Issues in sustainability science are increasingly being addressed using “big data” and data analytics.  Data rich modeling techniques can assist in improving systems thinking to integrate business operations, people, ecosystems and climate. The result can be improved decision making, greener supply chains and optimization of business operations — all leading to increased corporate profits and important social benefits.  The ultimate goal of big data science is to foster economic development, improve social livelihoods, and enhance environmental quality.
Join SSF and leaders from Chatmine Technologies and Boston University in a free webinar demonstrating the application of computational modelling of natural and social processes to identify patterns, trends, and associations that can inform sustainability decision making. The webinar will be organized around five case studies focused on integrating multi-scale and multi-source data and applying spatial statistical techniques, artificial Intelligence algorithms, and systems modeling to derive business insights and strategies.  The presentations will be appropriate for a non-technical audience and include:
  • Behavioral Correlations: Are hybrid or electric car drivers more likely to solarize their roofs? This project explores behavior and attitudinal data of some consumers in Massachusetts.
  • Analyzing Flood Risk: Flood insurance is increasingly important for residential and commercial property owners. Flood risk is still mapped using USGS 100 year flood maps. These maps have to be completely updated and revised using new satellite data that can be analyzed to provide better risk probability profiles based on International panel on Climate Change (IPCC) models. This example reports on work for a commercial insurance company.
  • Forensic Environmental Investigations Using Neural Networks: Urban sustainability includes protecting urban trees and forests. Panelists applied unsupervised neural networks to examine the impact of natural gas leaks caused by aging infrastructure that resulted in tree mortality in Boston
  • Predicting Malaria Hot Spots: Increasing temperatures in the highland regions of East Shoa in Ethiopia have led to increased incidence of malaria. Spatial statistical analysis, shown in this example, predicted the clusters or hot spots of malaria.
  • Municipal Resilience Snapshots: Designing and implementing sustainability metrics for a neighborhood or town can provide a quick snapshot of its current or future social and natural resiliency, as illustrated in this example.
Meet the Panel
 
 GIS, data mining and information visualization and artificial neural networks
Suchi Gopal
Suchi Gopal, PhD is a professor at Boston University; her research interest is multidisciplinary dealing with spatial analysis and modeling, GIS, data mining and information visualization and artificial neural networks. She has applied spatial analysis to address a variety of problems in biology, environmental science, public health, and business. Suchi is currently working on urban sustainability issues. She is also the CEO of Chatmine Technologies that specializes in big data analysis and business insights for industry, business and government clients, including the healthcare, technology, packaging, and financial sectors.
 
Josh Pitts
Joshua Pitts is a data scientist and software engineer, with a focus on integration of unique data sets to model complex systems. Recent work includes GIS-based environmental/climate modeling and visualization for the MacArthur Foundation, Conservation International, and the National Park Service. Josh also serves as CTO of Chatmine Technologies, where he manages the big data analytical program.
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Fri, Sep 29, 2017 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM EDT

REGISTER – http://bit.ly/2fc7P6S

While individual and organizational commitments to sustainability are growing, there is not enough civic engagement for green energy policy. Fossil fuel companies and some utilities are damaging the environment and our shared future through advocating for bad energy policies. In this webinar, we share non-partisan materials that any person or organization can easily use to help produce better green energy policies. Move beyond doom and gloom or skepticism to engage in a clean energy future and help produce a healthier economy, environment, and society.

Debra Rowe is a well-known national and international leader in education and action for sustainability. She is President of the U.S. Partnership for Education for Sustainable Development. The U.S. Partnership convenes leaders within business, education, governmental, faith and youth sectors and catalyzes national sustainability initiatives. Debra has taught Campus Sustainability and Corporate Sustainability for the University of Vermont. She has also been a professor and practitioner of energy management and renewable energies for over 35 years, and is the recipient of numerous awards, including an international energy education award at MIT.

The session will be moderated by Security and Sustainability Forum Managing Director, Edward Saltzberg.

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Webinar: Drawdown – 60 Minutes with Paul Hawken

by Arturo Herrera on August 3, 2017

Wed, Oct 4, 2017 1:15 PM – 2:15 PM EDT

Register at http://bit.ly/2hrgbZ1

Project Drawdown is facilitating a broad coalition of researchers, scientists, graduate students, PhDs, post-docs, policy makers, business leaders and activists to assemble and present the best available information on climate solutions in order to describe their beneficial financial, social and environmental impact over the next thirty years.
The book, Drawdown, reports on this research to map, measure, model, and describe the 100 most substantive solutions to global warming.  It is the first detailed plan to reverse global warming
Drawdown hit #9 on the  NYT bestseller in its first week, stayed on the best seller list for four weeks, and is in its 4th printing. It was the first book on the environment or climate to attain that ranking in over 25 years.
For each solution, Drawdown describes its history, the carbon impact it provides, the relative cost and savings, the path to adoption, and how it works. The goal of the research that informs Drawdown is to determine if we can reverse the buildup of atmospheric carbon within thirty years. All solutions modeled are already in place, well understood, analyzed based on peer-reviewed science, and are expanding around the world.
 
Join Security and Sustainability Forum Managing Director, Edward Saltzberg, and American Renewable Energy Institute  Chairman and CEO, Chip Comins, in a 60 minute webinar and conversation with Drawdown Editor and Project Drawdown Executive Director, Paul Hawken.
Paul Hawken

Paul Hawken is an author and activist. He has founded successful, ecologically-conscious businesses, and consulted with heads of state and CEOs on economic development, industrial ecology, and environmental policy. He has written seven books including four national bestsellers: The Next Economy, Growing a Business, and The Ecology of Commerce, andBlessed Unrest. The Ecology of Commerce was voted as the #1 college text on business and the environment by professors in 67 business schools.Natural Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution, co-authored with Amory Lovins, has been referred to by several heads of state including President Bill Clinton who called it one of the most important books in the world at that time. He has served on the board of many environmental organizations including Center for Plant Conservation, Shelburne Farms, Trust for Public Land, Conservation International, and National Audubon Society .

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We present another Closing the Environmental Literacy Gap webinar in collaboration with the World Watch Institute and Island Press. This webinar features contributors to WWI’s latest State of the World publication, “EarthEd – Rethinking Education on a Changing Planet“.
 
EarthEd addresses applying a systems approach to environmental learning at all levels of development, from preschool to professional. Its guidance can inform teachers, policy makers, school administrators, community leaders, parents and students alike.  Its vision will inspire anyone who wants to prepare students not only for the storms ahead, but to become the next generation of sustainability leaders.
 
We also produced and archived two earlier webinars in the series.
Through the Closing the Environmental Literacy Gap seriesThe Security and Sustainability Forum is aligned with other leading climate education organizations in emphasizing the need to accelerate systems thinking in education with the goals of training a climate-ready workforce, raising awareness of the impacts of climate change, understanding the interrelationships within and between natural and social systems, and exploring appropriate responses at the national, regional and local levels.  Democracy depends on an informed citizenry and climate literacy will become increasingly important as climate impacts accelerate.
MEET THE PANEL
Erik Assadourian is a senior fellow at the Worldwatch Institute and is directing State of the World 2017: EarthEd: Rethinking Education on a Changing Planet. He is author of the introductory chapter and the final chapter, “The Future of Education: A Glimpse from 2030.”  Erik studies cultural change, consumerism, degrowth, ecological ethics, corporate responsibility, religion, and sustainable communities over the past 15 years.
Josslyn Trivett
Joslyn Rose Trivett manages environmental education and outreach for the Sustainability in Prisons Project. Her expertise in human development, anti-bias, and sociology have fed her inclusive, productive approach to environmental learning and action. She partners with incarcerated students and technicians, corrections staff, academics, and many partner organizations to create innovative, solutions-based programs
Melissa Nelson

Melissa K. Nelson, Ph.D., (Anishinaabe/Métis [Turtle Mountain Chippewa]) is an ecologist, writer, and indigenous scholar-activist. She is an associate professor of American Indian Studies at San Francisco State University and President of the Cultural Conservancy, an indigenous rights organization, which she has directed since 1993. Her first edited anthology Original Instructions – Indigenous Teachings For A Sustainable Future (2008), features three of her essays and focuses on the persistence of Traditional Ecological Knowledge by contemporary native communities.

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Systems thinking and a sustainability framework can serve to effectively guide investment in natural, built, cyber, and social infrastructure.  The trifecta of science, business and education working together, presents an opportunity for infrastructure to be built, rebuilt, maintained or upgraded to meet standards of sustainability.
Innovation in all fields of natural sciences, engineering, computing, social sciences, and education working with business and government offers great potential to apply systems thinking to maximize co-benefits and meet society’s resilience needs.
Join SSF and the National Council for Science and the Environment in an important discussion on systems thinking applied to the built environment and the status of university sustainability educational programs to prepare the workforce of the future. The webinar is a lead up to the 2018 NCSE National Conference and Global Forum on Science, Policy, and the Environment and will include a report out from the  NCSE Census Report on Sustainability Programs in Higher Education in the United States Today .

PANEL

Moderator: Michelle Wyman is the Executive Director of the National Council for Science and the Environment (NCSE). Michelle has worked on energy and environmental policy for over 20 years domestically and internationally. Her work includes developing and executing strategies that engage science, higher education and policy at all levels of government to accelerate advances in strong environmental policies and actions informed by science.

 

Speakers Include:

Shirley Vincent is the Director of environmental and sustainability education research programs for the National Council for Science and the Environment (NCSE). Dr. Vincent is a frequent author and speaker on interdisciplinary and sustainability education topics. She is an advisor to a number of universities on their sustainability education programs and has advised the National Science Foundation Advisory Committee on Environmental Education and Research.

 

Dr. Peter Walker is a professor and since 2014 serves as the Dean of the Falk School of Sustainability & Environment, Chatham University. One of the earliest schools of its kind in the country, the Falk School is a wellspring for leadership and education to overcome current and future sustainability challenges. Previously, Dr. Walker spent twelve years as the Director of the Feinstein International Center at Tufts University in Boston and 15 years on international disaster response around the Golberg.

 

Zach Schafer is Executive Director of Infrastructure Week, the nation’s largest infrastructure education and advocacy coalition. Infrastructure Week challenges elected officials, business and labor leaders, and citizens to move beyond short-term fixes and deferred maintenance, and to deploy the innovative technologies, policies, and investments that will bring America’s infrastructure into the 21st century. Mr. Schafer has more than 10 years’ experience in the sustainability, climate, energy, and infrastructure sectors, across the Obama Administration, the private sector, and academia.

 

Tom Richard is a Professor of Agricultural and Biological Engineering and Director of Penn State Institutes for Energy and the Environment. Dr. Richard’s Bioconversion Research Group applies fundamental engineering science to microbial ecosystems, developing innovative strategies for a more sustainable agriculture and the emerging bio-based economy.

 

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Global Atlas of Marine Fisheries – What is happening with marine life?

June 22, 2017

Until now, there has been only one source of data on global fishery catches: information reported to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations by member countries. An extensive, ten-year study conducted by The Sea Around Us Project of the University of British Columbia shows that this catch data is fundamentally misleading. Many […]

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Webinar: Cities on the Leading Edge of Resilience

June 14, 2017

The private sector and all levels of government are embracing resilience as a holistic, proactive framework to reduce risk, improve services, adapt to changing conditions, and empower citizens. Recent high profile programs, such as the $1 billion National Disaster Resilience Competition initiated by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Rockefeller Foundation’s […]

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We’ll Always Have Paris: Trump’s Impact on the Climate Agreement

June 5, 2017

Steven Cohen, Contributor Executive Director, Columbia University’s Earth Institute  — Last week I anticipated President Trump’s shortsighted decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord and predicted that his actions might provide environmentalists with a common enemy to rally against. That seems to be happening. Former NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg is organizing American corporations, states, cities and […]

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Going Green Without Going Into the Red : Solar Hot Water Systems

June 2, 2017
Thumbnail image for Going Green Without Going Into the Red : Solar Hot Water Systems

SSF is starting a new webinar series to feature green energy and environmentally friendly technologies with big potential benefits. The purpose of Going Green Without Going Into the Red is to learn about green technology applications and provide developers an opportunity to feature their innovations. The format for Going Green Without Going Into the Red will be […]

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Teaching Systems Thinking to Fill the Climate Literacy Gap

May 12, 2017

What will it take to produce a workforce that understands the relationships between environmental, social, and business factors so we can better address the risks of climate change in the coming years? A number of interrelating systems comprise each factor so incorporating systems thinking into the public and private educational systems should result in graduates […]

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