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World Environment Day

green_cities.jpgWorld Environment Day -- which actually lasts 5 days -- takes place in San Francisco this year, and kicks off tomorrow. Established by the UN in 1972, World Environment Day is an education festival, with lectures, product exhibits and artwork all meant to make visitors aware of the ways in which the environment can be improved. The theme this year? As seen to the right, "Green Cities."

The schedule for the five days covers topics near and dear to the hearts of WorldChangers:

  • June 1: "Pure Elements" -- Food, water and air.
  • June 2: "Redesigning the Metropolis" -- Recycling, green building and smart growth.
  • June 3: "Cities on the Move" -- Transportation.
  • June 4: "Urban Power" -- Energy, renewables and energy conservation.
  • June 5: "Flower Power" -- Open space, biodiversity and greening the urban environment.

    (The site has a page letting you browse each day's activities, and a PDF showing all of the events.)

    The events are free, and most can be attended on a drop-in basis (although some, like Thursday's presentation by WorldChanging allies Gil Friend and Joel Makower, The Sustainable Business Phenomenon: Leading Initiatives in Redefining Business, do ask that you sign up). Most of Wednesday's events are at Fort Mason, while the remaining days are largely at the Metreon center.

    But here's the deal: the conference is set up so that all of each day's workshops run simultaneously -- if you attend Gil and Joel's talk on Thursday, for example, you won't be able to see Partners Planning for Sustainable Cities, Innovative Recycling Programs, or Smart Growth in San Francisco: Designing Cities for People and the Environment. Undoubtedly this is intended to keep each of the workshops to a reasonable size, and it will probably be possible to wander between them, but this is precisely the kind of situation that calls for smart mobbing.

    So, are you going to the event? If so, we'd love to have you share your observations about the workshops you saw in the comments below. Even if you can't make it to San Francisco, you can still help out by alerting us to other sites blogging the conference. There are bound to be a bunch of worldchanging ideas presented these next few days -- together we can make sure everyone has a chance to hear them.

  • Comments (5)

    Tawn Kennedy:

    young and young at heart,

    join us at the WED Youth Track and its premire event:

    **The International Youth-Student Forum for a Sustainable Future**

    June 5, 2005
    Berkeley, CA

    To unite youth and their commitment to the world's future, the Youth Sector of the US Partnership for the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014) has coordinated and supported a special Youth Track at World Environment Day.

    Youth organizations, universities, businesses, and non-profits from around North America and the world are coming together to lead over 30 events and to support youth participation. Additionally, the Youth Track will culminate on June 5th in a premier youth forum. The International Youth-Student Forum, hosted by the California Student Sustainability Coalition,** will offer the premier opportunity for diverse youth and student interests to rally around common goals of a sustainable global lifestyle and an ethical, accountable, and integral course for future development. The Forum will provide a space for youth, students, and their allies from around the planet, to come together and create a united vision of how to support each other in the sustainability movement.

    The forum will take place at the beautiful International House, University of California at Berkeley, 2299 Piedmont Ave. Berkeley CA 94720. 8AM Breakfast. Event from 9AM-6PM. Food will be provided.

    To register or inquire about this event, please contact the hosts:
    wedforuminfo@yahoo.com 1-866-248-7673 ext 2302 / (831) 345-9443 (cell)

    For more information on World Environment Day or the WED Youth Track, please go to the following website and browse "youth": http://www.wed2005.org/programs-listing.php

    ** The California Student Sustainability Coalition is a coalition of sustainability and environmental organizations at the University of California campuses, state campuses and some community colleges, which facilitate collaboration between all constituencies involved in ensuring a sustainable future at our universities.

    Wandering between them will be challenging, since the events are all over town. My dilemma for Thursday, for example: Environmentally Preferable Purchasing, 12-430p, Presidio; our Sustainable Business workshop. 230-430p, downtown; Green Jobs & Urban Economies, 5-7p, Fort Mason; Ecological Footprint, 6-9p downtown; all too far to wander. So it goes.

    PS: I made the PM part of Green City Visions today, which included a couple of gems. I hope to blog them soon.

    It has been an exhausting week. There were times when I wanted to attend 5 events that occured at the same exact time, and other times when little piqued my interest. As the sponsor or producer of 6 different events for this World Environment Day, I took great pains to schedule my events to work WITH other ones, but there were no systems in place to do this.

    Overall it has been an incredible week. Another reminder of why I live here in San Francisco.


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