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A March Letter from Your SLC Co-Chairs

Dear Sustainability Leadership Council Members and Partners,

Despite the extra day, February flew by thanks to all of your tremendous effort and energy. Our subcommittees and working groups are buzzing with activity: the High-Performance and Healthy Building Working Group of the Operations Subcommittee is hard at work reviewing existing building guidelines as they create a vision for new green building guidelines for the university. Members of the Engagement Subcommittee are in the process of establishing a formal alumni-student professional sustainability network with the help of Hopkins Connect. Our Research and Academic Subcommittee members are joining forces as we address the recently released CUE2 report on undergraduate education, the programming potential out 555 Pennsylvania Avenue, and planning for the inaugural SLC Annual Symposium.

In the face of COVID-19 pandemic and university-wide changes to operations, there will be some adjustments to the format of the SLC Annual Symposium. While still scheduled for Friday, April 17th, our Symposium Planning Committee is in the process of moving components of the day’s agenda to online platforms. While this may mean deviations from our original program, we remain energized to convene students, faculty, alumni, and staff to engage in discussion and thought-sharing around the topic of “Earth Day at 50: Renewing JHU’s commitment to a livable planet.” This unprecedented health crisis provides the unique opportunity to demonstrate the feasibility of large scale, low environmental impact events. By successfully hosting an engaging virtual convening we aim to demonstrate that low travel, low emissions, low waste options are viable. Please help us achieve this goal by maintaining the calendar hold on your schedules and sharing information with your peers, colleagues, and students as we keep you updated over the course of this transition.

Additionally, we are thrilled to formally announce that Andrew Revkin, founding director of the Initiative on Communication and Sustainability at Columbia University’s Earth Institute, will serve as the Symposium’s headline speaker. Mr. Revkin is one of America’s most honored and experienced environmental journalists; he has written on climate change for more than 30 years, reporting from the North Pole to the White House, the Amazon rainforest to the Vatican. He has held positions with The New York Times, National Geographic, and Discover Magazine and now works to build programs, courses, tools, and collaborations bridging the communication gaps between science and society to cut climate risk and boost social and environmental resistance. We are excited for you to join us in welcoming Andrew Revkin to campus on April 17th as he discusses making information matter on a noisy, polarized but deeply observed and connected planet. This Symposium is open to all JHU affiliates so, again, please share the event information with your networks.

We hope that longer days and the promise of spring energize all of you as much as us. Again, we cannot thank you enough for your commitment and hard work. Enjoy the sunshine and the warmer weather and we look forward to connecting again soon.

With gratitude,
Sustainability Leadership Council Co-Chairs
Peter Winch and Bob McLean

The Johns Hopkins Sustainability Leadership Council (SLC) was formally announced on Earth Day 2019. The charge of the SLC is to provide advice and recommendations to the Provost on policies, programs, and other initiatives that will build a greater role for Johns Hopkins in teaching, research, and leadership on environmental sustainability, both locally and globally. It is also tasked with amplifying the University’s research and practice around environmental sustainability, through fostering academic collaboration and supporting the work of the Office of Sustainability.
Sustainability Leadership Council Website

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