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Climate Justice and the City

Fri, Nov 20, 2020    1pm

An interactive virtual workshop to chart a path for Columbia University’s role in advancing environmental and climate justice in New York City’s neighborhoods. Please note that due to the workshop format, this event will not be recorded and available nor available for future viewing.

For decades environmental justice movements and communities have been fighting racism and inequalities of power that lead to skewed distributions of environmental harms such as contaminated air, water, and soil. These movements are also at the core of current climate justice action including the Green New Deal and the recent Climate Equity Act. In the absence of institutional, legal, cultural, and political change, the growing impacts of climate change will deepen these deadly inequalities locally, nationally, and globally. The current moment offers an acute opportunity to imagine alternative futures in which policies, infrastructure, governance, and value systems are recalibrated with equity and sustainability at the center. Scholars at Columbia are joining with community leaders to launch an Environmental Justice and Climate Just Cities Network that engages Columbia researchers and faculty across disciplines, supports co-learning with environmental justice advocates and community-based organizations, and shares learning across national and global networks. Our goals are to inform the underlying value system, operating model, research, and curriculum of the Earth Institute and the Columbia University Climate School, make our institutions more responsive to the critical, urgent social and environmental demands of this moment, and support direct application of climate just approaches to implementation of urban policy, advocacy, planning, and programs.

The workshop will be hosted by James Marston Fitch Assistant Professor of Historic Preservation Erica Avrami, Editor of the series Issues in Preservation Policy; Professor Reinhold Martin, Sequence Director of the M.Arch History and Theory Curriculum and Director of the Temple Hoyne Buell Center for the Study of American Architecture; Professor Kate Orff, Director of the MSAUD program; and Adjunct Associate Professor Thaddeus Pawlowski, Managing Director of the Center for Resilient Cities and Landscapes with active participants and guest including Jacqueline Klopp, Co-director of the Center for Sustainable Urban Development, Earth Institute at Columbia University; Christian Braneon, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, Earth Institute at Columbia University; Génesis Abreu, Youth Environmental Program Manager, Friends of WHEELS; Sonal Jessel, Policy and Advocacy Coordinator, WE ACT for Environmental Justice; Laurie Schoeman, Senior Program Director, National Initiatives, Resilience, Enterprise Community Partners, Inc; Arturo Garcia-Costas, Program Officer, Local, National and International Environment, New York Community Trust; Radley Horton, Lamont Research Professor, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory; Lisa Dale, Lecturer in Discipline in Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology, Faculty Affiliate, Center for Resilient Cities and Landscapes; Paul Gallay, Lecturer in Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology and President, Riverkeeper; and other leaders in climate research and environmental justice advocacy.

Mia Soto, WHEELS Student will present on her work in the Clean Air Green Corridor.

The second session of a two-part conference on housing, public health and spatial justice, racial equity, and climate justice. In 2020, compounding crises across the globe encompassing economic injustice, racial inequity, and climate change have ignited public dialogue and urgent calls for action. Research and policy experts at Columbia GSAPP host conversations on how the field can respond to interlocking issues in public health, water, housing, infrastructure, migration, resilience, and resistance. The first session, Health and the City is scheduled for Friday, November 13.

Please note, this event is not available for archival viewing.