Monthly Archives: January 2008

It’s almost time: Global warming teach-in and film screening at SCAD

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The Savannah College of Art and Design will host a Focus the Nation Teach-in Thursday, Jan. 31, 8 a.m.-5:30 p.m., at Trustees Theater, 216 E. Broughton St. The teach-in will gather SCAD students, faculty and community members for a full-day discussion of issues that address global warming and personal responsibility. The event is free and open to the public. SCAD is one of more than 1,750 institutions nationwide conducting such an event.

Organized by SCAD’s Council for Sustainability and Eco-practices, the teach in includes five hour-long discussion sessions, each featuring three speakers. Sessions are scheduled to begin at 8:15 a.m., 9:30 a.m., 11 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. A “Next Steps” brainstorming session begins at 3 p.m., where participants can provide input regarding actions to take locally and globally to affect change.

A sampling of session topics includes:11th.jpg

  • Why you should care about how a product is packaged
  • Community stewardship
  • Food choice and global warming
  • Local action in influencing climate change policy
  • The science of sustainability
  • Habits and choices in personal consumption

A screening of the 2007 film “The 11th Hour,” which discusses how the earth has reached a tipping point regarding global warming, will follow the teach-in at 6 p.m. The film is produced and narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio. The screening is free and open to the public, and is presented by the SCAD office of innovative teaching and learning.

Bottles, bags and today’s paper

bottles.jpgMary Landers’ story “Savannah taps into tap water,” in the Savannah Morning News reports that the City of Savannah is making an environmentally- and fiscally-prudent effort to limit the use of bottled water by city employees. Laura Walker, who is organizing the Savannah’s Earth Day festivities, is interviewed for the story. Why is the city giving bottles the boot? Here’s a snip:

Making bottles to meet Americans’ demand for bottled water requires more than 17 million barrels of oil annually, enough to fuel more than 1 million U.S. cars for a year, according to the Earth Policy Institute.

About 83 percent of plastic water bottles used in the U.S. become garbage or litter, according to the Container Recycling Institute.

Meanwhile in the exchange section, Landers localized an AP story called “Environmental concerns force grocers, bag makers to rethink the plastic bag,” with a sidebar, “Investor bets on canvas.” In it, she interviewed Peter Krull who offers his clients socially-responsible financial services and reusable canvas grocery bags:

“Here is a bag to get you started, if you haven’t already,” wrote Krull on a fact sheet he sent along with the bags. “You’ll no longer be faced with the paper or plastic dilemma at the grocery store.”

Congratulations to Walker, Krull and Landers for their good work.

Photo credit: Ian via Flickr.

New blog to focus on local transit issues

Savannah Transit is a recently launched blog that promises to focus on “alternative methods of transportation to the old American favorite: the automobile.” The “Why?” portion of the first post on the blog hits just about every benefit to be derived from enhanced transit options: congestion mitigation, poverty reduction, crime prevention, public health and — of course — the environmental angle. Here’s a snip:

Because offering options, as well as growing, supporting and maintaining those options, benefits our city, the people that live in it, and those that visit us. Because most alternatives are greener and can help make our city a better place to live in or visit.

Shannon, the blog’s creator, is asking for suggestions and ideas.

The week ahead

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The coming week seems particularly busy with events. Here’s what’s on the agenda:

Monday: Joint meeting of the Bryan and Chatham County Coastal Georgia Greenway committees

Tuesday: Project Green meeting and joint meeting of the McIntosh and Glynn Coastal Georgia Greenway committees

Thursday: Focus the National Global Warming Teach-in, screening of “The 11th Hour” and a Citizens for Clean Air and Water presentation.

Saturday: Cog bicycle co-op holds weekly hours.

Have I missed anything? Let me know.