Category: Events

Webinar: Green Economy in the Black Community

Wed, Feb 24, 2021 6-7 pm CST
Register here.

Throughout the month of February, the Illinois Chapter of the Sierra Club is celebrating Black History Month. This is an annual celebration that both reminds us of contributions and recognizes the achievements of Black people across all areas of life. For us, we are lifting up environmental champions.

African Americans have advanced every aspect of the environment including agriculture, water, energy, and environmental justice policies. We acknowledge the historical contributions of Illinois leaders from the Black community and also turn our attention to living innovators who are transforming lives and communities through legislation, business ownership, and relevant research.

In celebration of these history makers, we invite you to join us for a panel discussion entitled “Green Economy in the Black Community.” The panel will be moderated by Dr. Kim DeLaney, Director of Education and Programs at the DuSable Museum of African American History and will bring to light the intersections between environmentalism and green entrepreneurship in the Black community.

Join us for this timely discussion on the historical shifts to cleaner and greener businesses here in Illinois.

Webinar: EPA Tools & Resources Webinar: PITT Findings on PFAS Destruction Technologies

Feb 17, 2021, 2-3 pm CST
Register here.

The presence of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in the environment is one of the most pressing environmental issues facing our nation. PFAS chemicals have been manufactured and widely used around the globe, including in the United States since the 1940s, to make plastics, firefighting foams and lubricants, and to help make products stain-resistant, waterproof and nonstick. The unique chemical characteristics of PFAS lead to their persistence in the environment and make their complete destruction extremely difficult. 

EPA has been aggressively working to find solutions to address PFAS issues in communities across the nation, including establishment of EPA’s PFAS Innovative Treatment Team (PITT) in spring 2020. The PITT was a six-month, dedicated full-time team of multi-disciplined EPA researchers brought together to concentrate their scientific efforts on exploring disposal and destruction options for PFAS-contaminated waste. During the PITT’s operation, the team worked together to:

  • Assess current and emerging PFAS destruction technologies being explored by EPA, universities, other research organizations and industry.
  • Explore the efficacy of these PFAS destruction technologies, including consideration of potentially hazardous byproducts.
  • Evaluate the feasibility, performance and cost of various PFAS destruction methods to better understand potential solutions.

This presentation will highlight the results of the PITT’s research and next steps for PFAS waste treatment technologies.

PFAS Webinar

Feb 19, 2021, noon
Register here.

PFAS is a family of chemical compounds (over 4,000) found in most everything we use in our daily lives. These forever chemicals have been identified as emerging contaminants and have found their way into some of our water systems.

The development of treatment technologies that can reliably, sustainably, and cost effectively remove PFAS from water and maximize the use of our water resources is a critical short-term step.

This Southern California Water Coalition program will explore PFAS, what it is, how we can treat the existing conditions and explore long-term solutions that replace these chemicals to ensure the protection of future generations’ access to water today and for tomorrow.


  • Robert Beste, Assistant General Manager, Water Replenishment District of Southern California
  • Steven Carmona, City Manager, City of Pico Rivera, California
  • Jason Dadakis, Executive Director, Water Quality and Technical Resources, Orange County Water District
  • Scott Grieco, P.E., Ph.D., Global Technology Leader, Jacobs
  • Craig Miller, General Manager, Western Municipal Water District
  • Dan Newton, California State Water Resource Control Board’s Division of Drinking Water
  • Steve Tedesco, Senior Vice President, Tetra Tech

Tennessee Sustainable Spirits Webinar: Sustainability and Community Engagement

Feb 22, 2021, 1:30-2:30 pm CST
Register here.


  • Mark Valencia – TDEC: Environmental Scientist
  • Anthony Davis –  East Nashville Beer Works: President
  • Kelly Tipler – TN State Parks Conservancy: Executive Director       

The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation – Office of Policy and Sustainable Practices (OPSP) invites you to the Tennessee Sustainable Spirits’ first webinar of the year. This webinar will discuss how spirits producers can address sustainability and community engagement. Attendees will learn more about how spirits producers can engage with the community in a way that educates or encourages sustainability.

The TN State Parks Conservancy has partnered with Tennessee Brew Works to develop a beer made with 100% local ingredients. A portion of proceeds from beer sales goes to the conservancy. Kelly Tipler from the TN State Park Conservancy will be discussing ways producers can partner with non-profit community organizations. East Nashville Beer Works is a brewery designed around the concept of community. Anthony Davis will discuss how East Nashville Beer Works engages with the community and how others can do the same.

Webinar series: Building Sustainable Futures: Global Challenges and Possibilities

Northwestern Buffett’s “Building Sustainable Futures: Global Challenges and Possibilities” webinar series spotlights current events and efforts to reach United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), with a focus on a different UN SDG each quarter.

Find recordings from past events and links for upcoming webcasts here.

Webinar: Tools for Safer Chemicals—from Chemicals to Products to Organizations

Feb 25, 2021 noon-1 pm CST
Register here.

Abstract: Demand for inherently safer chemicals in products and manufacturing operations is on the rise. Consumers, institutional purchasers, and retailers want products made with safer chemicals. Brands are requiring suppliers to avoid hazardous chemicals and use safer alternatives. Investors prefer companies that commit to reducing their chemical footprint. And governments are restricting the use of hazardous chemicals in products.

This session will explore tools for:

  • Identifying chemicals of concern and safer chemicals.
  • Identifying products made with safer chemicals.
  • Creating organizational capacity to move ahead of regulatory compliance in chemicals management.

The tool we will use for identifying safer chemicals and products is GreenScreen and the tool we will use for creating greater organization capacity is the Chemical Footprint Project Survey.

Biography: Mark S. Rossi, PhD, Executive Director, Clean Production Action (CPA). Mark has the unique ability to bring together diverse groups and achieve innovative outcomes. He is the co-creator of GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals, a globally-recognized chemical hazard assessment method used by governments and businesses in the electronics, apparel, and building sectors to identify safer alternatives to toxic chemicals. In 2017, Mark led CPA’s launch of GreenScreen Certified™, a certification program for products that meet rigorous GreenScreen criteria.

Mark is the co-founder of the Chemical Footprint Project (CFP), a first-of-its-kind initiative to quantitatively measure chemical footprints, and allow manufacturers and retailers to benchmark and communicate their progress in chemicals management performance and in reducing potentially hazardous chemicals relative to industry peers. Investors, retailers, health care organizations, and NGOs use CFP to engage manufacturers in assessing, reporting, and reducing their chemical footprints.

He is the founder of BizNGO, a collaborative of businesses, NGOs, and governments that work together to create solutions for safer chemicals and sustainable materials. BizNGO products include the Chemical Alternatives Assessment ProtocolPlastics Scorecard, and Alternatives to Methylene Chloride in Paint and Varnish Strippers.

In 2018, Mark led the integration of the Investor Environmental Health Network (IEHN) into CPA upon the retirement of IEHN’s co-founder Dr. Richard Liroff. IEHN is a collaborative of investors that promotes safer chemicals in corporations with the goals of enhancing the health of people and planet, as well as shareholder value.

Part of the CPA team since 2004, Mark played a variety of roles in the organization, including Research Director and Co-Director, before becoming Executive Director in 2016. He is a member of the Massachusetts Toxics Use Reduction Act Advisory Committee; and recipient of the Environmental Merit Award from the US EPA Region I and National Pollution Prevention Roundtable Ambassador Award. Mark’s doctorate is in Environmental Policy from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

This seminar is a certified green event by the University of Illinois’ University of Illinois’ Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment.

WEbinar: Beneficial Re-use of Industrial CO2 Emissions Using Microalgae

Feb 11, 2021 noon-1pm CST
Register here.

Abstract: Carbon dioxide utilization through algal biomass production has undergone extensive research, mainly focusing on the replacement of traditional petroleum fuels. However, achieving economic viability for algae-based fuels has proven difficult due to their low value and comparatively high production costs. Consequently, the algae industry is experiencing a shift in focus from fuels towards more valuable products, including nutraceuticals, specialty chemicals and human food additives. Unfortunately, these higher value products tend to have very limited markets, which have the potential to saturate when scaling algae production facilities to multi-acre scales. Bioplastics derived from algal biomass offer a potential means of solving these problems. Algae-based bioplastics represent a drop-in replacement for many everyday products, including flexible foams, synthetic fibers, food packaging films and even 3-D printing filament. As proteins are the most desirable component of the algal biomass in bioplastic production, fuel production methods based on lipid extraction can in principal be employed to improve the bioplastic quality (and thus value) while producing a useful fuel co-product.

This seminar will summarize our work, initiated in 2009, aimed at algae cultivation using flue gas from coal-fired power plants as the CO2 source. The results of techno-economic and life cycle analyses will also be presented, conducted to assess the economic viability and environmental impact of an algae biorefinery that integrates the complementary functions of bioplastic feedstock and fuel production.

Biography: Mark Crocker received BSc. and Ph.D. degrees in chemistry from the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom, and spent two years as a NATO Research Fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Thereafter he spent 15 years working in industry, first for Shell Research in Amsterdam and then for Degussa’s automotive catalyst division in Michigan, USA. In 2003 he moved to the University of Kentucky (UK) where he is currently a Professor in the Department of Chemistry and an Associate Director of the Center for Applied Energy Research. At UK he leads a research group focusing on CO2 recycling using microalgae, biofuels and environmental catalysis.

This seminar is a certified green event by the University of Illinois’ University of Illinois’ Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment.

2021 Summer Study on Energy Efficiency in Industry

July 13 – 15, 2021
MGM Grand Hotel, Detroit, Michigan
More information

Our 14th biennial conference will offer a provocative and dynamic discussion of industry on the brink of transformation. With industry accounting for more than one-fourth of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, its decarbonization is more important than ever, and energy efficiency is a critical path forward. Reducing industrial emissions will not only help address climate change but also create clean energy jobs, protect public health, and ensure market competitiveness.

Join us as we explore an exciting mix of topics on low-carbon industrial products, processes, and policies. These issues will include: smart energy management, manufacturing, electrification, supply chains, the U.S. auto industry, Big Data, emerging technologies, workforce development, onsite energy generation, grid of the future, low-carbon fuels, and carbon capture, utilization, and storage.

We welcome your participation and collaboration in shaping ACEEE’s Industrial Decarbonization Initiative. We want to work together to develop and implement a plan to advance industrial energy efficiency and to build a clean energy future.

  • Panel 1: Agile Manufacturing and Supply Chains
  • Panel 2: Electrification and Low Carbon Fuels
  • Panel 3: Energy, Materials, and Resource Efficiency
  • Panel 4: Policies and Programs for Innovation

Webinar: SciStarter, Citizen Science, and How You Can Help!

Jan 27, 2021, 2-3 pm CST
Register here.

Learn about how you can make a difference in the world of scientific research. Citizen science is an effort that enables people from all walks of life to do just that through volunteering to contribute data to or analyze data for global research projects.

Using the SciStarter website, you can find projects that match your interests and explore the world of science and nature while helping our scientific community. Do it on your timetable, whenever you can, wherever you can. Spend as much or as little time as you want. Citizen science is fun on your own, in groups, and even with your grandchildren!

On Wednesday, January 27th at 3pm ET, SciStarter Program Manager Caroline Nickerson will host a Zoom webinar in partnership with 4 Seasons, a community in New Jersey, to introduce citizen science. Anyone, anywhere in the world is welcome to attend.

The featured projects for the webinar include Stall Catchers (, Nature’s Notebook (, and The Great Sunflower Project (

The founder of SciStarter, Darlene Cavalier, is a professor at Arizona State University. She is also the daughter-in-law of 4 Seasons residents Bonnie and Ron Cavalier.

Webinar: Citizen Science Month in Your Library or Community-Based Organization

Jan 22, 2021, 1-2 pm CST
Register here.

Citizen Science Month (April 2021) is a great time to bring citizen science — public engagement in real scientific research — to your library or community-based organization (CBO). Join this webinar to learn about Citizen Science Month ( featured projects and resources showcased by SciStarter, Arizona State University, the Network of the National Library of Medicine, the All of Us Research program, and other champions of Citizen Science Month.

See also: The Library & Community Guide to Citizen Science

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