Environmental Concerns Speaker Series

Carol Stone photo

Carol Stone

The Environmental Concerns Speaker Series is offered on the Second Monday, September through May 7:30 – 9:00pm.
In case of changes, please check the Calendar on this Website or call a Team Leader before attending.
Location: Belmont Village, 1100 San Pablo Avenue, Albany. Parking available and disabled accessible.

Team Leaders:
Carol Stone, 510-549-0959, seastone11@hotmail.com
Gail Schickele, 415-922-6627, gail.schickele@gmail.com
Jeanette Zerneke, zernjl@gmail.com

The LWVBAE Natural Resources, Environmental Concerns Speakers Series offers talks on environmental and related topics. We invite experts on important issues to speak and answer questions.
2018-19 E-Concerns Speaker Series Dates:
September 17
October 8
November 12
December 10
February 11 (Int’l Day of Women and Girls in Science)
March 11
April 8
May 13

Previous Talks May 2018 and Earlier

Ed Burgess StrategenThe Season opens October 9 with Edward Burgess, who will speak  about what some key states (including CA) are doing about clean energy at a time that the US has withdrawn from the Paris Climate accord. He will focus on both stager and technology. Senior Manager at Berkeley-based Strategen Consulting, a Certified Women and Minority-Owned Small Business that collaborates with organizations to identify opportunities, evaluate risks, and launch successful ventures in clean energy and advanced grid technologies.

Prior to joining Strategen, Burgess consulted clients on policy and regulatory issues related to the electricity sector in the Western U.S. in the renewable energy and energy efficiency industries by helping to shape state regulations and policies related to energy portfolio standards, distributed generation, and transmission planning. As Project Manager and Research Specialist at Arizona State University, Burgess managed two new initiatives at ASU’s Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law: the Energy Policy Innovation Council (EPIC, http://energypolicy.asu.edu) and the Utility of the Future Center (UFC, http://www.utilityofthefuturecenter.org/). He played a lead role in ongoing collaborations with government agencies in Arizona (e.g. Governor’s Office of Energy Policy) seeking expertise on energy policy issues and developed educational materials on key energy policy issues for Arizona and the Southwest. 

November 13 will feature Arlene Blum, Ph.D. Selected by the UK Guardian as one of the world’s 100 most inspiring women and by the National Women’s History Project as one of “100 Women Taking the Lead to Save Our Planet,” Dr. Blum is a biophysical chemist whose research contributed to the regulation of two cancer-causing flame retardants used in children’s sleepwear and prevented unnecessary flammability standards that would have led to the use of hundreds of millions of pounds of persistent toxic chemicals each year.  She is a Visiting Scholar in Chemistry at UC Berkeley and Executive Director and founder of the Green Science Policy Institute. The Institute’s work has contributed to reducing the use of flame retardants and other harmful chemicals in consumer products worldwide. Author of Annapurna: A Woman’s Place and Breaking Trail: A Climbing Life, Dr. Blum led the first American ascent of Annapurna I; the Great Himalayan Traverse across the mountain regions of Bhutan, Nepal, and India; and hiked the length of the European Alps with her baby daughter on her back. Her current “mountain” is to work with decision makers in business and government to produce and purchase products with safer chemicals for a healthier planet. Blum’s awards include selection as an American Association for the Advancement of Science Fellow, and election to the Hall of Mountaineering Excellence.
More info: www.arleneblum.com and www.greensciencepolicy.org/primer

Wednesday, Nov 13,  Daniel Kammen, a Distinguished Professor of Energy at the University of California, Berkeley and a former climate Science Envoy for the State Department will speak.  He was the keynote speaker at an earlier our joint meeting with the UNA of the east Bay and the LWVBAE on the connection between peace and climate change which attracted an audience of 200.

Claire Greensfelder,  Women’s Global Call for Climate Justice
Tom Kelly, KyotoUSA
Reporting on COP21 Climate Talks
January 11, 2016

Claire Greensfelder

Claire Greensfelder

The COP21 climate talks concluded mid-December with much political celebration and an equal if not greater amount of criticism for not going far enough. To better understand the outcomes from Paris, join us for a presentation from Claire Greensfelder, from the Women’s Global Call for Climate Justice, a coalition of more than 24 international environmental, women’s and human rights networks from across the world; and Tom Kelly, executive director and founder of KyotoUSA, a non-profit that encourages local governments, school districts and communities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Both were in Paris for the climate talks and will share what it was like both inside and outside the official meeting.


East Bay Hills Vegetation and Fire History
Jerry Kent
Former assistant general manager of the East Bay Regional Park District

February 8, 2016

When early white settlers came to the Bay Area, they were enamored with its climate but missed the tall hardwood trees of the East Coast and launched large scale tree planting projects across the region that have become our neighborhood forests. The eucalyptus tree planting project was abandoned shortly after the turn of the century when it was discovered the trees did not produce quality lumber, but the forests are still with us, creating fire hazards and ecological concerns that East Bay residents must face. Join us for a presentation from Jerry Kent, former assistant general manager of the East Bay Regional Park District, who will address East Bay Hills vegetation and fire history, including introduction and proliferation of blue gum eucalyptus trees across the East Bay and how the planting of the fast-growing Australian tree has transformed the natural ecology of the Bay including the fire landscape.


The 2015-2016 Speaker Series talks will include speakers from UC Berkeley on California agriculture and the drought, and an expert from the EPA Pollution Prevention Waste Division who works on cutting-edge food waste prevention, reduction and recycling issues including local efforts to produce renewable energy from food waste.


Highlighted Previous Talks

The summaries of talks are written by Co-Chair Gail Schickele.

Leslie Stewart on Crude by Rail in the Bay Area presented on January 12, 2015

Leif Bansner and Paul Freedman on Bay Area Bike Culture Curbing Climate Change presented on Dec 8, 2014

Severin Borenstein on Curbing Fossil Fuels with Renewable Energy in California presented Nov 10, 2014

Sara Kamins onCalifornia’s Net Energy Metering (NEM) presented Oct 13, 2014

DISRUPTION:  screening of 350.org documentary, presented Sep 8, 2014.

The Fracking Debate:  Sierra Club on Fracking presented Jan 13, 2014. and Dr. Paul Henshaw and Dr. Linda Swift on A Geologic Perspective on Fracking, presented Apr 21, 2014.

Dr. Michael Wehner on Extreme Weather in a Changing Climate, presented Mar 10, 2014.

Johanna Hoffman on Resilience on the Oakland Waterfront, presented Nov 10, 2013.

Dr. Al Weinrub on Clean Energy Choices in Community Choice Aggregation, presented Oct 14, 2013

Dr. Glenda Humiston on Farming and Rural-Urban Partnerships , presented Sep 10, 2012

Brooks Ray Smith on Constructed Wetlands for Wastewater Treatment (slides only), presented Sep 7, 2007