Earth Week Edition and You’re Invited to an Organizing Training in Maryland
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A bimonthly newsletter on campus happenings, research, and civic engagement

RCC President Speaks at High Point University’s Earth Week Kickoff

On April 16, to kick off Earth Week at HPU, Robert K. Musil, PhD, MPH President and CEO of the Rachel Carson Council, spoke about North Carolina and the environment. Read more.

Dominican College Joins Campus Network
In his keynote address to Dominican, on the one year anniversary of the 2017 March for Science,  RCC President Bob Musil spoke on “Last Chance for the Environment? Why Scientists and Citizens Must Act.” Musil explained that our understanding of the world around us depends not only on increasing scientific understanding, but also on brave and bold scientists, like Rachel Carson, a woman who challenged mainstream science and corporate assurances that pesticide use was safe for both wildlife and humans. Read more.

You’re Invited: Organizing 101 at Salisbury University, Maryland, May 4, 2018.

This RCC-sponsored training on May 4, 2018 from 9:30am-12:30pm will cover Midwest organizing techniques, power mapping, holding elected officials accountable and more! RSVP for details and location to

RCC President to Deliver “Can We Still Save the Environment” Earth Week Address
at Webster University

Webster University welcomes Robert K. Musil to campus in April as the Woodrow Wilson Foundation Visiting Fellow. Among the events while he is on campus will be a public talk in the "Contemporary Conversations for a Connected World" series hosted by President Beth Stroble: "Rachel Carson's Legacy: Can We Still Save the Environment?" will take place at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 25. Read more and listen to Charlie Brennan Show interview here.

Tufts Global Development and Environment Institute Co-Director William R. Moomaw on Forest Bioenergy and the Future of Wetlands

Nations have launched into action to fight climate change after ratifying the 2015 Paris Agreement. To reach their climate goals, many countries have increased their renewable energy targets, and allowed burning wood from forests to count as “renewable energy.” This policy brief presents the arguments for and against forest bioenergy. Read more about bioenergy and wetlands here.

Duke Delays Plans for CHP Plant,
Focuses on Biogas Options

Duke University has delayed indefinitely plans to build a freestanding combined-heat-and-power (CHP) plant and will instead focus its attention on expanding opportunities to use biogas and other environmentally friendly fuels for its growing energy needs, university officials announced on April 6. Read more and watch a recording of a recent community forum here.

Environmental Action Coalition UNC Student
Hosts Speaker Series

The series addressed environmental, social justice, and policy aspects of industrial agriculture and included Will Hendrick of Waterkeeper Alliance, Naeema Muhammad of North Carolina Environmental Justice Network, Elizabeth Haddix, a Civil Rights and Environmental Attorney, and David Price, US Representative.

Thanks to Mackenzie Dion for helping to organize this series.

UC Berkeley: From Pollution Cleanup to Building Houses, What Can’t Mushrooms Do?

There are more than 5 million species of fungi, and each one likes a particular food. Some like sawdust. Others like plastic. Some can even digest heavy metals. After the fungi eat their meal, what was once waste turns into a new, natural and compostable material that can just be left to decompose or be used in all sorts of practical ways, from cleaning up oil spills to fashioning faux leather handbags to building houses. Sonia Travaglini, a Ph.D. candidate in mechanical engineering at UC Berkeley, tells us all about it. Learn more.

Saint Mary’s College of Maryland Authors Report on Effects of Nutrient and Stormwater Reduction in the Chesapeake Bay

Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies Cassie Gurbisz was among 14 co-authors of a new research article published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The article reports the positive impact of long-term nutrient reductions on an important and valuable ecosystem in the Chesapeake Bay. Scientists indicate the resurgence of underwater grasses supports nutrient reductions from EPA’s Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL). This, along with conservation incentives, has resulted in a healthier Chesapeake Bay. Learn more.

Wake Forest Sustainability Hosts“Working for the World We Want” Series

The Office of Sustainability will be hosting our annual Earth Week celebration March 18-24. This week-long celebration will focus on environmental (in)justice, with a focal community lecture by Majora Carter. Other events will include the annual Champions of Change campus sustainability awards program, a campus beautification service project, and student-curated public art experiences. Read more here

A Pig Issue: 18-minute Video Exploring Environmental Injustice in North Carolina

When you picture a farm, what do you see? Many of us might imagine a bucolic country setting with animals grazing peacefully in the fresh air on a pastoral hillside. And while that’s a lovely image, it’s nothing more than fantasy for those living in and around modern factory farms. Today, most animals raised for food in the U.S. are the unfortunate victims of business practices that put profits ahead of animal treatment, the environment, local communities, and human health. Read more.

Berkeley Offers its Fastest Growing Course —
Data Science — Online, For Free

The fastest-growing course in UC Berkeley’s history — Foundations of Data Science — is being offered free online this spring for the first time through the campus’s online education hub, edX. Data science is becoming important to more and more people because the world is increasingly data-driven — and not just science and tech but the humanities, business and government. Read more.

More resources:

●      Policy brief: A Critical Look at Bioenergy, Tufts University

April 25-27: National Environmental Justice Conference and Training Program

Leaders from various sectors will engage in 3 days of free exchange of ideas and approaches to achieving environmental justice. These interactive training sessions will feature voices of experience, research, discussions, and thought-provoking dialogue. The program format will feature the needs and challenges of communities, governments, municipalities, tribes, faith-based organizations, and others with an interest in environmental justice. It will highlight programs and collaborations that work, as well as initiatives that have not proven successful. Program speakers will feature representatives from Federal and state agencies, local governments, tribes, community groups, business and industry, public interest groups, academia, and other entities.

• • •

May 12: Symposium on Environmental Justice and Health Disparities in Maryland and the Washington, DC Region

The 4th Community Engagement, Environmental Justice, and Health (CEEJH) 2018 Environmental Justice and Health Disparities Symposium will convene numerous regional legislators, nonprofit organizations, and researchers for an in-depth examination of environmental justice and health disparities issues affecting our region. Registration is free, and includes lunch. Register now!

Thanks to Dr. Sacoby Wilson for bringing this to our attention.

• • •

Justice First Tour Starts in North Carolina and Heads to Nine Other StatesThe southeastern region of the United States had more polluting facilities than anywhere in the United States of America. It’s one of the poorest regions in the United States and suffers the greatest number climate- and weather- related impacts in the country. The south is also the last funded region by philanthropic organizations in the country. Nonetheless, some of the most successful and impactful work around issues are being performed daily in the South. Learn more.

• • •

June 25-26: Tribal Environmental Health Summit 2018, Oregon State University

The theme of the 3rd Tribal Environmental Health Summit is Sustaining Long Term Partnerships and Projects with Native American Communities. Sponsorship provided by the Oregon State University College of Public Health and Human Sciences, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the Native Environmental Health Research Network. Read more.

The Rachel Carson College at University of California - Santa Cruz is hosting several exciting events, culminating in the unveiling of a bust of Rachel Carson! Other events include educational experiences around coffee production, positive effects of gardening, conservation crafting, and a screening of Merchants of Doubt. Read more
The University of Maryland at Baltimore County is hosting its “EcoFest” including a kickoff with crafts, a service project involving gardening, a Zero Waste discussion, a campus stream cleanup, and campus-wide GreenFest with live entertainment. Learn more.
Earth Week at University of California at Berkeley is organized by the Earth Week Planning Committee, consisting of representatives from the Student Environmental Resource Center (SERC) and Environmental & Sustainability Student Organizations, as well as support from campus and community partners. The week will include a conference and art display; an event called “Honoring Womxn in Food Systems,” discussions on carbon neutrality and climate justice, and a screening of Wasted. Read more.
To kick off Earth Week 2018 at Johns Hopkins University, Sustainable Hopkins Innovative Projects will hold a town hall for the student-driven and led Sustainability Coalition. The Sustainability Coalition Inaugural Town Hall Event will be a gathering of students interested in environmental sustainability and Coalition Members, where students will have a platform to discuss and come up with solutions to current critical environmental challenges. Other events will include happy hours, a “fix it fair,” DIY terrariums, and a hospital lunch and learn. Learn more.
Earlier this month, University of Michigan hosted Sandra Steingraber and Director Chandra Chevannes for the Michigan debut of Unfractured, a documentary film about the grassroots campaign that got fracking banned in the state of New York. Other events included a service day, photography exhibit, Act4Earth political activism event, and Run4Earth jog. Read more.
Over the years we at RCC have been devoted to providing you the public with important, timely information about the environment. RCC exists because of donations from individuals like you.
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