Giving Voice to Youth Leadership While Discovering Practical Solutions to Long-Term Climate Change[06/08/2014]

Guests:

  • Lynne Cherry, Director, Young Voices on Climate Change, Producer/Director,  Young Voices for the Planet Film Series, and Author and Illustrator of The Great Kapok  Tree  (In Studio);
  • Felix Maximilian Finkbeiner, German Youth Leader, Plant-for-the-Planet  Founder, Germany, and Plant-for-the-Planet Foundation Council Member, Germany, (By Skype)*;
  • Jordan Howard, California Youth Leader and Graduate “Green Ambassador” Program at Environmental Charter High School, Lawndale, California and Founder, “Jordan Inspires” (By Skype)*
  •  Madeline Carroll Cowen and Larissa Horwich Weinstein, Florida Youth Leaders, Dream in Green”, George Washington Carver Middle School and Coral Gables High School,   Coral Gables, Florida (By Skype)*; and
  • With Special Guest Lynne Cherry, Director, Young Voices on Climate Change, Producer/Director, Young Voices for the Planet Film Series, and Author and Illustrator of The Great  Kapok Tree  (Skype Back-Up) (In Studio)
 1  2
 1  2

Program Summary:

The EmeraldPlanet weekly television programs are broadcast and distributed via Channel 10 TV in Fairfax, Virginia USA. The programs are being simulcast to 2095 stations around the United States and then overseas by the Internet and C-SPAN television.  The EmeraldPlanet programs are currently available in all countries and 214 territories around the world.  The Emerald Trek and companion The Emerald Mini-Treks are identifying the 1,000 “best practices” on location from the 143 nations, 750 cities, and 50,000 communities by Internet TV, local television stations, main stream media outlets, YouTube, Facebook, The EmeraldPlanet Meetup, Twitter, among other social media networks, and all manner of print media.

The EmeraldPlanet TV is broadcasting weekly a number of the “best practices which are identified through collaboration with:  major non-governmental organizations (NGOs); United Nations, universities and colleges; research institutes; government ministries and agencies; Embassies; banking and micro-lending organizations; Chambers of Commerce; World Trade Centers, international bodies such as The World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), Inter-American Development Bank, African Development Bank Group, Asian Development Bank, UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization), citizens groups; multimedia organizations; among others by utilizing the most advanced broadcasting hardware and software along with an outstanding television Production Crew to reach an ever expanding global audience. The Emerald Trek is focused upon linking principals identified among the 1,000 ‘best practices’ in the 144 nations being visited through this world-wide movement. The Emerald Trek is encompassing over 300,000 miles, visiting 750 major cities, and 50,000 suburban and rural communities in the identified nations.

Our outstanding youth environmental leaders with the Special Guest Leader of Young Voices for the Planet are:

  • Segment ‘1’:  Lynne Cherry, Director, Young Voices on Climate Change, Producer/Director,  Young Voices for the Planet Film Series, and Author and Illustrator of The Great Kapok  Tree  (In Studio);
  • Segment ‘2’:  Felix Maximilian Finkbeiner, German Youth Leader, Plant-for-the-Planet  Founder, Germany, and Plant-for-the-Planet Foundation Council Member, Germany, (By Skype)*;
  • Segment ‘3’: Jordan Howard, California Youth Leader and Graduate “Green Ambassador” Program at Environmental Charter High School, Lawndale, California and Founder, “Jordan Inspires” (By Skype)*;
  • Segment ‘4’:  Madeline Carroll Cowen and Larissa Horwich Weinstein, Florida Youth Leaders, Dream in Green”, George Washington Carver Middle School and Coral Gables High School,   Coral Gables, Florida (By Skype)*; and
  • With Special Guest Lynne Cherry, Director, Young Voices on Climate Change,          Producer/Director, Young Voices for the Planet Film Series, and Author and Illustrator of The Great  Kapok Tree  (Skype Back-Up) (In Studio)

 

Lynne Cherry is the founder of the non-profit organization Young Voices on Climate Change, producer/director of the Young Voices for the Planet film series, children’s book author and illustrator, and a lecturer on climate change messaging and environmental issues. Lynne has written and/or illustrated 30 award-winning children’s books, many of them appearing on Reading Rainbow, including the best-sellers The Great Kapok Tree and A River Ran Wild.

As a filmmaker, Lynne has produced and directed 10 short films in the Young Voices for the Planet film series that have been licensed by National Geographic, PBS, the United Nations Foundation, National Wildlife Federation and many other institutions. These films document the positive and empowering stories about youth in the U.S. and abroad who have taken action to limit carbon dioxide emissions, increase energy efficiency, and ultimately limit the impact of climate change in their schools and communities. The films are used in many university education programs since they focus on how climate solutions and can overcome the inclination of people to avoid hearing climate change science.  Lynne has spoken at such institutions as NASA and the Woods Hole Research Center about the importance of hopeful messages in motivating people to take action on climate change. She wrote about “motivated avoidance” in a New York Times blog, dot.Earth, as guest editor for Andrew Revkin.

Lynne has received a Bachelors of Art from the Tyler School of Art and a Masters in History at Yale University. She has held Artist-in-Residencies at Princeton University, the Smithsonian Institution, NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Cornell University, and science-writing fellowships from the Marine Biological Lab and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. She is the Winner of a “Metcalf Fellowship” and the “Brandwein Prize”. Lynne’s adult writings include magazine articles, a chapter in Written in Water published by National Geographic books, and a chapter entitled Kids Can Save Forests in the scholarly book on rainforest canopy science Treetops At Risk edited by Dr. Margaret Lowman and published by Springer.

Felix Finkbeiner is the founder of the international children’s initiative Plant-for-the-Planet and a former European member of the Tunza Junior Board of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP). Currently, he is a Council Member of the Plant-for-the-Planet Foundation.

In 2007, Felix launched Plant-for-the-Planet, an international children’s initiative, which promotes climate justice by planting millions of trees around the world. Beginning with the vision that children could plant one million trees in every country in the world to balance carbon emissions, Plant-for-the-Planet has since evolved into a global movement. Felix and his team organize academies (one-day workshops) at which children learn the tools and knowledge they need to excel as ambassadors for climate justice and to empower other children, as well as adults, to raise awareness of the need for sustainability. Plant-for-the-Planet has appointed more than 27,000 Climate Justice Ambassadors so far and aims to increase that number to one million by 2020. The movement understands its role as being an initiative of world citizens who are committed to climate justice in the sense of achieving an overall reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and a unified distribution of these emissions among all of humankind.

Plant-for-the-Planet has had democratic structure since March 2011. It has two elected Global Boards, one for the children aged 8-14, and one for the youth aged 15-21; each consists of 14 children with representatives from 8 world regions. Since the children took over responsibility for the Billion Tree Campaign from UNEP in 2011, the children have set themselves a new goal of planting 1,000 billion trees worldwide by 2020. With such a giant CO2 storage facility, 10 billion tons of CO2 could be offset, buying us valuable time to permanently reduce our CO2 emissions (one tree can bind, on average, 10 kg of CO2 per year). If every global citizen plants 150 trees by 2020, then this goal will be met. The current tree-count can be followed on the Plant-for-the-Planet website, via our tree-o-meter: http://www.plant-for-the-planet-billiontreecampaign.org/. So far about 13 billion trees have been planted across 193 countries.

The worldwide communication campaign of the student initiative operates under the slogan “Stop talking. Start planting.” and in 2010 was honored with a gold award in the social national/international category at the Effie awards for efficient communication. On behalf of Plant-for-the-Planet, Felix has traveled the world to spread the message of the Initiative: “Stop talking. Start planting.” He has held speeches at the European Parliament (2008), the UNEP Tunza Children and Youth Conference (2009), and the United Nations General Assembly (2011). For his work with Plant-for-the-Planet, Felix has received several prestigious awards, including the Bavarian State Medal for Environmental Merits and 21st Century Superhero (awarded by Global Tolerance and the UNESCO).

Jordan Howard is a 21-year-old thought leader at the intersection of sustainability, environmental education and youth empowerment. As one of the youngest sustainability educators and green school champions, Jordan understands education is empowerment and has made it her mission to provide youth with the inspiration and tools to create the change they want to see in their schools, communities, and cities. Jordan’s journey began with her participation in an environmental service learning class through the Green Ambassadors Institute at the Environmental Charter High School in Los Angeles, California. Jordan was an environmental skeptic until she later realized that she was skeptical because she was not educated on solutions to environmental issues.

Once enlightened with sustainable solutions, Jordan immediately began transforming her home, high school, and peers across the globe. Jordan has partnered with various organizations across the nation with a focus to educate youth on issues centered on plastic pollution, environmental literacy, health & wellness, climate change, and environmental justice.

The Green Ambassadors Institute is a learning lab project of Environmental Charter Schools offering professional development for educators and organizations looking to implement hands-on sustainable education. The Green Ambassador Institute is an organic grass-roots program that was developed by students, for students, and for the benefit of the world that the students will inherit. Their strategy through all of their programs is to provide experiences for the Green Ambassadors to acquire knowledge and develop the skills that will not only help them in this program, but also provide them with real-world skills for personal, academic, and professional success. The students take the issue, research and develop solutions, and socially market the solution to their peers and the community at-large.

Madeline Cowen and Larissa Weinstein, while students at George Washington Carver Middle School in Coral Gables, Florida, worked with the organization, “Dream in Green”, to help the school reduce energy consumption and save considerable amounts of carbon emissions and money – over $53,000. They looked into installing solar panels on G.W. Carver’s roof, but were advised to improve energy use and consumption in the school through other ways without installing the solar panels. Painting the roof of their school white, for example, was one simple and inexpensive action that made a significant difference in reducing building temperature and contributed to the overall energy use reductions and cost savings.

Through this process at G.W. Carver Middle School and later while students at Coral Gables High School, Madeline and Larissa learned that to successfully reduce energy consumption and to adopt sustainable practices requires a network of people and cooperation. With Dream in Green, a nonprofit that supports the efforts of Miami Dade and Broward County schools to be more environmentally friendly, Larissa and Madeline executed several projects in working toward specific goals with the organization. They were able to transform CGHS into a Dream in Green school, planning sustainability projects that necessitated the involvement and cooperation of faculty, staff, administrators, and the student body. Together they led Gables Earth, the environmental club at CGHS, where they successfully expanded the recycling program. As they learned through their experiences working with Dream in Green, “going green” is accessible to all and even the smallest steps can have tremendous impact.

Dream in Green responds to climate change by developing and implementing educational programs that empower people to help solve this critical issue. They promote environmentally sustainable behaviors, including energy and water conservation, waste reduction and recycling. They build partnerships in the local community for the purpose of reducing the environmental footprint of schools, households, local governments, and businesses. Dream in Green’s programs emphasize education and behavior change.

As of 2014, Madeline Cowen is a rising junior at Pomona College pursuing a degree in biology and interested in a number of issues, especially those that have environmental applications. The momentum gained from her middle school years onward has translated into habitual practices. Being environmentally conscious is second-nature and advocating for environmental justice follows naturally. During her time at Pomona College, Madeline has participated in the school’s environmental club, has served as an “Eco-Representative” for her dorm. Additionally, the passion and the skills developed from the work with Dream in Green and Gables Earth have led Madeline to other kinds of social justice projects including the Draper Center for Community Partnerships at Pomona College, the school’s center for community engagement. As a student coordinator, she has organized and led two projects: Food Recovery Network, which delivers leftover food from our dining halls to a local shelter every night; and SF Alternabreak, a service learning trip to San Francisco, in which she led a group of 12 students to participate in local environmental and social justice work.

Larissa, building off the momentum from her early environmental and social activism, is a third year at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts. Larissa’s work with Dream in Green, and later with her participation in the Young Voices for the Planet films with Lynne Cherry, led to opportunities including a panel at the Sustainable Environmental Journalism (SEJ) conference in Miami, Florida, where she met Rich Zajac, a fellow panelist and entrepreneur. Larissa and Rich are is in the middle of starting a company called Liftoff Ventures, which provides resources to early stage student startups, including those that are using technology to solve global societal and environmental problems. She credits her early involvement with Dream in Green as setting the tone for her environmental work in high school and now her work in socially conscious entrepreneurship.

 

06/08/2014


As you may know EmeraldPlanet is a worldwide non-profit organization dedicated to identifying at least 1,000 ‘best practices’ for sustainable environmental and economic development. Our efforts are to link those having such “best practices” with those needing the technologies, processes, services, and products to be outstanding ecological stewards of their resources. Please support The Emerald Planet Television and The Emerald Trek through your generous donations of US$25, US$50, or US$100. Click the donations button to make your contributions now

Tune in and learn from our outstanding guests and Dr. Sam Hancock, Director and Host of The EmeraldPlanet television productions at 6:30 – 7:30 P.M. (Eastern); 5:30 – 6:30 P.M. (Central); 4:30 – 5:30 P.M. (Western); and 3:30 – 4:30 P.M. (Pacific) time zones.

THANK YOU AS TOGETHER WE CREATE THE EMERALDPLANET!