades. (January 25, 2010) Press Releases - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation [more on Environmental Education in our area]
  • SUNY-ESF, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry "ESF offers 22 undergraduate and 30 graduate degree programs, including bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral (Ph.D.) programs in the sciences, engineering and forestry, and a nationally ranked program in landscape architecture. Associate degrees in environmental conservation, forest technology and land surveying are offered at ESF’s Ranger School in the Adirondacks. "

 

ACTRocheterACT Rochester - The mission of ACT Rochester is to stimulate community solutions to our most critical challenges by changing the culture of public discussion and debate.  This will be achieved through focused, independent and objective measurement of key community indicators, through diverse and timely dialogue and by promoting results-oriented actions.

 

Useful Environmental Information

  • NCSE | National Center for Science Education - Defending the Teaching of Evolution & Climate Science The National Center for Science Education (NCSE) is a not-for-profit, membership organization providing information and resources for schools, parents and concerned citizens working to keep evolution and climate science in public school science education. We educate the press and public about the scientific and educational aspects of controversies surrounding the teaching of evolution and climate change, and supply needed information and advice to defend good science education at local, state, and national levels. Our 4500 members are scientists, teachers, clergy, and citizens with diverse religious and political affiliations.
  • What is a State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR)? Why do you need one? Where do you get one? SEQR - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation "Environmental Impact Assessment in New York State In New York State, most projects or activities proposed by a state agency or unit of local government, and all discretionary approvals (permits) from a NYS agency or unit of local government, require an environmental impact assessment as prescribed by 6 NYCRR Part 617 State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR). [Statutory authority: Environmental Conservation Law Sections 3-0301(1)(b), 3-0301(2)(m) and 8-0113]. SEQR requires the sponsoring or approving governmental body to identify and mitigate the significant environmental impacts of the activity it is proposing or permitting. We standardized our environmental assessments by using the Environmental Assessment Form (EAF) and special guidance documents which you may download with instructions using the links on this page. "
  • Google Maps and Earth - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation "Some of DEC's map data can be viewed in Google Maps or Google Earth. To use Google Maps, simply click on any of the Google Maps icons below and the map will open an offsite link in your browser window. To use Google Earth, users must first download the software from Google (see link in right column under Offsite Links). Then, simply click on a Google Earth icon below to open or save the map (as a kmz file). Users new to Google Earth can also refer to DEC's tutorial (also in the right column). " --Learn more: DEC Expands Online Google Earth Offerings - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation Department's Hiking, Horseback Riding, Biking, Skiing, Snowmobile and Disabled Access Trails Now Available in Easy-to-Use Format Outdoor enthusiasts have a new tool to help plan the perfect trip to visit any of the 2,500 miles of recreational trails throughout New York, Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Pete Grannis announced today. DEC's Mapping Gateway has been expanded with information that enables the public to use Google Earth and other mapping tools to find trails and learn more about the state lands that surround them. (July 28, 2010) 
  • Thinking of a future that helps our environment?  Consider an Environmental Education with this new site that will help you decide where to go.  Type in you zip code, area of interest, level of degree, and online or offline (the real world) and get results:   Masters in Environmental Science Online Degree Programs "Complete Guide to Environmental Science Careers A degree program in environmental science covers topic areas such as environmental chemistry, biology, geology, climate change, pollution, conservation, ecology, and more. When you graduate with this type of degree, you have a number of career options, all working to understand the environment and work to solve environmental problems. This is a huge career area with workers needed to fill many different roles, and as more and more companies are compelled to take an active interest in the environment, demand for workers will only increase. We cover a wide range of topics all relating to environmental science. These topics include, but are not limited to, salary and job advancement opportunities, types of degree programs available, and online institutions offering accredited degrees in the field. "
  • GLOBE Program "The Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) program is a worldwide hands-on, primary and secondary school-based science and education program. GLOBE's vision promotes and supports students, teachers and scientists to collaborate on inquiry-based investigations of the environment and the Earth system working in close partnership with NASA, NOAA and NSF Earth System Science Projects (ESSP's) in study and research about the dynamics of Earth's environment. "
  • ConservationBridge "Bring real-world conservation projects into your classroom. ConservationBridge provides videos and resources about conservation concepts, case studies and cutting-edge research developed with academic leaders and conservation practitioners. "

 


Rochester, NY is famous for its great bicycling and walking along the Erie Canal. Photo by Frank J. Regan.











(Above scripts from Dynamic Drive)

Local programs on environmental education

Our region offers some unique opportunities to learn about our environment in various programs. 

  • CAYUGA LAKE FLOATING CLASSROOM "In collaboration with Tiohero Tours, we offer affordable programs for schools, community groups and residents of the Cayuga Lake Watershed and surrounding region.  Our experienced instructors can provide a range of safe, fun and engaging experiences. "
  • Friends of the Montezuma Wetlands Complex "The Montezuma Wetlands Complex (MWC) Project is an effort by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and Ducks Unlimited, Inc. to protect, restore and enhance wildlife habitat. It encompasses approximately 50,000 acres (20,242 hectares) in Seneca, Cayuga and Wayne counties in upstate New York and includes the federal Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge, the state Northern Montezuma Wildlife Management Area, and lands owned by conservation groups, farmers, and other private landowners. Public lands and some private land are managed to provide habitat for wildlife and recreation and education for people. "
  • Hobart and William Smith Colleges :: Finger Lakes Institute "Is dedicated to the promotion of environmental research and education about the Finger Lakes and surrounding environments. In collaboration with regional environmental partners and state and local government offices, the Institute fosters environmentally-sound development practices throughout the region, and disseminates the accumulated knowledge to the general public. "
  • Project Learning Tree "Mission PLT uses the forest as a "window" on the world to increase students' understanding of our environment; stimulate students' critical and creative thinking; develop students' ability to make informed decisions on environmental issues; and instill in students the commitment to take responsible action on behalf of the environment. Goals To develop students' awareness, appreciation, skills, and commitment to address environmental issues. To provide a framework for students to apply scientific processes and higher order thinking skills to resolve environmental problems. To help students acquire an appreciation and tolerance of diverse viewpoints on environmental issues and develop attitudes and actions based on analysis and evaluation of the available information. To encourage creativity, originality, and flexibility to resolve environmental problems and issues. To inspire and empower students to become responsible, productive, and participatory members of society. "

 

Open Climate Science 101 Open Climate Science 101 Three thousand non-science major undergraduates at the University of Chicago have taken this class since 1996, and learned the science behind the forecast for a human influence on Earth's climate. The story combines physics, chemistry, biology, and Earth and atmospheric science. The content of this class is now being served to the internet world at large. You can watch video lectures followed by quizzes to stimulate your understanding, and work your way through tutorial exercises letting you get hands-on with interactive models and simple mathematical ideas. You can work at your own pace, on your own time. You don't get University of Chicago credit, but it's free, and if you complete the exercises you can download a certificate of accomplishment signed by me. "Just wanted to say thank you for the great opportunity to be in your global warming class. The class lived up to all the great reviews that I received from my peers. I have always dreaded science classes but never felt too intimidated this quarter and my interest was consistently kept." -- student from Fall, 2011. 

 

Environmental Reading List Reports, articles, films, and more....

It is imperative that the public education themselves about Climate Change and how it will pertain to our area.  Below are major articles, books, and studies on what you need to know about our environment as it warms up. My comments are in Bold and in brackets.

Reports (all reports and studies on Climate Change are here)

Online courses

  • [Take a free online course on the basic physics of Climate Change:] Open Climate Science 101 "Three thousand non-science major undergraduates at the University of Chicago have taken this class since 1996, and learned the science behind the forecast for a human influence on Earth's climate. The story combines physics, chemistry, biology, and Earth and atmospheric science. The content of this class is now being served to the internet world at large. You can watch video lectures followed by quizzes to stimulate your understanding, and work your way through tutorial exercises letting you get hands-on with interactive models and simple mathematical ideas. You can work at your own pace, on your own time. You don't get University of Chicago credit, but it's free, and if you complete the exercises you can download a certificate of accomplishment signed by me. "

Books

  • [Read "Red Alert!: Saving the Planet with Indigenous Knowledge" Climate Change, if you’ve been paying attention to this worldwide crisis, is a bewilderingly complex issue where there are many knowns, known unknowns, and probably an infinite amount of unknown unknowns.  We don’t know how to get greenhouse gases down in any measure that will actually make a difference. We don’t know if many of our ecoregions are on the edge of collapse. We especially don’t know how the present state of our environment will fare in a warmer climate, an environment that is filled with manmade pollution and replete with a great loss of biodiversity.  This all matters because most climate studies and plan assume that our present environment is the only rational starting point from which to plan for a sustainable environment in the future.  Red Alert! reminds us that there are centuries of endemic peoples’ knowledge that can and should be tapped to create a more realistic baseline for climate studies.  Rather than assume that our present over-populated, over polluted, and other-than-human-species-impoverished world is the starting point for our climate studies, we should consider the vast knowledge gained from a people who understood what it meant to live sustainably long before it has become a crisis. To leave our American Indian knowledge out of our climate plans and studies is to attempt a sustainable future with more unknown unknowns than we can possibly imagine.  We should look to the peoples who know how a healthy environment actually worked before it was seriously disturbed. Daniel Wildcat paints a clear picture of what will be loss if modern Climate Change planners don’t include critical information gain by a people in touch with their environment.  Listen to Connections: Native American Approach To Climate Change ]
  • [Life of a Leaf” is critical reading if you’re thinking our life support system is worth sustaining.  My favorite sentence in The Life of a Leaf is this: “Leaves are really, really important.” Steven Vogel’s book is one of those books that should be required reading for all sentient beings on this planet. We see trees and leaves everywhere, but we don’t usually see what we need to see:  “For our earth the sun provides the source, and the sink is outer space or, in immediate terms, the cold sky. What’s the coupling system? One system exceeds in importance by some factor all others put together. It’s photosynthesis, as done by green plants, algae, and some kinds of bacteria. Without photosynthesis (or some substitute), nothing like the present kind of complex, highly ordered life could exist.”  You cannot really plan for a sustainable future if you don’t understand one of the basic features of our life support system and this book does so in a friendly, wise, and even sometimes humorous way. So yeah, this book is really, really important.] 
  • [One of my reasons for reading this book was to find a model in the real world when a pending catastrophe looms over Americans, where they trust their engineers and politicians, where that fails, where the press keeps ignoring a major threat, and the public is lulled into thinking everything is OK until it isn’t and then when disaster happens it become obvious that the private section cannot cope with a major disaster and the federal government has to step in.  I found this book to be an interesting example to the Climate Change problem  in the sense that when we ignore environmental issues and stuff happens the default is for Big Government to come to the rescue, as they are the insures of last resort.] Rising Tide: The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 and How it Changed America by John M. Barry "An American epic of science, politics, race, honor, high society, and the Mississippi River, Rising Tide tells the riveting and nearly forgotten story of the greatest natural disaster this country has ever known -- the Mississippi flood of 1927. The river inundated the homes of nearly one million people, helped elect Huey Long governor and made Herbert Hoover president, drove hundreds of thousands of blacks north, and transformed American society and politics forever.  A New York Times Notable Book of the Year, winner of the Southern Book Critics Circle Award and the Lillian Smith Award. " Amazon.com
  • [Humanity should get a better perspective on Climate Change rather than just an economic, political, and even scientific vantage. Climate Change changes everything and we need to get our heads around this fundamental change of existence. Convention philosophy has dropped the ball on Climate Change but  a new look by serious philosophers are getting an important perspective on this world-wide, existential crisis.  Read this excellent book and rethink Climate Change.] Climate Change and Philosophy: Transformational Possibilities (Continuum Studies in Philosophy) Ruth Irwin, 2010 "Climate Change and Philosophy presents ten original essays by an international team of expert contributors, exploring the important contribution philosophical inquiry can make to contemporary debates to do with climate change and the global environment. Examining this hugely topical issue through the lens of environmental philosophy, political theory, philosophy of technology, philosophy of education and feminist theory, these essays interrogate some of the presumptions that inform modernity and our interaction with natural processes. The book asks fundamental questions about human nature and, more importantly, the concept of ‘nature' itself. The conceptual frameworks presented here contribute to an understanding of the processes of change, of social transformation, and the means of adapting to the constraints that problems such as climate change pose. The book proposes a way of beginning the important task of rethinking the relationship between humanity and the natural environment. Through enquiry into the basic philosophical principles that inform modern society, each author asserts that reflection informs change and that change is both required and possible in the context of the environmental crisis facing us today "
  • [Al Gore’s new book gives a perspective on Climate Change and the other drivers of major changes coming from a perspective that few could achieve because of this position as Vice-President for eight years—and more.  I recommend that everyone read this comprehensive view of what Climate Change will look like as Gore anticipates many of the consequences of Climate Change, including our probable responses to it. What puzzles me about this book is that in interviews Gore explains how he is optimistic about stopping global warming, but I’m not feeling all that optimistic after reading it. ] The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change "From the former vice president and #1 New York Times bestselling author comes An Inconvenient Truth for everything—a frank and clear-eyed assessment of six critical drivers of global change in the decades to come. Ours is a time of revolutionary change that has no precedent in history. With the same passion he brought to the challenge of climate change, and with his decades of experience on the front lines of global policy, Al Gore surveys our planet’s beclouded horizon and offers a sober, learned, and ultimately hopeful forecast in the visionary tradition of Alvin Toffler’s Future Shock and John Naisbitt’s Megatrends. In The Future, Gore identifies the emerging forces that are reshaping our world: "
  • [Excellent read about future weather predictions by an expert. You really need to read a book about Climate Change from climatologist’s point of view—and why that’s different from a meteorologist’s point of view. ] The Weather of the Future: Heat Waves, Extreme Storms, and Other Scenes From a Climate-Changed Planet (ISBN 978-0-06-172688-0) is a 2010 book by climatologistHeidi Cullen. Cullen takes as her starting point the "clear and present dangers" posed by the greenhouse gases which result from the burning fossil fuels.[1] She offers a vision of what life might be like in a warmer world climate. Cullen predicts "more frequent and more violent storms, more hot spells, cold spells, droughts, famines and huge waves of desperate refugees" --from Wikipedai
  • [Water, fresh drinking water, is the most valuable natural resource we have and we haven’t treated it very well.  Find out how some of the places that have endured a lack of water are now teaching us how best to protect and preserve water.  Find out how industry has learned more about water in their business and how that knowledge can help the world monitor its water use.] The Big Thirst: The Secret Life and Turbulent Future of Water Charles Fishman 
  • [Reading this very readable book on what climate science predicts for global warming.  Really inexpensive read, if you get the Kindle edition.] The Weather of the Future: Heat Waves, Extreme Storms, and Other Scenes from a Climate-Changed Planet
  • [Just finished this short 99 cents E-book on Germany’s renewable energy transformation.  A must read for all Americans who’d like to have a sensible energy system that we almost had with President Carter but got sidetracked by big oil. ] "Clean Break: The Story of Germany's Energy Transformation and What Americans Can Learn from It "The European Union's biggest and most powerful industrial economy is making a clean break from coal, oil and nuclear energy. It is doing something most Americans would say is impossible, but already Germany is running on 25% clean energy and it is on track to reach 80 percent by 2050. Some experts say it could reach 100 percent by then. But Germany's energiewende, or energy transformation, is really a very American story that revolves around self-reliant individuals in a responsive democracy forging a national can-do vision.  "  from - Inside Climate News
  • [Free book on Climate Change that you can download or read online.  This book gets at the equality issue behind the Climate Change facts.} Climate, Development and Equity "Climate change already affects all of us, but those most vulnerable to its impacts have done the least to cause the problem. Unless radical cuts in emissions take place soon, the world is set for dangerous climate change, with all of humanity at peril. This Volume presents voices from across the North and South, addressing the combined challenges of climate, development and equity. It highlights the urgency of taking action, but also shows why any attempt to tackle climate change must be grounded in equity. How will humanity fairly divide the rapidly diminishing global carbon budget, while allowing billions of people in the global South (and North) the means for economic, social and environmental well-being? How can United Nations negotiations move forward, and what are the real and false solutions? " -from The Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation
  • [This book is an excellent source for understanding the problem and consequences of plastic pollution in our environment, especially in the oceans.  This is a problem that cannot be ignored and it must be solved while we solve Climate Change. ] Plastic Ocean "A third generation resident of Long Beach, California, Captain Charles Moore grew up in and on the Pacific Ocean. His father was an industrial chemist and avid sailor who took young Charles and his siblings sailing to remote destinations from Guadalupe Island to Hawaii. Charles attended the University of California at San Diego where he studied chemistry and Spanish. After 25 years running a woodworking and finishing business, Charles founded Algalita Marine Research Foundation in 1994. In 1995 he launched his purpose-designed, aluminum-hulled research vessel, Alguita, in Hobart, Tasmania, and helped organize the Australian Government's first "Coastcare" research voyage to document anthropogenic (human-caused) contamination of Australia's east coast. Upon his return to California, he became a coordinator of the State Water Resources Control Board's Volunteer Water Monitoring Steering Committee and developed chemical and bacterial monitoring methods for the Surfrider Foundation's "Blue Water Task Force." As a member of the Southern California Coastal Water Research Project's Bight '98 steering committee, he realized the need for and provided a research vessel so that Mexican researchers from Baja California could participate for the first time in assessing the entire Southern California Bight along the coastline from Point Conception to San Diego "
  • [Free book on Climate Change that you can download or read online.  This book gets at the equality issue behind the Climate Change facts.} Climate, Development and Equity "Climate change already affects all of us, but those most vulnerable to its impacts have done the least to cause the problem. Unless radical cuts in emissions take place soon, the world is set for dangerous climate change, with all of humanity at peril. This Volume presents voices from across the North and South, addressing the combined challenges of climate, development and equity. It highlights the urgency of taking action, but also shows why any attempt to tackle climate change must be grounded in equity. How will humanity fairly divide the rapidly diminishing global carbon budget, while allowing billions of people in the global South (and North) the means for economic, social and environmental well-being? How can United Nations negotiations move forward, and what are the real and false solutions? " -from The Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation
  • [Find out how some scientists will join with industry to sow doubt on Climate Change and other issues  to protect at any cost the free market system.]  Merchants of Doubt "troubling story of how a cadre of influential scientists have clouded public understanding of scientific facts to advance a political and economic agenda. The U.S. scientific community has long led the world in research on public health, environmental science, and other issues affecting the quality of life. Our scientists have produced landmark studies on the dangers of DDT, tobacco smoke, acid rain, and global warming. But at the same time, a small yet potent subset of this community leads the world in vehement denial of these dangers. "
  • [Excellent history of New York State's environment showing how our state has a speical relationship to protecting our environment.] The Nature of New York: An Environmental History of the Empire State by  David Stradling
  • [Learn how it oftentimes takes an environmental tragedy to establish sensible environmental practices in our country] The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America Timothy Egan 
  • {Find out how truly transformative the man-made changes to our environment during the 20th century really were.  The amount and kind and speed of changes were unprecedented in the history of life on this planet. } Something New Under the Sun: An Environmental History of the Twentieth-Century World  by J. R. McNeill 
  • [Get a sense of the abundance and variety of plant and wildlife in North American before the arrival of the Europeans, only some five hundred years ago.  The changes mankind brought to our region in what is almost an instant of time is breathtaking.  This book helps give you a sense of time from which the repercussions of our environmental disturbances must be viewed.  Because of the shifting baseline syndrome, we often miss the proper time span in which to make environmental decisions.] 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus  by  Charles C. Mann  -Wikipedia

Articles

  • [Here's an article with a long list of resources to read and watch on our environment]: Reading List for Course on Science and Environmental Communication | Climate Shift "This semester, students from a diversity of majors at American University are participating in an advanced seminar I am teaching on science and environmental communication. For the first part of the semester, we are covering core issues and themes. In the process, students will be blogging on related selected topics while finalizing their research paper topic. " (February 10, 2012) Climate Shift |

Film

  • [Just watched Symphony of the Soil.  I learned lots about one of the most important life support system components—besides water and air. I thought the first part of this documentary was critical in getting a sense of what soil is and what it is composed of.  Soil, except for food production, rarely gets mentioned in studies, articles, and documents on Climate Change. The knee-jerk response by those who say that we cannot possibly feed the populations of the world with organic farming hijacks the entire discussion about the need to have healthy soil as we go further into Climate Change. Food production on a planet moving towards 9 billion folks by 2050 is critical, but it tends to blind us to the need for soil that does a lot more than grow crops—probably some biological ecological functions by some unknown creatures in the soil we barely understand.  My favorite quote in the documentary is that watching soil through a microscope is like watching Times Square on New Year’s Eve. Pausing on this quote for a moment gives one a sense of the infinite complexity of a substance that covers this planet, a substance we have mistreated badly without hardly as clue as to what it is. Soil, the discovery of all that it does, should be a critical part of all Climate Change discussions. This reminds me of an old joke: The dentist tells his patient that his teeth are fine but the gums have to come out.  ‘Soil’ is the gums. If we are able to feed 9 billion folks in 2050 but we have trashed the soil with toxins and GMO’s in the process, our way of life and those in it will no longer be sustainable.] Symphony of the Soil "Drawing from ancient knowledge and cutting edge science, Symphony of the Soil is an artistic exploration of the miraculous substance soil. By understanding the elaborate relationships and mutuality between soil, water, the atmosphere, plants and animals, we come to appreciate the complex and dynamic nature of this precious resource. The film also examines our human relationship with soil, the use and misuse of soil in agriculture, deforestation and development, and the latest scientific research on soil’s key role in ameliorating the most challenging environmental issues of our time. Filmed on four continents, featuring esteemed scientists and working farmers and ranchers, Symphony of the Soil is an intriguing presentation that highlights possibilities of healthy soil creating healthy plants creating healthy humans living on a healthy planet. "
  • [This new documentary about the effects of our throw-away lifestyle is very unsettling and crucial to understanding of the buildup of our trash around the world.  This should be in the face of everyone who buys something so that we understand the magnitude of this waster problem.  Some communities offering solutions are shown also. ]Trashed "In the new docu-feature TRASHED, a Blenheim Films production, produced and directed by British filmmaker Candida Brady (Madam and the Dying Swan), which was selected to receive a Special Screening at the Cannes Film Festival, Irons sets out to discover the extent and effects of the global waste problem, as he travels around the world to beautiful destinations tainted by pollution. This is a meticulous, brave investigative journey that takes Irons (and us) from scepticism to sorrow and from horror to hope. Brady's narrative is vividly propelled by an original score created by Academy Award winning composer Vangelis. "
  • [Home, the movie by artist-activist Yann Arthus-Bertrand, is quite an amazing film about our home, Earth: how we have radically compromised its health in a very short time, and how we have to fix it quickly as our planet warms from Climate Change. You can watch the entire film at no charge on YouTube (as a gift to the public) here, though I recommend getting a hold of the Blu-ray version because the photography and music are incredible.] Home "In the past 200,000 years, humans have upset the balance of planet Earth, a balance established by nearly four billion years of evolution. We must act now. It is too late to be a pessimist. The price is too high. Humanity has little time to reverse the trend and change its patterns of consumption. Through visually stunning footage from over fifty countries, all shot from an aerial perspective, Yann Arthus–Bertrand shows us a view most of us have never seen. He shares with us his sense of awe about our planet and his concern for its health. With this film, Arthus-Bertrand hopes to provide a stepping-stone to further the call to action to take care of our HOME. HOME is the first film that has been made using aerial-only footage. The film marks artist-activist Yann Arthus-Bertrand’s feature film directorial debut. HOME the movie is carbon offset. All of the CO2 emissions engendered by the making of the film are calculated and offset by sums of money that are used to provide clean energy to those who do not have any. For the last ten years, all the work of Yann Arthus-Bertrand has been carbon offset. "
  • Chasing Ice "ABOUT THE FILM Chasing Ice is the story of one man’s mission to change the tide of history by gathering undeniable evidence of climate change. Using time-lapse cameras, his videos compress years into seconds and capture ancient mountains of ice in motion as they disappear at a breathtaking rate. "
  • Why are Americans so unlikely to believe that Climate Change, which is physics, is occurring? Check out this video from the experts that gets to the heart of this matter. --from NSF.gov - To What Degree? - What Science Is Telling Us About Climate Change - How Do We Know?
  • In the United States an individual’s partisan affiliation is the most important determinant of their views on the existence of global warming, with Democrats significantly more likely than Republicans to believe that the Earth is warming” Climate Compared: Public Opinion on Climate Change in the United States & Canada February 2011
  • Strange Days on Planet Earth Around the globe, experts are racing to solve a series of mysteries: how could a one-degree rise in average temperature have profound effects around the globe? How could crumbling houses in New Orleans be linked to voracious creatures from southern China? Hosted by actor-writer-director Edward Norton, this award-winning series uses state-of-the-art graphics and globe-spanning investigations to understand how our environment is changing and why?  by National Geographic
  • BIDDER 70 "centers on an extraordinary, ingenious and effective act of civil disobedience demanding government and industry accountability. In 2008, University of Utah economics student Tim DeChristopher committed an act which would redefine patriotism in our time, igniting a spirit of civil disobedience in the name of climate justice. "

TV

  • Years of Living Dangerously "This groundbreaking documentary event series explores the human impact of climate change. From the damage wrought by Hurricane Sandy to the upheaval caused by drought in the Middle East, YEARS OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY combines the blockbuster storytelling styles of top Hollywood movie makers with the reporting expertise of Hollywood's brightest stars and today's most respected journalists." Showtime