Webinar series: Using Citizen Science in Higher Education

The Citizen Science Association is hosting a series of events to support educators using citizen science in higher education. These events are designed to help you as you think about creating online or face-to-face learning experiences for undergraduates and connect you to a community of others doing the same. Each event is hosted by university faculty from around the country with experience using citizen science in a variety of disciplines.

Register for these free events using the links below-connection details shared via email after registration. Details and presenter bios on the CSA web site.

“Using Citizen Science in Higher Education” Roundtable
– Mon, May 11 at 3pm EST- REGISTER HERE

“Citizen Science in Online Learning Environments” Virtual Happy Hour
– Friday, May 15 at 3pm EST- REGISTER HERE

“How to Select a Citizen Science Project for Use with Undergraduates” Virtual Happy Hour
– Friday, May 22 at 3pm EST- REGISTER HERE

Assessing Student Participation in Citizen Science” Virtual Happy Hour
– Friday, June 5 at 3pm EST- REGISTER HERE

“Using Citizen Science in Non-STEM Courses” Virtual Happy Hour
– Friday, June 12 at 3pm EST- REGISTER HERE

*all events are held at 3pm EST, 12pm PST

Webinar: While No One Was Watching: Changing environmental regulations under the Trump Administration

May 14, 2020 noon, CDT
Register here.

The Earth Institute of Columbia University and the Society of Environmental Journalists invite you to join us for an important webinar for journalists. During more than three years in office, President Trump has attempted to undo dozens of environmental regulations. That effort has taken on a new dimension during the pandemic. In a move that environmental groups call reckless, the Administration has ordered a stop to enforcement of many of its environmental and health protections. Join us for a discussion of what has happened, and what it means.

Children’s Healthy Learning Environments Grant Initiative RFA June 2020

Deadline: June 1, 2020
Download the full RFA.

The purpose of the Children’s Healthy Learning Environments Grant Initiative is to provide capacity building to address children’s environmental health in school and childcare settings. The Children’s Healthy Learning Environments Grant Initiative provides funding directly to organizations to support school- and/or childcare center-based capacity building projects that help school communities understand and address local environmental and public health issues that affect children.

As produce rots in the field, one Florida farmer and an army of volunteers combat ‘a feeling of helplessness’ — one cucumber at a time

Read the full story in the Washington Post.

Hank Scott believes the bright green rows of ripening cucumbers are the best yield on his land since his father started the farm in 1963.

During any other spring, he’d oversee an army of workers harvesting cucumbers and shipping truckloads to pickling companies along the East Coast. But the coronavirus pandemic has closed or crippled the businesses where his produce would end up.

So instead, Scott, 64, invited volunteer pickers with the Society of St. Andrew, a Christian hunger relief organization, to glean as much produce as they could and donate it to nearby food banks. Anything green they left behind will likely be plowed back into the ground, feeding no one and adding to the farm’s ballooning losses.

“Between them not being able to make a profit off it and us not being able to take the surplus, there’s just a feeling of helplessness,” said Kathleen Bean, who volunteered to pick with her husband and son at Long & Scott Farms about an hour’s drive northwest of Orlando. After filling trucks and vans, more than two-thirds of the cucumber field remained untouched.

Scott and the volunteer cucumber pickers were trying to bring some sense to what has emerged as one of the most perverse outcomes of the pandemic: farmers forced to destroy fields full of crops while a growing number of families can’t afford enough food.

On one end are produce growers who supply restaurants, canning companies and theme parks that have been closed for weeks. Meanwhile, increasing unemployment and a convulsing economy have sent many families to the foodlines. In the most agonizing instances, hungry mouths are just a few miles from rotting crops, separated by economic turmoil and ruptured supply chains.

As the gleaners rescue vegetable after vegetable, they are both a final lifeline for desperate families and a sign of just how badly the novel coronavirus has kneecapped the systems that are supposed to keep everyone fed.

Bioplastics developer raises $133 million in new funding in quest to replace single-use plastics

Read the full story at CNBC.

Biotech company RWDC Industries announced on Tuesday that it raised $133 million in a two-stage Series B funding round.

The Singapore-based company, which also has operations in Athens, Georgia, makes a sustainable material solution that can be used as a substitute for plastic across a wide array of products, including straws and fast-food containers. The company uses renewable sources like used cooking oil for its feedstock, and its product is entirely biodegradable.

West Coast study: Recycling zeal doesn’t erase contamination

Read the full story in Resource Recycling.

According to a study from The Recycling Partnership, large and mid-sized cities in California see an average contamination rate of around 20%, a finding that underscores the complications of aligning enthusiastic residents with local-program realities.

Rising carbon dioxide causes more than a climate crisis — it may directly harm our ability to think

Read the full story from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

New research finds that an anticipated rise in carbon dioxide concentrations in our indoor living and working spaces by the year 2100 could lead to impaired human cognition.

Going viral: how to boost the spread of coronavirus science on social media

Read the full story from Nature. Good advice here for #scicomm generally, particularly for hot topics.

Scientists have a responsibility to communicate effectively and compassionately, says Samantha Yammine. Here’s how.

Keeping Food on the Table in a Pandemic

Read the full story from the Natural Resources Defense Council.

As the COVID19 crisis reverberates through our society, our food system is stressed. Grocery store clerks, food delivery workers, small and mid-sized farmers, people experiencing food insecurity, and farmworkers living and working in crowded conditions are experiencing and witnessing some of the harshest economic and societal effects of this pandemic. The food system, from farm to fridge, is in the crosshairs of the COVID crisis. Now, more than ever, we need to ensure that it is as strong and well-functioning as possible, and that the most vulnerable in our food chain are adequately supported.

Two Investment Firms Launch Funds Aimed at Tackling Climate and Sustainability Challenges

Read the full story at Environment & Energy Leader.

Two investment firms have recently launched separate funds aimed at tackling global climate and sustainability issues.