Daniel organizes communities, volunteers, and projects that are focused on creating a healthy future in Beaver County, PA. RiverWise's mission is "to create a regional identity around the rivers of Beaver County." They help people to think about how their decisions (as individuals, businesses, organizations, and communities) affect the future of the region.
The buildings where we live and spend our time have major impacts on the natural environment and on people's health. Leslie works with architects and builders to teach them how to create buildings that are kind to the environment and provide healthy and inspiring spaces for us to live and learn.
Julia builds and manages her company's sustainability program. This means that she tries to make the company more environmentally responsible to reduce their carbon emissions but also to make sure they are being a good corporate citizen to our employees and communities. Julia graduated from Chatham with a Master in Sustainability in 2019.
Invest your money in a socially conscious way. Put your money where your ideals are! If you don't have enough money to invest right now, that's ok! Next time you get a gift, try to get it locally made or from a Fair Trade vendor.
Search online for individual business' sustainability reports
Check out different companies on social media. Are they talking about sustainability?
Stefani is an architect who designs buildings and plans neighborhoods that make better use of the resources, such as land, energy, and water. She also teaches architecture students on how they can use designs to make our world a better and more sustainable place to live. She is currently helping to create an ecovillage with Chatham University.
Katie leads an organization working to slow climate change and create healthier communities. Communitopia believes climate change can be solved! They teach students about climate change and help them take action
Chelsea and Amber are educators and work to get people of all ages outdoors and interested in nature. Chelsea works at GASP, which specializes in improving air quality in southwestern PA. Amber works at the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy, encouraging community members to use and care for the city's parks.
Ariam works for an organization that aims to improve the conditions of the neighbourhoods by providing necessary tools, resources and connections. Grounded uses the process of reclaiming vacant and underutilized land as a platform for engagement, education, and building trust among communities.
Simona works for a small government authority that owns the biggest sports and gathering venues in Pittsburgh. Her responsibility is to ensure that the Convention Center is up to date on Sustainability certifications and adhering to their promises to be sustainable. She also tries and makes their buildings as energy efficient as possible and monitors to find the best ways to keep them in the best shape. She works with everything from the types of products used to clean the buildings, to the type of paints used, to the types of containers used to serve food all the way up to fixing the roof and lights and plants.
Dr. Lesley-Ann Dupigny-Giroux is a Professor of Climatology in the Department of Geography at the University of Vermont. Her work spans a number of climate hazards and severe weather, with a special focus on flooding and droughts. As the State Climatologist for Vermont, she engages directly with community groups, K-12 schools, State legislators, Federal and State agencies, and national climate organizations. Dr. Dupigny-Giroux is the lead editor of Historical climate variability and impacts in North America, the first monograph of its kind to deal with the use of documentary and other ancillary records in the analysis of climate variability and change.
Ben is a high school student who is actively involved with the Non-Profit Organization, Casa San Jose as a community organizer for social and civic engagement. Ben actively advocates for immigrant-rights and climate change.
As the community engagement coordinator, Kendra focuses on meeting with community members and local organizations to understand their concerns. She take the community concerns and align, or give support to, climate resilient planning to create stronger neighborhoods in Richmond, VA.
Center for Ecoliteracy - Lessons and guides available on systems thinking, ecological education, food and sustainability in their articles and on their resources page.
Sustainable Schools Project, Shelburne Farms - Case studies and big ideas on education for sustainability, selected curriculum resources and civic engagement / PBL framework resources, including "Healthy Neighborhoods / Healthy Kids" and a starter kit on Education for Sustainability.
Green Ribbon Schools, U.S. Department of Education - Apply for this award that recognizes schools that: "(1) reduce environmental impacts and costs, (2) improve the health and wellness of schools, students and staff and (3) provide environmental education"
Green Schools Conference & Expo - Annual conference hosted by the U.S. Green Building Council. Check out their list of past speakers and presenters for ideas for other organizations or individual to follow on Twitter, watch on YouTube, etc.
Green and Healthy Schools Academy, Green Building Alliance - This Pittsburgh-based initiative out of the Green Building Alliance runs a School Sustainability Culture Program, the Inspire Speaker Series, Healthy Schools Technical Assistance and so much more. Check out their resources page, upcoming events and blog for inspiring stories.
Green Schools Initiative - This website has a great list of resources, curricula and toolkits for school administrators, teachers and parents alike, including a quiz on "How green is your school?" and a green products database.
Waters Foundation: Systems Thinking in Education Website includes descriptions of habits of systems thinkers, curriculum connections to systems thinking and various resources including a searchable database that includes lesson plans by subject and grade level.
Buck Institute PBL Works - Sustained Inquiry Resource Page - A list of resources to help educators understand the cycle of Q&A for students to dig deeper and deeper to solve the Driving Question. Including "teaching students to ask their own questions" and "the importance of letting students stumble".
Buck Institute PBL works - Sustained Inquiry and social justice - A social justice oriented classroom supports student-generated questions over educators telling them what questions they will tackle. Students find their voice in a democratic classroom when they are encouraged to ask "What do we know?" / "What do we need to Know?"
PBL - Authenticity Guide - Buck Institute- A document that helps you evaluate your inclusion of authenticity into your project. This document also includes and 'Authenticity Quiz' to ensure you have a full understanding of what a truly authentic PBL project looks like.
"10 tips for Peer Review"- The Guardian - Resource on how to be a better peer reviewer. Gives great advice on how to provide formative evaluation and constructive criticism essential to progressing your peer's project.
"Critique and Revision"- Weebly - Blog for teachers on how to create a classroom culture that welcomes critical thinking, collaboration, and communication skills. Includes links to videos as well as action and assessment on the topic.
Public Product/ Visual-Design Skills
Prezi.com- Interactive presentation website that allows you to choose from a large variety of simple- complex templates. Website has the ability to convert powerpoints to Prezi presentations without having to start from scratch.
Screencast-o-matic.com - Tool to create videos, edit them, and share them with other audiences. A free tool that can increase student engagement. Can be used to drive student conversations and provide video mentorship from stakeholders.
Pittsburgh Green Story - "A comprehensive media resource regarding Pittsburgh's leadership in green innovation." Article topics are sorted by focus areas, including equity, food, health, innovation and more.
If your school is interested in having GIS software on your computers, open source software such as QGIS is available completely free. Esri also offers free access to their ArcGIS Online to make and share maps. If you would like access to Esri's full array of tools in their desktop program, Esri offers about a 99% discount program to schools for $100 per year.
Interactive Online Map Resources
MapMaker Interactive - National Geographic has their own free online map making software that is easy to use. This would be a perfect introductory software for students. Easy to add layers containing data on topics from food, animal locations, and earth systems to population, U.S. history and more.
Environmental Insights Explorer - Google created this site with data from a few cities including Pittsburgh. This online interactive map would be a great introduction to allowing students to add layers to create meaningful maps that tell a story. The site has data on building emissions, rooftop solar potential, transportation emissions, and climate projections. It is a bit more clunky than MapMaker and does not allow for layer overlap.
Pittsburgh Lead Water Lines - This is an interactive map that displays water line types in the city and where construction for new water lines will occur.
"Empathy Field Guide"- Institute of Design at Stanford - Guide that explains to students what empathy is, and why it is important when interviewing. Document explains how to have an interview and how to successfully prepare for one, as well as providing helpful starter questions.
"The Saturday Light Brigade" - Slbradio.org - Pittsburgh-area local radio show that offers school programs with a variety of options between curricula for one time, daily, or weekly session. Radio program offers topics such as self-expression, digital audio recording and editing, interviewing, community engagement and oral history. Many of the students who work with SLB radio are often featured on their show.
"Education-Collaboration" - OnSide Learning - Video suggested for late elementary or early middle grades that defines collaboration, explains its importance in everyday situations and why it is a good skill to have to work well with others.
"Awareness Activities" - edchange.org - Website provides a large variety of activities to do with students to raise their cultural awareness. Ranges from strategies and preparation to icebreakers and introspectives. These activities will help students build understanding and relationships across difference.
Teachingforchange.org - A whole website devoted to building social justice in the classroom and provides a multitude of resources to teachers on how to be more culturally responsive.
Project Scheduling and Leading Campaigns
Sample for student - Project Management Document - Adapted from BetterLesson.com evolution - Ten day project. This document will help any student with organizing their thoughts and coming up with a game plan on how to follow through with the project. Helps you create a step-by-step to not become overwhelmed with the amount of tasks to complete by a deadline.
Office of Open Records - Pennsylvania's Sunshine Act - This resource answers many frequently asked questions about this Act, also known as the Open Meetings Law. Article thoroughly explains the rights that a citizen has when attending a public meeting and how to go to about commenting.
Peer Review: A student guide - throughtheclassroomdoor.com - Guide for students that explains how to effectively peer review, and what not to do. Provides guidelines for giving and receiving feedback, and how to state constructive comments. This resource also answers common questions about peer review.
Feedback games - experiential-learning-games.com - Playing these feedback games with your students will show your students the importance of effective communication, especially when giving and receiving constructive feedback. This resource provides two different games that are best to be used before students practice constructive feedback with their pbl projects.
Organizations, News, Curriculum and Other Resources by Topic
Breathe Project - working to promote clean air and inspire healthy communities across southwestern Pennsylvania using science to understand the quality of the air we breathe, build public awareness and improve community health and wellness.
Lesson Plan: Degas - Understanding Art through Nonverbal Means - The lesson comes from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in which uses digit images of art to conduct the lesson. This lesson uses The Little Fourteen-Year-Old Dancer by Edgar Degas to guide students to use writing, drawing, or movement as a means to share evidence-based inference. This connects English Language Arts and Visual Arts standards.
Lesson Plan: Urban Life and the Natural World - The lesson comes from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in which uses digit images of art to conduct the lesson. This lesson uses Autumn Landscape by Louis Comfort Tiffany to guide students to use art as a lens to see the relationship between urban and rural settings. This connects English Language Arts, Geography, Science, U.S. History, and Visual Arts standards.
COP 23 - President David Finegold will serve as one of 3 representatives from U.S. universities to attend the 23rd Conference of the Parties to the UN Conference on Climate Change in November of 2017. Click here to see the itinerary for when U.S. representatives, including President Finegold, will partake in panel discussions at the U.S. Climate Action Center, in Bonn, Germany.
Pittsburgh Area Local Organizations and News
Peduto Announces Executive Order on Climate Change - Pittsburgh Post Gazet June 3rd, 2017 - Pittsburgh is dedicated towards remaining below the 1.5 degrees Celsius warming target set out by the Paris Climate Accord. Pittsburgh will look to transition the city's fleet of vehicles to clean hybrid and electric vehicles, improve the efficiency of city buildings, and hold firm on the commitment to renewable energy sources for municipal operations by 2030.
Pittsburgh Climate Initiative - A collaboration of organizations that look to ensure the City of Pittsburgh is following through on its Climate Action Plan. The organization additionally offers a few tips on how to reduce one's carbon footprint and fight climate change. See their "Library" tab for links to Pittsburgh's actual Climate Action Plans and Greenhouse Gas Inventories.
Sustainable Pittsburgh - This organization attempts to integrate environmental quality decision making in Pittsburgh through both partnerships and collaboration, and communications/education. Sustainable Pittsburgh offers professional development for business and community leaders to come together and share ideas on sustainability solutions. Additionally, Sustainable Pittsburgh has a sustainability performance platform, which allows Pittsburghers to better address climate change.
Tree Pittsburgh -This organization aims to plant and maintain trees throughout Pittsburgh, while educating people on the benefits of trees. Trees sequester carbon, and planting and maintaining trees is one way to reduce climate change in Pittsburgh.
Climate Reality Leadership Corps - An organization that trains average citizens to become leaders on climate change by giving them the skills, resources, and access to fight climate change head on. Pittsburgh hosted a Climate Reality Leadership Corps Conference from October 17th-19th in 2017. You can still join any of the organization's initiatives, including the Pittsburgh Chapter even if you did not attend the training in Pittsburgh!
National Resource Defense Council (NRDC) - The NRDC provides a list of twelve actions that you can take to mitigate climate change, like purchasing better light bulbs, reducing your water waste, and reducing your food waste by eating all of the food that you buy.
Climate Change in the American Mind - A report by the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication showing current statistics on the perceived risks, worries, and beliefs of Americans on climate change. This information shows that most Americans, 7 out of 10, believe climate change is happening.
Alliance For Climate Education - A website that provides information for high school students to better understand climate change, the greenhouse gas effect, and how climate change will affect an individual's region. Student can also join the Youth Action Network, which allows a student opportunities towards finding ways to take action on climate change, and gives updates on relevant climate change news.
NOAA Climate.gov - A video from the EPA that aims to help people understanding the basic science behind climate change, and how to tackle climate change.
Paris Climate Accord: What is it - NPR - June 1st, 2017 - In December of 2015, representatives from nearly every country on planet Earth met, discussed, and agreed upon creating an international framework towards tackling climate change. This historic agreement sees nations looking to keep global temperatures below 1.5 degrees Celsius compared to preindustrial temperatures in order to avoid the catastrophic events associated with climate change.
The Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change - This academic report gives readers a better understanding about the impacts of climate change on human health through graphs, panels, and information from scientists, health professionals, doctors, and other experts.
Alliance of Nurses For Healthy Environments - This organization is a coalition of nurses who aim to incorporate the linkage between climate change and health into their profession. The Alliance also provides resources and tools for nurses, or anyone, to take action on climate change in their community.
American University - Finding Hope in Climate Engineering - 03/19/18 - Geoengineering is one approach humans could take to mitigate the impacts of climate change on a global scale. However, some of the potential consequences of geoengineering remain unknown, and the approach is seen as controversial. Knowledge of geoengineering may lead to more student creative climate change solutions/ideas.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Office Of Education - These grants are available for educators in various parts of the U.S., and are awarded to projects and education surrounding ecosystem stewardship and resilience. These grants also look to fund projects to increase the amount of K-12 curriculum on earth systems science education.
Nature Works Everywhere Grant - The Nature Conservancy - Grants of $2,000 will be awarded to 60 public or charter urban area schools (elementary, middle, and high) who are looking to address climate change through green infrastructure projects (rain gardens, urban forestry projects, native gardens). The deadline for this grant application in 2017 was November 3rd.
Examples In Action
Deep Time Walk - An app that allows people to view the history of the Earth through an interactive 4.6 km walk. This app is a great way to gain perspective on climate change, and can inspire action on mitigating the effects of climate change.
Project Drawdown - World Famous economist Paul Hawken, with the help of scientists and policymakers, proposes 80 solutions to reverse global warming. Project Drawdown looks to educate people on how the world can solve climate change by 2050.
Climate Change Modules from NASA and PBS - (Middle-High School) - These modules are situated for educators to gain a better understanding of the foundations of climate change in order to learn how to teach climate change to middle and high schoolers. Each module contains STEM resources as well. Modules include the impacts of a warming climate, an intro to Earth's dynamically changing climate, and the coastal consequences of sea level rise.
Climate Kids - (2nd-6th grades) - An interactive website from NASA that better helps elementary school students learn about climate change through games, activities, and videos.
Climate Classroom Kids (3rd-5th) - This set of curriculum provides ways for teachers to speak to students about climate change. Additionally, this curriculum provides activities and lessons for students to understand how climate change is related to wildlife and ecosystems.
Chatham University Participates in Moth Survey - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - April 21, 2016 - Pittsburgh assembles 1 of 20 international moth boards to participate in an international moth survey studying the effects of climate change on moth territories.
Unassessed Water Project - Chesapeake Conservancy - Chatham Professor Dr. Utz and a student join the unassessed water project looking at biological and chemical properties of waterways
Trout in the Classroom Engages Kids - Kidsburgh - November 9, 2017 - Chatham University's Falk School of Sustainability, among others, lends itself as a resource in a school initiative to increase the learning about the importance of water quality management through aquaponics.
Pittsburgh-Area Local Organizations and News
Burgh Bees - Burgh bees is a local community bee apiary that established pollinator gardens to provide a safe haven for honey bees. The organization runs programs to educate individuals on beekeeping and lists local resources and funding opportunities for starting apiaries and pollinator gardens.
#Feed a Bee Initiative in Allegheny County - Pittsburgh City Paper - March 20, 2019 - The Allegheny Conservation District received a grant from FEED a BEE to plant pollinator gardens throughout Allegheny County.
Penn State Extension Demonstrator Gardens - Visit Allegheny County demonstration gardens for a self-tour of beautiful flora, herb, and pollinator gardens. Pollinator gardens are part of the Master Gardeners pollinator program to provide ecological and educational benefits.
Native Plant Initiative - A collaboration between the Garden Club of Allegheny County and supporting organizations, this program is designed to reinstate the presence of native species found in the Allegheny Plateau.
Pittsburgh Park Conservancy - Installed seasonal pools to create ecological habitat and alleviate storm water runoff in Highland Park. Check out other conservation projects in local Pittsburgh parks on the main site!
National Aviary - Website provides details on the Pittsburgh location, local conservation projects, and exhibits.
Allegheny County Conservation District - This organization is dedicated to conservation in Allegheny County. They provide resources on environmental topics including soil erosion, storm-water management, agriculture, and educational opportunities.
USDA Forest Service - Describes the importance of pollinator gardens, concerns that need to be addressed when developing a pollinator garden, and information regarding native plants that attract specific pollinators based on geographic location.
USDA Department of Agriculture - This resource provides a guide for locating international and region-specific invasive species. Additionally, the site provides resources for reporting and identifying invasive species. For more information on ongoing initiatives to protect PA wildlife click here.
Biodiversity Heritage Library - Dedicated to encouraging ongoing education on biodiversity related topics, this site contains a large online public access collection of biodiversity literature.
Convention of Biological Diversity - Leading international effort on the conservation of biodiversity and sustainable use of natural resources. The convention has created several programs to conserve biodiversity across biomes and documents predicting the global biodiversity outcome.
Pollinator Partnership - This organization provides a full list of resources related to the benefits of pollinator gardens, how to build different pollinator gardens, and the considerations involved in creating a garden.
Fauna and Flora International - Habitat loss is one of the main threats to biodiversity. Learn more about habitat loss and how organizations like Fauna and Flora International help to protect species and prevent habitat loss through science and partnerships.
World Wildlife Fund - Look here for the latest news on global biodiversity/ species threats. The World Wildlife Fund is one of the most long-standing organizations fighting to protect species diversity from both human and environmental harm. To learn more about the threats to global biodiversity and the subject check out the organization's resources.
Champion Schools program - Granted through Phipps Conservatory, this program awards grants to schools based off of three select categories. Grants have been awarded to schools in the past to maintain pollinator gardens.
Pollinator Live-Grant - Check here for a list of grants that can be used to create a school pollinator garden. Participate in Pollinator Live's educational program and increase your chances of getting funding from Green Works.
New Cooperative Group Forms to Tackle Invasive Plants - The Bradford Era - February 26, 2018 - The Allegheny Plateau Invasive Plant Management Area was formed to combat the establishment of invasive species in the area. The main focus of the group is on educational programs and building awareness of the threat of invasive species on local biodiversity.
The National Wildlife Federation - Has established several educational programs to engage young leaders on a variety of ecology related topics. Check specific programs for classroom activities to engage students in hands on environmental learning.
Pollinator Live - This organization provides a full list of lesson plans aligned with the National Science Educational Standards to educate students on the role of pollinators in the environment.
The Invasion Game - An interactive game that can be used across multiple levels to help students become more aware of invasive species and the obstacles to stopping their expansion.
NGSS Biology - Check here for a list of ecology and biodiversity lesson plans.
Grow Pittsburgh - Grow Pittsburgh's mission is "to teach people how to grow food and promote the benefits gardens bring to our neighborhoods."
Garfield Community Farm - Community Farm offering variety of educational opportunities such as farm tours, field trips and classes at the farm for all ages of students.
Manchester Craftsmen's Guild - The mission is to "inspire urban youth through the arts." They offer art apprenticeships for high school students and supplemental art classes and summer classes to children of all ages, in addition to classes for teachers and adults, the MCG Invitational, and a visiting artists series.
Plantscape, Inc - Located in Pittsburgh, PA; Industrial landscape company that can build green walls.
Burgh Bees - "Burgh Bees' seminars and mentorship programs help teach beginning bee-keepers how to responsibly keep their own hives and maintain urban apiaries." Bugh Bees also has an online resource library about beekeeping and bee population management.
412 Food Rescue - Located in Pittsburgh, PA but works in metro-Pittsburgh region; 412 Food Rescue creates programs and infrastructure designed to scale and replicate food recovery in urban regions.
Community Kitchen Pittsburgh - "Community Kitchen Pittsburgh is a mission-based, multi-faceted food service company." Goals include workforce development, community-engaged social enterprise, and food waste reduction. Programs include workforce development, food access and food education.
Pittsburgh Food Policy Council - "The council is committed to working with City officials and residents of Pittsburgh to develop food and urban agriculture policy. The Council also provides technical assistance, education, momentum and support on issues related to food production, food access, food distribution, health/nutrition and urban planning."
Just Harvest - Allegheny County; "We address hunger in Allegheny County at its root - economic injustice - through a focus on public policy and community food access." Their advocacy work revolves around, access to benefits, child nutrition, fair taxes and budgets, healthy food, and community building.
Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank - Located in Pittsburgh, PA with branches in metro-Pittsburgh; "Our mission is to feed people in need and mobilize our community to eliminate hunger. We are a proud member of Feeding America." GPCFB offers a multitude of programs for constituents and volunteer opportunities.
Zero Waste Pittsburgh - Pennsylvania Resources Council - "Zero Waste Pennsylvania provides waste reduction techniques to various commercial businesses, residents, institutions, and special events across the state."
City of Pittsburgh Recycling Office - Program of the Department of Public Works offering residential and commercial recycling through weekly pickups or at the recycling drop-off center.
AgRecycle - AgRecycle provides compost collection and drop-off services for: food scraps, yard debris, manures, untreated wood waste, corrugated and most other organic by-products.
Shadyside Worms - Located in Pittsburgh, PA; "Shadyside Worms is a composting business that specializes in vermiculture- also known as composting worms." Programs include curbside compost exchange program, consultations, and workshops.
Edible Learning Lab - Modern Steader - Searchable resource database with information on seeds, soil management, vermiculture, hydroponics, composting, water management, seed saving libraries, and teaching kitchens.
School Garden Food Safety - Food Safety tips for school gardens, including planting practices, harvesting, composting, and consuming.
Seeds of Change Grant Program - Up to $25,000 for school or community garden projects. Must be a 501c3 organization. 1st round is vote-based so community engagement and support for the project is necessary. Grant cycle usually begins annually around March 1st.
Healthier U.S. School Lunch Challenge - Open to Team Nutrition Schools participating in School Lunch and Breakfast Programs at any time during school year. Receive awards (Bronze-Gold with Distinction) for nutrition standards.
Nourish: Food + Community Curriculum - 7 free lessons on seasonal food, local food, food traditions, food and ecosystems, analyzing food ads, school lunch survey and action projects. Suitable for use in social studies, science, health or English classes. Requires sign-up to download.
Green Building Alliance - Pittsburgh-area chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council that runs initiatives like the Pittsburgh 2030 District and the Green and Healthy Schools Academy. Great professional development events and resources (check out their Inspire Speaker Series). Also, check out GBA's newsroom page for recent Pittsburgh-area news stories related to green buildings.
evolveEA - Sustainable design firm in the Pittsburgh area that has worked on urban, building and organizational change, including projects in Millvale, Larimer, Lawrenceville and more.
Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation - Historic preservation is sustainable! The PHLF runs a sustainable architecture design challenge for schools. Chatham has partnered with PHLF to help teach topics in green buildings to schools participating in this challenge and can offer buildings on the Eden Hall Campus for redesign projects.
LEED Certification - U.S. Green Building Council - The most popular green building certification system. LEED offers credits in energy, water, site, materials, transportation and more for new buildings, existing buildings, neighborhoods, homes and more.
Sustainable Materials - EarthDayNetwork (6th-8th grades) - Students compare costs and health benefits of specific building materials. Extension activity includes presenting state incentives for green building material use to the school principal or district administration before a building renovation project.
Rachel Carson Homestead Association - People have the opportunity to tour Rachel Carson's childhood home, located in Springdale PA, and learn more about Rachel's life and contribution to the environmental field.
Rachel Carson Council (RCC) - This resource provides reports related to climate justice, or the link between healthy communities and environmental dangers. One report focuses on how toxic waste disproportionately affects disadvantaged communities.
EarthJustice - An organization that provides legal assistance to communities that have been disproportionately impacted by pollution, pesticides, and/or climate change. EarthJustice takes action to protect children from toxic chemicals, pesticide drift, and pollutants near schools.
Energy Innovation Center - Located in the Hill District, "The Energy Innovation Center is a Pittsburgh based,not-for-profit organization with a mission to engage corporate and community leaders, align workforce development and education, develop and demonstrate technology, and incubate businesses, to support emerging clean and sustainable energy markets."
Conservation Consultants, Inc. - Located in South Side, CCI provides advocacy and education toward "healthy, whole home performance and energy conservation."
Zero Fossil - Sustainable event rentals in the Pittsburgh area, including interactive generator bikes, an ADA compliant hand crank generator, solar powered fountain and more.
Land Art Generator Initiative - Design group that produces public art that also generates renewable energy, enhance the quality of life in a community and more. They also have a free downloadable guide to renewable energies on their website.
Department of Energy - Find a renewable energy educational or training program near you. Other educational opportunities provided by local colleges often tie into regional workforce needs.
Examples in Action
Trail Town Program - The Student Conservation Associations' Trail Town Program helped towns along the Great Allegheny Passage develop around their mixed use trail.
Sustainable Indiana County - Indiana's Sustainable Economic Development Task Force identifies opportunities for growth in the agriculture, energy, sustainable building and environmental restoration sectors.
USDA Farmers Market Directory - Agriculture is often the backbone of rural communities. This directory can help find a local farmers market to support your local farmer and keep dollars in the local economy. This directory also lists winter markets, products available and even accepted payment methods (credit card, SNAP, FMNP, etc).
Local Harvest CSA Directory - Find Community Supported Agriculture programs, and other ways to support local farmers, in this grassroots directory.
Solar United Neighbors - Rural communities can support local sustainable businesses and increase their resilience by creating a solar co-op. Solar power can make communities more resilient by giving them control of their energy production, by reducing localized pollution from power plants and by saving money to use for other needs or projects.
Appalachian Regional Commission - ARC awards grants to organizations (including schools) with project ideas that align with their 2016-2020 strategic plan. Developing and supporting STEAM programs and workforce training are listed as action items in goal #2.
Just Films PGH - This monthly screening of a social justice and gender film is co-sponsored by Chatham University Women's Institute, Gwen's Girls, the Women and Girls Foundation, the Women's Law Project, and YWCA Greater Pittsburgh.
What's Up Pittsburgh - An organization that hosts anti-racist leadership development for white identifying people in Pittsburgh. See their study group and resources pages for suggested readings, podcasts and more.
"The Limits of 8" - Pittsburgh Post Gazette - August 2, 2017 - Article demonstrating that Section 8 Housing is only available in low-income, high crime areas, and those with housing choice vouchers don't have real choice.
World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh - An organization committed to international engagement and awareness of global issues. They offer Global Fluency Training and other opportunities for educators and schools.
Pittsburgh Public Schools: Equity Getting to All : Resources from the PPS system that examine ways to limit racial disparities by creating more equitability in the classroom and at school. The Equity Progress Review document aims to empower teachers, as well as highlight statistics on the racial disparities regarding school suspensions and incidents. The Getting to All document examines the proficiency gap between white and African American students. Getting to All also sets specific targets (from 2017-2022) towards African American academic achievement.
Facing History and Ourselves - Educator resources and professional development opportunities centered around racism, civic engagement, immigration and other topics. Includes concrete ways sefor teachers to help students to build humanity and explore identity.
Resist - Grants supporting social justice organizing and grassroots social justice activism (up to $4,000).
Three Rivers Community Foundation - Offering grants to support economic justice, environmental justice, LGBTQ Rights, racial justice, and women's rights, especially when initiatives are youth-led ($500-$4,000).
Examples In Action
Lawrenceville Corporation - The first Community Land Trust in Western PA proves Lawrenceville can take steps towards disrupting gentrification.
Chatham University MSUS/MBA Program - Chatham University offers a dual degree for graduate students in both sustainability and business. Additionally the MBA program at Chatham allows students to concentrate some of their studies on sustainability in business.
Champions For Sustainability Champions For Sustainability is a program of Sustainable Pittsburgh that looks to connect businesses in Pittsburgh with professional networks and best practices of sustainability. Champions For Sustainability also provides opportunities for Pittsburgh businesses to achieve recognition in sustainability through initiatives like the Green Workplace Challenge and more.
Sustainable Small Business Designation Program - This program certifies businesses so consumers can see which organizations are environmentally and socially sustainable. To achieve Small Business Designation, a business must meet a set of business criteria judged by Champions For Sustainability and Sustainable Pittsburgh.
B Corps - A nonprofit organization who certifies for-profit companies for socially and environmentally responsible operations. B Corps certification helps consumers find sustainable businesses. Click here to browse through B Corps certified businesses.
Like it or Not, Sustainability is Now Core to Your Business- Fortune Magazine - September 24, 2015 - This article provides tips for companies committed to becoming more sustainable, including setting measurable targets (i.e. greenhouse gas reductions) and creating incentives for sustainability practices inside the company. The article also highlights the economic benefits companies have received from investing in sustainable measures.
2017 Global 100 Results - Corporate Knights Magazine - - This index represents the 100 most sustainable companies in the world. Corporate Knights grades each company on its Global 100 based on criteria surrounding resource management, employee management, and financial management. For further methodology on how Corporate Knights ranks each company, click here.
Advancing Sustainability: HR's Role -A Society for HR Management report based on surveys of HR professionals on implementing sustainability in business. The report looks at how sustainability is impacting and influencing HR Departments. HR plays a major role in implementing the sustainability practice of a company.
Triple Bottom Line - The Economist - November 13, 2009 - An article defining the triple bottom line of people, planet, and profit. Companies striving towards achieving the triple bottom line seek to align with the demands of consumers, who are looking for more sustainable businesses.
Monday -A job search website that lets you filter jobs by topic. Each of the topic filter are the various United Nation Sustainable Development Goals!
Examples In Action
Ceres - A nonprofit organization that looks to transition businesses and companies towards integrating sustainability. Through its research and partnerships, Ceres helps drive investors, utilities, and policymakers to invest in sustainability initiatives, and transition away from fossil fuels.
B Corps in the Classroom - (High School) -B Corps provides resources like powerpoints for educators to use as tools to teach students about the basics of B Corps. B Corps also provides resources that will allow students to think critically about the role businesses play in social and environmental issues.
Bike Pittsburgh - News, initiatives and resources from this bike advocacy organization, including bike route maps for the city.
Design Center - "A regional non-profit that provides design and planning technical support to residents who want to improve the quality of their neighborhoods." They also provide design fund grants to spark positive social change.
East Liberty Development, Inc. - Website includes plans and studies on transportation and community action plans regarding development in the Pittsburgh neighborhoods of East Liberty and Larimer.
Larimer Consensus Group - Neighborhood-based group working to ensure community voices are central to the implementation of the Larimer Vision to Action Plan
Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission - Responsible for "planning and prioritizing the use of all state and federal transportation funds allocated to the 10-county region, including Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Lawrence, Washington and Westmoreland. Website includes access to free data, maps, aerial photographs and more.
Pittsburghers for Public Transit - Resources, news and upcoming events related to public transit advocacy in the Pittsburgh-area. Check out their Transit Bill of Rights and links to transit legislation.
Ecoinnocation District Uptown Oakland - Focusing on the bottom-up creation of an equitable and sustainable community in uptown and oakland. Job creation and transit-oriented development are amongst this initiative's priorities.
Urban Redevelopment Authority - the URA offers a variety of programs and financing products that range from assisting low income clients achieve home ownership to reclaiming brownfields for new development and helping communities reinvent themselves.
Zero Waste Pennsylvania - (Formerly known as Zero Waste Pittsburgh) Zero Waste PA has in-school programs, summer camps and services surrounding zero-waste practices. The Pittsburgh branch is called PRC West, and sells compostable cutlery and napkins.
Agrecycle - A Pittsburgh-based company that collects municipal compost. Agrecycle's services can be used by schools with pre-existing composting bins, or after the school has set up waste sorting station infrastructure.
The Real Cost of Styrofoam Infographic - Green Dining Alliances - This infographic highlights the "real" cost of styrofoam, by factoring in the health and environmental costs of societal styrofoam utilization. The information from the infographic was created by a study conducted by the University of Saint Louis on the Real Cost of Styrofoam.
Ecoliteracy's Rethinking School Lunch Guide - This PDF guide suggests ways for schools to save money when implementing waste reduction strategies. Schools could potentially reduce costs for purchasing reusable utensils by looking for donations from manufacturers, distributors, or local businesses to create a zero waste program at school.
USDA - Student Food Waste Audit Guide - A guide that educates students on conducting a food waste audit to understand the amount of food waste produced by cafeterias. Also, some food waste reduction strategies are included in the guide as well. The guide can be modified to create a food waste audit activity for students.
Environmental Research and Education Foundation Grant - Provides money towards effective waste management practices, as well as funding for educational projects focused on reducing waste. First, you would need to submit a pre-proposal (which is a downloadable form available on the webpage). ($15,000+).
Home Depot Community Impact Grants - The Community Impact Grants provide money for schools to purchase Home Depot supplies needed for waste sorting station construction. (Up to $5,000 in Home Depot gift cards).
Waste Management - Grants are awarded towards environmental education and environmental projects.
The Urban School Food Alliance - Is a group of school districts that collectively serves 2.5 million meals per day. Schools in the Urban School Food Alliance switched from styrofoam trays to compostable plates (that were specifically created by the Urban School Food Alliance). The compostable plates cost .049¢ per plate versus the traditional cost of styrofoam trays at .04¢ per tray. According to the same article, the average cost to send a ton of waste to the landfill is between $50 and $100 per ton on average, however, the cost of a ton of compost is about $20 per ton on average.