Videos from Our Summit

​​​​​

The Truth About Solar Today

Discussing many of the "myths" surrounding solar, such as the "free solar panels" hype by some companies, and the "buy vs. lease" options.

The Truth About Solar Today Video Transcript

[Thomas Edds]: Good morning, ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the summit. My name is Thomas Eades, I own Electric Distribution & Design Systems, and you can see my name over there on the left, E D D S, it is 'eeds', not 'eds'. I've been an electrical contractor here in the Dallas area since 1982, wired the 62 story Momentum Bank, the second tallest building in Dallas, the Federal Reserve Bank, the Crescent, all the IBMs, all the TI wafer fabs and everything, but been around. I had a 2,800 employee company here in Dallas until 9/11, and then when 9/11 happened you know, everything kinda went south, so I sold off what was left of my company and started my wind and solar company. So we've been doing wind and solar for about 19 years, I am from out in west Texas, out Midland, Odessa, if you can't tell my slang. So you know, so but wind makes very good sense out there, not so much here in the Dallas area. Wind, a horizontal wind turbine like the ones in the picture there, it takes a 36 to 38MPH wind to get one to work at its rating. We don't get 36 to 38MPH winds here in the Dallas area, except for the winter nights, and so for that reason, anything west of Weatherford is good, north of Denton is marginal 'til you get up in that Oklahoma, but solar works. There's no moving parts. A wind turbine, there's not a wind turbine out there that I don't work on every six months, 'cause it's things that's connected to, mother nature just eats on them and tears them down, and so anyway. But we'll get started on this, we've been in the top 10% for about eight years, in the top 1% since 2014, '15, '16, '17, '18 and '19. That's fat Elvis, that's our first trailer, a small trailer, and then Moby, all our trucks and trailers are all wrapped like that, that's the Kardashian, except for Casper, Casper hasn't gotten wrapped yet. You can put solar on your house, that's actually my house, and my name's Tommy, my foreman is the guy in the cart on the other end, his name is Tommy also, so it's real easy for all our customers to remember. You can put it on your businesses, it's one thing that I just don't understand why more businesses don't put solar on their roof, 'cause they have all these massive roofs that you could put solar on, it's not intrusive to anybody 'cause they can't see it on the roof, that's one thing they like about it, and it pays your electricity bill. Dollar for dollar, whatever you put into solar will replace the electricity bill. So it's not costing you anymore than what you're already paying out. This is a ground mount that we do in schools, you can put them on the ground. If you have any land, that's my preferable if you have land. It's a little bit more, just you know, say $25 a module more expensive than putting it on your house, but you don't have to worry about it you know, it's it's not on your house, you don't have to worry about taking it off or anything else. When you do put it on your house, your insurance company will – I've only had one customer out of – you know, we've installed over 70,000 solar panels, and we've only had one customer that said that their insurance company actually raised their rate. Most insurance companies, some insurance companies, if you cover more than 30% of your roof, will actually give you a deduction because it actually protects the roof. That is a pole mount that we did at an elementary school here in Dallas over there off of Lovers Lane. They were on the news for a while about the guy that teaches the garden class and everything over there at that elementary school and the city of Dallas was taking money away from programs, so the family actually paid his wages so he could stay there at the school and paid for the solar out there. These are charging stations, actually this is over at Brookhaven college, the students that can go out and sit at those tables and plug in their laptops and their cellphones and charge them over there. Also there's a pergola that we built for – there's a trail that runs all the way from Denton to downtown Dallas, and there's a bridge right there on the back of Brookhaven college that this pergola right there, you can see how we put them in the middle of the solar panels and then it broadcasts the shadow on the ground, on the floor, so they they liked that idea and the solar actually, there's charging stations there also, but in the – on the right on the background, you can see the bridge that goes over that creek over there, there's a bunch of lights on it and that solar there is powering all those lights also. So they – we've even put them on boathouses, you know, so we've put them on tiny homes, you can put them on anything. All our trucks, Moby, fat Elvis and the Kardashian, all of them have solar on them that are completely self-sufficient. When we do a service change at some little old lady's house and she's afraid her meat's gonna spoil in the refrigerator, we just plug it into Moby and run an extension cord over there, plug her refrigerator in, and so she's always happy about that. But everybody, the first – well, there's two questions that everybody asks.

[Speaker A]: I'm from Wylie, I guess we we we have hail.

[Thomas Edds]: Yeah, I know, yeah. First question is always, what if my roof leaks? We've installed over 70,000 panels and I have never had a roof leak where the solar panels are mounted. We've had roof leaks on the other side of the roof that we didn't put solar panels, but we were the last ones up there so we fixed it. It wasn't any argument for that. And the second question is always hail, how do they hold up to hail? Well I have never, out of 70,000 solar panels, ever replaced one, even in Wylie, the hail stones was going through the decking, through the sheetrock and breaking furniture inside the house, and I didn't have one single solar panel break. They're that tough. This is on a commercial roof down downtown Dallas, it's actually a roofing company that we put solar panels on, and there's an elevated neighborhood right back behind them, and on New Year's Eve there's certain demographics that like to discharge their weapons on New Year's Eve, and that was three years ago, and this is last year. It actually lodged in the solar panel, the first one you can see, it didn't it didn't penetrate the solar panel, it just broke the glass, but the the one last year, it actually – that's a .45, it penetrated the glass and mushroomed behind the glass, and it's still working today. The moisture is the only thing that really will will hurt a solar panel, the glass and everything on the front is very tough, like we said. Forklifts aren't very friendly to them, but you know, other than that, the only way you can damage a solar panel is on the back of it, there's a plastic water barrier that seals it and everything. If you scratch the back of it, then it will degrade over time. Modules, almost all the modules are warrantied for 25 years. How many things do you know that somebody would stand behind their warranty for 25 years, you know? 'Cause there's no moving parts, it's just one of those things that they guarantee that they will do 80% in 50 years. So but this is a little video just to show you how tough they are. So yeah, they are very very tough. Like I said, I have never replaced one from hail until about three months ago, there were six and I can't say that they were quality modules to begin with, out in McKinney from that last hailstorm. It did not break the glass, what it did, it broke the module underneath the glass. So the little cells, the black areas there, the cells, it actually broke the cell underneath there and it looked like little gold lightning underneath it, and that's the only way we could tell. They're still working, I have them in my shop, but we replaced those and gave them a bigger system. But you know, they are tough, it's amazing. One of the first jobs that I did that – I don't know, eight years ago over in Arlington, they had a tornado come across south Arlington right over 20, I had just put a system on a house over there and we – I mean it was like two days before we finished it – after we finished it, and so I heard about all the hail and I turn on the news that morning, and the news people were standing in that couple's front yard, they were filming the house across the street 'cause the tornado basically took the top of that house off. So I called them up, I said dude, what does my solar panels look like? You know, I wanted to know. He said, we had 18 inches of hailstorms, 18 inches deep in their front yard, not a single solar panel was broke. He said the tornado came right over the top of their house, but we put the solar panels over the master bedroom and the son's bedroom, just the razor over that part 'cause it needed to face the south, not by design, it's just that was the best location for it. The tornado, not a single shingle was missing over the bedroom, their son's bedroom or their bedroom, not any damage whatsoever, but the living room, kitchen and the garage was on, and I'll show you in a little bit the process of why that happens. Actually, this is starting it. When we start a system, we'll draw it out on the roof with chalk, that way, first rain, the chalk is gone, but we find our joist. We have to actually find the joist and we pre-drill a 5/16ths whole to make sure we hit the center of the joist, we put some roofing pookie around, and then we put this flashing over it. It's the same thing that like your plumbing flashings over your roof and everything, we've used those for 100 million years you know and seals the roof. Well, systems that we put on all have flashings on them. Now I can't say that all solar cells companies use these things, they just will actually just screw a screw through your decking and they don't have flashings and everything. To me, it's not worth my $5 that I have to put into this job to worry about somebody having a roof leak. That's why we've never had a roof leak at the solar modules, and some of the biggest name companies don't use flashings. Once we put the flashings down, then we'll put the rails on and the rails is where the modules will be mounted. This system has micro inverters, under each module it has its own inverter, it inverts – the modules produce DC electric, each one of them produces about 36 to 42 volts DC, that little micro inverter will invert that 40 volt DC to a 240 volt AC, so then it's run through your house in AC just like the rest of your house is. That's a micro inverter system, there's a strung system, kind of the first systems that we came out with years ago that we still use, it's more like the Christmas tree stuff. Like you were saying a while ago, if one module goes bad, then what happens to the string? Well on a strung system, each – on this micro inverter system like this, each individual one is an individual string. They all are talking back to each other, they'll all say hey, I'm okay, you're okay, or one's going hey, something's wrong, I don't have the sun, but y'all take my power and everything and boost yours so you don't lose any power, they're very very smart. The strung system though is kind of like your old Christmas tree lights. If one goes bad, usually the system won't go down because we're aiming for like 600 volts, we're stringing all these modules together to go up to say 500 volts, the new systems are 1,000 volts, the newest one that they're trying to come out with right now is 1,500 volts DC. If you've ever been shocked in your house with 120 volts AC, the reason why you can get off of AC is because it passes zero 120 times a second. In DC, it goes up to that voltage that you're at and it never goes back to zero, so when you get hung up on DC, 600 volt DC, it hurts, and you have to you have to really be mindful to take yourself and let yourself go, force yourself to get off of it. Tommy, one day, was talking about, he was bragging about he was the only one that's a member of our crew that wasn't a member of the 600 volt DC club. Well he talked too quick, 'cause that same day on the way out to Denton to the job, my other helper, we were inside the garage making up the inverter and he was up on the roof and all, and he's about 250, 260, and you could you could hear him, it was picking him up and just flopping him like a like a whale on the beach, and he was hung up pretty good and then he finally got off of it and let go. He said, I didn't know whether just to fall off the roof, or you know, what to do, but he finally got off and he was – like I said, he talked a little too quick for that day. But once we put the rails up and all, then we put the modules on, all the wiring, one thing that the National Electric Code and all the inspectors look for is wire management. All the wires need to be tie wrapped or strapped some way to the railing or the modules, they can't be hanging down on the roof, 'cause the winds will chafe that, the insulation's on the roof and all and then you'll have bare wires and it can damage your system. Used to, the wires that they used when they first came out years ago, it was like candy to squirrels. Squirrels just loved it. Well, the last eight years, the wire manufacturer put some stuff in the wire where varmints don't like it, so we don't have any of those problems anymore, and that's that's the end phase. That's the new IQ7, it's the newest one of their micro inverters, and there'll be one of those underneath each module. Where I said, there's one of these underneath each module and does the inverters independently like that. The strung system, you only have one inverter and it'll be on your wall over there by your meter. We have to put a disconnect within six feet of your electrical meter for the power company to come over, and if they're working down line on your street or something, they don't want you to be back feeding onto the grid while they are working on that system, so you have to sign an interconnect agreement and we have to put a disconnect where they can come over there and turn your system off and put their padlock on it while they're working on the lines, and then they'll come back and turn it back on. Once they turn it back on, once we've set it all up you don't have to worry about it, it will automatically come back up and start recording and all that stuff. The nice thing, the thing about string – strung inverters is you can only monitor at the inverter, so if you have a strung system, you only have one place to monitor, you can only monitor the total amount of electricity that you're producing, whereas in micro inverters, you have an inverter at each module, you can actually tell – there's a map that I can show you that we do of your house, and you can see every single module, how much they're producing, and if you have a

[audio malfunction] makes it a good troubleshooting tool for us because we can actually see which one is not working and we can go up there in about 15 minutes and get it

[audio malfunction] whereas a strung system, it'll take a couple hours to find which one is bad, 'cause it's like hunting for that lightbulb in that Christmas tree string that you used to have to do. Like I said, modules are warrantied for 25 years, most of the inverters now have gone from a 10 year to a 25 year warranty, we've – you know I've replaced the 3 out of 70,000 solar modules, we've probably replaced less than 1% of inverters. They're pretty pretty good. Then all your penetrations in your deck, in your roof that's going into the attic, the wiring and everything, we put a solar deck on there and it's actually got a flange like like the other things, so you don't have any leaks, and there's a thousand caution solar stickers on there, everything has red and yellow stickers that has any kind of solar circuits in there, so the homeowners, any service men that you have working over there, your neighbor that thinks he's an electrician, everybody everybody knows, this is solar, this isn't normal electricity. Like I said, we have to put a disconnect beside the meter and usually there's an inverter – a strung system, the inverter would be the white box that's on the on the right of the disconnect, if it's if it's a micro inverter, there's a combiner box there that we combine all the circuits together before we take it to the disconnect, and then there's a breaker, usually there's a breaker in your existing panel that we back feed right into your panel, you have more pressure than the power company does, so you will use your electricity that you're creating in your house from your solar, you will use it first. Any excess that you have, it will actually push it back out on the grid and turn your meter backwards, so during the day we call what our legal time for solar is 9:00 AM to about 3:00 or 4:00 PM, that's when you'll be producing 90% of all your solar, although on a full moon night you'll actually be producing solar with that full moon. The light fluffy clouds that we have sometimes, if they're white and kinda sparse up in the sky, it will knock a little production down, but the three colors of light that actually make solar works penetrates right through those white clouds. The big black clouds like we've had yesterday and everything, yeah, your system might produce 1%, but they just work. But the all your electricity will go through that disconnect, go back into your back fed breaker in your panel, and you'll use yours and then turn your meter backwards during the day and then let the power company store it, you don't have to have batteries, it's called a grid tie system, and they, by law, they have to allow you to do that. So they'll store your electricity, and then at night when you don't have the solar you just suck it back off the grid and turn your meter forward, and we try to get the system built where at the end of your billing cycle you have you have produced at least 90% of what you've used. We can we can over-bill the system, but the cost of the system versus what you're actually giving back to the power company, you know you're you're actually – unless you're in Garland, I'm in the city of Garland, Garland Power & Light actually pays me for my overage and there is some systems like Green Mountain, TXU has a solar program sometimes, it's – I say it's it's like they pick and choose however they wake up in the morning, what side of the bed they get up on, so you have to be updated all the time which one has got a program on it. Our salesman knows, knows all those guys and they send us all that information all the time. But Green Mountain's kinda the big player of the solar industry, they're 100% renewable generating company and they will, on the end of the billing cycle of that month, if you have an overage, they'll actually book it for a month that you don't have enough. So 9 months a year, we build a system where 9 months a year it'll pay all your electricity, and you'll have a little bit more, but in the summer, the 3 months of the hottest summer, the system isn't built to produce all the electricity there but you have a little money leftover from the winter and so it pays it. Most of my customers say, I haven't had an electricity bill in 7 or 8 years. My electricity bill at Garland Power & Light has been somewhere between $7 and $17 a month for the last 14 years, but I'm fixing to add a little more on it 'cause they got that new program. And then you just let mother nature pay your electricity bill, it's very clean, you know I might be biased but I don't think it's intrusive to the eye, it looks like a big window on your house, and I asked everybody that said, oh, those things are the ugliest things in the world and everything, I said how often do you look at your neighbor's roof you know? You look at their front door and their yard, but how often do you look at their roof? In the state of Texas, HOAs cannot refuse you to put solar on your house. They can make it a little hard for you, for us, 'cause we handle all that kinda stuff to get the HOA approval. Southlake tied us up for two years, but you know, the homeowner was persistent that he wanted solar on his $6 million house, didn't even face the HOA, he was on the back of the property and everything, the HOA property and all, and they just thought that somebody was gonna drive by their house and think, those poor people didn't have enough money to pay for their electricity bill. So they had to put solar up there. But anyway, and then you just turn your meter backwards like I was saying. The wind turbines, we talked a little bit about horizontal wind turbines. This is a vertical wind turbine that that we've been working with Mike over at Be-Wind, they actually are straight up and down like you see. The generators are at the bottom so they they turn in a helix design. This is actually a double helix design. L'Oreal, we put 12 of them on L'Oreals – all the L'Oreal distribution centers. They have nine different distribution centers around the world and we put those on all of them. The biggest one out there of of Mike's, the Be-Wind, is a 7kw, so it's not a big huge producer, but like the solar, you can't see it up there on the roof, so the companies want something to look green so they put those 12 wind turbines in all their distribution centers. We've got a contract now to go put two of them up on all of the Bank of America buildings. We're gonna start with the one in Plano before Christmas. The nice thing about his, they have LED lights on them so they light up at night, so for advertising. But that's pretty much my presentation, if anybody has any questions?

[Speaker B]: Have you had an experience where electricity might have blown out one of your inverters or cut the line on those panels?

[Thomas Edds]: Yeah, there's always – I've been an electrician for – since '76. I taught the third and fourth year apprentices out out at North Lake college for 18 years, and as much as we know how to control electricity, we don't know how to control it you know? It will – it has done some of the most oddest things in the world. Why, it would actually go not go across this piece of wire right here and actually go across a piece of plastic that's not conductive. I did third party investigations for the power company and the cities and all that stuff for years and I got some really really gross photos of of people that got tied up in accidents and everything with electricity, and it's just – we just wonder why that happened, we try our best to do a study and figure out what happened and try to create a environment where it won't happen again, but there's some situations you're just like going, I don't know, you know. I'm not the not the smartest guy in the world, but even the smartest guys are like going, we don't know either, so you know.

[Speaker C]:

[unintelligible] Solar power in parking lots, where they put solar power above the cars to generate

[unintelligible] and people are parking underneath. Is there any of that here?

[Thomas Edds]: Well I actually I had – I met with this campus, I met with this campus for projects the last couple years, but last Tuesday I met with this this college here that they're wanting to do that in all their parking lots, just to – because like you said, in California, there's enough parking lot here to pay for this electricity, and it doesn't cost you any more than what you're already paying the electrical company, so why wouldn't you? That's that's always my my thing. We can finance it for a 13 year note and actually get your electricity bill $5 less than what you were paying the electricity company for 13 years. After you pay that note off, then you have free electricity. Well if you stay with the electrical company, you'll pay that that amount to the electrical company for the rest of the life, plus they're raising your rate every every year, 4% - 5%. So I don't know why people wouldn't, you know? All right.

[Speaker D]: You're getting money back from Garland, but there's some areas that won't pay, they'll let the meter spin back but they don't really pay. Is it Dallas that doesn't pay?

[Thomas Edds]: Well Oncor is in Dallas, they don't really pay but your your billing company, you can sign up with TXU or Green Mountain and they will. If you if you're on Oncor systems, you can pick and choose whatever electrical billing company you want. Some of the co-ops don't allow that, Garland Power & Light, Garland Power & Light – I'm on the city council over there – the Garland Power & Light actually owns the largest generating facility in the state of Texas. They own the one that Denton uses up in Denton, but then we use the ones over there in Garland that we have, and the biggest one's down in down by College Station. It's sitting there idle right now 'cause it's a coal fire. But you know, the more we do sustainable to maintain what you're using on your property, like creating your own electricity, getting your – saving your own rainwater that is coming off your roof, I have like 30,000 gallons of rainwater at my house 'cause I'm about 50% flower gardens, front yard and back yard. My wife is a flower nut and I'm a hole digger, so you know, so it works well. So we water all that kinda stuff. All right?

[Speaker E]: My home has been solar since

[unintelligible] the generator, the electricity was sent back to the power company, only evening we use our solar

[unintelligible] however I agree that

[unintelligible] what do you think about spending energy on environment?

[Thomas Edds]: For recycling them?

[Speaker E]: Yes.

[Thomas Edds]: That's that's you know like everything, we create stuff for one time use and then we bury it in the ground, but that's something that we we do need to come up with a better source, just like all the plastic and all that stuff, the plastic islands that are floating around out in our oceans, we haven't gotten a good answer for all that kinda stuff, but.

[Speaker F]: So I had a question.

[unintelligible]

[Thomas Edds]: Well there are environments that there's a situation that was built on the other side of Red Oak, California, and Phoenix has done a lot of that where a community, a HOA has built their own power plants like at a at a park. I'm involved right now with – the biggest thing right now is we've gotten solar panels, the modules and the inverters, working really really well, the next thing is actually batteries, how to store that electricity during the day. I can't say a brand that has a symbol that begins with the first letter of my name, they are very good marketers, they're fantastic marketers, and their cars are really pretty good. But their batteries have no place being in your home. They will catch on fire.

[Speaker G]: Expensive, too.

[Thomas Edds]: Yeah, well they – the battery systems won't really ever pay for themselves like the solar will. But we can actually reduce the amount of solar put on your house if you back feed what what you were putting back out on the grid, if you back feed it into a battery and then at night use it off that battery, or you know we just had that tornado come through and a lot of people didn't have power and everything. If you had a battery system then you you have your own emergency power. I tell everybody when they start talking about batteries, I just said well, it's like this. I can do enough battery power at a cost that you'll like if you wanna go camping whenever you lose power. But if you want your whole house, you know, there's a three story house hanging off the cliff in in – on Lake Grapevine, his battery room's bigger than this room you know, and we had to pour a 16 inch slab just to hold all the weight. But you know, if you got enough money to throw it away, I'll spend it any way you want me to, but –

[Speaker E]: Batteries are expensive

[unintelligible]

[Thomas Edds]: Right, but yeah, the Sonnen battery is a German company, German engineered company, they have a lithium battery. There's always another product that's mixed in with lithium to actually make it store electricity. The ones with the single digit name company, the the product that they mix it with is very very flammable. The ones that Sonnen uses, it's not flammable, you can cut it in half with a hacksaw. It's it was such a good company that Shell Oil just bought it, so and Shell Oil is trying to push all that stuff. There's a 600 unit apartment complex that is on plans for the city of Dallas, and we are gonna put a Sonnen battery system in each and every one of those just to start creating, we're gonna put enough solar so they will be 100% sustainable within their walls.

[Speaker H]: Before you wrap up Thomas, we're almost – time's almost up – would you address the solar tax credits and how that's gonna change –

[Thomas Edds]: Okay, the the tax credits this year ends, the 30% tax credit. Whatever we do for you to put solar up, if we build you a pergola and put the solar up, the structure that's holding the solar up, everything is 30% tax deductible. If you need a new roof, we'll put the new roof on, that's 30% tax deductible. If you want a carport, we can build you a pergola big enough to put your car under but you can't call it a carport, it's 30% tax deductible. It's all in the way you word things.

[Speaker H]:

[unintelligible] in 2020.

[Thomas Edds]: Yeah, and next year it goes from 30% down to 26%, and then each year after there it will reduce until you don't have any more credits.

[Speaker I]: That's something I've been

[unintelligible] you don't get those tax credits, are there any other incentives that you can get out of them

[unintelligible]

[Thomas Edds]: There is, PACE is a program that actually finances stuff like this and all, so there is incentives through them.

[Speaker H]: And there's a

[unintelligible] PACE.

[Thomas Edds]: Yeah, in the city of Garland, we're not – Dallas is, Garland is not yet. We haven't – they they won't incorporate a new city until there's a project that they deem is is financeable and everything. Yeah, your homes are – any kind of your tax deduction for your home or your business is, like I said, cities kinda have problems with that.

[Speaker J]: You talked about the newer technology is going from 600 to 1,000 to 1,500. Are they any smaller footprints? So that, let's say you have a roof that gets really good sunlight for two thirds of it, but not the other third. Are the newer technologies making smaller footprints at all?

[Thomas Edds]: Well the the voltage is not, that that doesn't really have anything to do with the footprint, but every year, if you come over to my booth over there in building C, I got a module sitting up over there. That was last year's module, I think it was a 310 watt. Every two months it's going up another 5 to 10 watts, the same size module. We're putting up 400 watts right now, less than two years. I mean so when I started out 19 years ago, we were putting 90 watt modules we thought were huge, you know, and like I said, we're doing the LG400s right now. You can – almost any module out there on the market, the top tier modules are are within a hare difference of each other. They're SunPower, I do install SunPower, I'm a SunPower dealer. They claim that they're the most efficient one out there, well the three times price that it costs you for those, add one more module and you got more power than the other ones would produce. So you know, it's kind of like if if you have to buy that Cadillac instead of a Chevrolet, you know, go with the SunPower or the big first letter company. But other than that, they're they're so close in competition with all that kinda stuff.

[Speaker K]: There are some stories out there that the solar panels create a magnetic field that is harmful to people's health. What do you know about that?

[Thomas Edds]: Well, I have never heard this story, but I know there's all that kinda stuff –

[Speaker K]: There's some things on the internet –

[Thomas Edds]: Yeah, it's just like just like people think that their power company's meter is – and I can't – yeah, killing them through just the meter itself, it didn't have anything to do with electricity. As far as electricity goes, I've been an electrician all my life, did power company substations and everything, and there's always there's always something that's gonna kill somebody, you know. So I never thought that people would be allergic to to to apples or peanuts, you know, but you know, yeah. So there's always gonna be something that's gonna kill you, one way or the other. We're – the only thing I wanna say about the sustainability, the solar is great and everything, one thing I always like to leave with everybody, I'm not really a treehugger but I am for anything that works. I love trees, I love – put me in the mountains, I love it, but taking care of our world is one thing that I really push, and also taking care of each other. I'm a volunteer chaplain for the state of Texas prison system, I work with guys five to six years before they get out, and when they do get out, I do offer them a lot of assistance. We give them clothes, the state gives them one pair of clothes that doesn't match to go out and have interviews on and everything and $50 to go somewhere. We support them a lot through different programs that we we're associated with, and you're homeless. I wasn't always – we are the #1 solar subcontractor in the state of Texas, I was actually homeless for three years, and there was a pastor that drug me out of the streets and drug me back in the church, and then I had the drug problem of getting drug back into church, and that's been 35 years ago. This is my second company that I've started and and doing well, and it gives somebody a helping hand, that's all we ask. We can be sustainable for everything in our life, but the biggest thing you wanna do is be sustainable to your brothers and sisters. Thank you.


Dallas Climate Action

The Mayor committed the City of Dallas towards meeting the goals of the 2017 Paris Climate Accord, which entails zero emissions by the year 2050 (among other things).

Dallas Climate Action Video Transcript

[Speaker A]: Thank you for coming today, thank you Eastfield for hosting this fabulous symposium. I came last year and was knocked out by all the speakers they had that had so much great information, so I got brave and signed up this year. So what I hope to do is share some lessons learned, I don't have answers, it's things that we're working on as we develop our climate plan. So a little bit of background on how we got here, some of the primary impacts of climate in Dallas, a little bit of status on where we are on our climate planning effort, and probably the big theme of this presentation is on the role of equity inclusion in our climate planning, and actually across the board on our planning in the city of Dallas right now. So most of you guys already know this, we're one of the fastest growing cities, we're generally mostly white collar, there's some industry but it's only about 8% overall of our business, heavy into technology and financial services right now, we're on all kinds of top ten lists, which we're proud of I guess, we we are a member of the Climate Mayors, we are one of 434 mayors across the United States that have signed onto meeting the goals of the Paris Climate Accord. Our current mayor has re-upped that, Mayor Rawlings signed back in 2017, Mayor Johnson, three days into the office, attended their meeting in Hawaii, presented, he's working with maybe Mayor Turner from Houston on the transportation committee of that group. So we have been coordinating on almost a monthly basis with other mayors across the country that are also doing climate planning. So why are we looking at equity in Dallas? If you go to the first floor lobby in City Hall, there is a giant traveling exhibition on the history of redlining, and particularly the history of redlining in Dallas. We have a current council and city manager focus on both social and environmental justice around in particular that issue. This was in a September article about our exceptional segregation that unfortunately holds true to today. So we need to focus on equity for a multitude of reasons. One of the big ones is this comes out of the National Climate Assessment, the fourth edition that was put out in November 2018. All of the data across the world actually shows that unfortunately, the communities that are most impacted by by climate change are those that have the least wherewithal to deal with it, so communities of color, elders, children, lower income communities and combinations thereof. This is a little bit hard to read but it's a really interesting and I think important slide. So it tracks from root causes, segregation, poverty, income inequality, to social factors, the ability to afford basic necessities, access to green space, access to affordable healthcare, social factors, biological factors, age, chronic acute illnesses, mental and physical disabilities and overall health status. What that leads to an increased sensitivity to climate change, so the more you know the more things here that apply to you, the more sensitivity you're gonna have to climate change. So we have right now a citywide focus on equity, we have what they call a council manager government where we have a city council that forms policy, we have a city manager who is the point person on a day to day basis for getting stuff done, we've got over 30 departments, we have a new office this year, an office of equity and inclusion, they have provided citywide equity training. When they say equity, it's primarily focused on racial equity. To some degree social equity, but the big focus in Dallas, because of the history of redlining, is on racial equity, and we are one of those. We're the – we got combined, four different offices, a year ago. We have a director, I'm actually the assistant director, and four primary service areas, EMS and compliance, we help our other city departments towards EMS is an environmental management system, we are certified under the International Standards Organization, 14001 certification, we have I believe 22 departments that are certified under that which means we do both internal and external audits of our operations to kinda verify that we are being compliant, we are being environmentally friendly. Conservation and out – management and outreach is relatively new, air and soil management and stormwater management, and so you can see that we've got basically all environmental media, we've got the outreach, outreaching on all environmental media, and the EMS and compliance is really kind of an in reach function where we work with other city departments, keep them up to speed on the regulations, keep them up to speed on compliance. So as I said, we mish-mashed a bunch of groups together, the top line are the ones that were legacy in the office of environmental equality that was formed back in 2004, last October we merged the spill response and stormwater groups together, we added sustainability and community engagement to cover those outreach and in reach efforts, we added water conservation from our Dallas water utilities and we added the zero waste program from our sanitation group. So this is just a quick synopsis of what all we did in 2018, we're in the process of pulling similar data together for 2019. During the period of 2018 we added three new services. We, in January, were asked to do a comprehensive environmental and climate – climate action plan, affectionately known as CECAP for short. We were also given a fabulous man and told to start an urban agriculture program, which is great, because food access and actually local food supply is a big deal in this part of the country, and then just two months ago we had an external non-governmental organization, the Texas Trees Foundation came to us and said, you know, y'all have this urban heat island effect, we have some funding to help you pull together an urban forest master plan. Can y'all put some skin in the game and give us some people at the city and the different affected departments to work with? And so we now have an urban forest management program as well. People are still in a bunch of different departments, but so we're kind of excited about that, it makes us a more full service department. So primary focus on this talk is gonna be kind of our equity relative to outreach and engagement. As I said, we added four new services, each one of those services that we added last year had their own independent outreach group and they were so proud of the work they did, and we had to somehow merge the cultures from those other former departments and merge the messages, and so I spoke with the guy that was heading up our outreach group at the time, I said guys, we need an outreach plan. We can't be cross-messaging, we have great messages but we can't cross-message, and we've got some new stuff that we really need some help with. So he said yeah, great, yeah, so he came back about a month later and he's a very – he's now at the zoo in San Antonio, he's very studious, he is very conscientious, and so when I told him I needed an outreach plan, he immediately went and researched outreach plans and engagement plans and how do you best engage, and so we started looking at best practices towards public engagement and it's conversations, debates, that sort of thing. So some of the things he found is that if we're doing our job there's more public trust, confidence, we have better informed and better engaged residents, when we have a meeting, people actually come, and we have I think better and better conversations, better level of effort between the city and the neighborhoods that they serve. So he developed an outreach and engagement guidance tool for us that was fabulous, and the reason I say it's fabulous is we ended up being ahead of our equity office. I love being ahead of the 4th floor. So we started looking at you know, what are the strategic considerations? Why are you talking to these people? Do you – you know, what do we do we know the focus area, do we need to bring in partners to help, what is the level of the – what's the audience, who are we talking to, what is their level of understanding? Are we talking to Ph.D's, are we talking to high school kids, some place in between? So and what questions should we anticipate? What are we trying to achieve? If we're going out to the community and we do all the talking, then we don't really hear what the community has to say. And then the other thing is, how will our decisions affect the community? And so he developed a very fancy spreadsheet to go through for every single one of our engagements as the purpose of this. So in the level of engagement, what are we what are we promising? Inform, are we just letting people know what we're up to, are we consulting, are we asking questions, are we taking good notes, are we trying to figure out if there are some similarities or differences in how the different neighborhoods across the city are responding to the same question? And so that's pretty important. The other is, how are we involving the neighbors in what we do? Are there opportunities for not just telling us what they want, for them to take part in? And then the other is, how do we share in decision making? And this one's maybe a little bit challenging in a city setting mainly because as a staff member, I don't make decisions. I can provide suggestions to both the 4th floor and the 5th floor; at the end of the day, it is council and the mayor that set that policy, and I can provide information to to help them with those decisions. Likewise, I fully understand that my community's gonna be on the 4th and 5th floor too, and so I gain trust if I can convey what they're saying to those folks before they hear it from the neighbors. They'll say yeah, the department mentioned you were concerned about that. The other is, what where all are we going, and then how do we close the engagement loop? After we've spoken with folks, after we've listened with folks, how do we let them know that they've been heard? How do we feed back, we heard XYZ, we're moving on recommendations on X and Y, Z we can't do yet 'cause we don't have funding. So how do we close this loop? And then finally, kinda who's affected and how. So we also developed some I guess matrices on the inform, consult, involve, collaborate and empower. Again, this empower is challenging in a city realm, that's a that's a council function. Do they put it out for a vote? And then we'll implement what you decide, so this is, here's the inputs, here's how we feed back, and this is pretty consistent with national best practices. So one of the things that we look at when we started planning our engagement using an equity lens, and even our city manager's office, I will say, had some differences between equality and equity. Equality is giving everybody the same thing, it's kind of like when you've got siblings fighting, you each give them the same thing, where equity is you give them what they need to to meet the needs that they've got at that particular time and location. I will say our 2017 bond program, we did equivalent little dollars per council district, regardless of need, and I know that there were some council members in our north Dallas that said, I don't need drainage, I need sidewalks, or I need alleys or I need paving, but but they were held to this. So it's kind of interesting that we've come around now to truly looking at equity and what do the different areas really need. So one of the things that we looked at are what are barriers to engagement? And we held two series of six public meetings each for climate plan, we very strategically put them in neighborhoods where we knew there should be a voice into the plan. The first meeting I think had two neighbors and a whole bunch of consultants and city staff, which was very disheartening, and so we went back and refigured, called some of the folks in the neighborhood for the next meeting. But then the other thing we noticed is there was something that I call the ICE effect, which is there are some communities that don't wanna go to government sponsored meetings because they never know who else might be there, even though they may have very strong concerns. So we revamped so that we were doing online meetings that were recorded, so someone can go back and do it at their time, we did meeting in a box where anybody could download the meeting and hold it in a safe place, in their neighborhood, at their church, wherever. The other thing we found out is we do have neighbors that have an elderly population. They physically couldn't get to our public meetings, and so we offer drives. So it's like, call by 5:00 and we'll get you there. I think we had one lady that took us up on that. So and then the other thing is, we got, on the first round, some 3,200 plus responses, that was my summer read, and that is another concern. Some people think that the city is going through an exercise to check the box, they did it, and are you really going to use what the community tells you towards the ultimate solution? And the answer is yes, because we did not go in with a preconceived plan, we still don't have a plan, we're pulling it together from a combination of the two public outreach efforts we did, actually we made our consultant look at some 20 plans and 400 actions that we're already doing towards climate change, and we're benchmarking a little bit against other cities. Doesn't mean we're copying somebody's plan, 'cause there's some that we looked at and were like no, we're not gonna do that, that's not gonna fly in Dallas, for political or other reasons. So we are doing that. The other thing that we have done is we did more online engagement, there is a fabulous tool to use for meetings, which unfortunately I didn't incorporate it, it's Poll EV and it is software that you can download and then you can access a poll by phone and you can get real time feedback. In several of the meetings we did, we did that at the beginning of the meeting to figure out where people were hearing about the meetings. 90% was from online, and that was echoed with the survey response too that showed the same thing. So we beefed up our online presence, we did translate all of our material, we had it done professionally. I will tell you that we have since had some feedback from a guy from Peru that it wasn't proper Spanish, and a guy from west Dallas that also told us it wasn't proper Spanish, but for two different concerns. So it's one of those go figure –

[Speaker B]:

[unintelligible]

[Speaker A]: Poll, P O L L, and then EV, like everywhere. Yeah, it's very very fun. When somebody goes oh, we're gonna do a poll, I'm like oh boy, get out my phone, and we know that we're not reaching the same audience on the same channels, and that's pretty much by design. We know that most of our younger respondents are doing the online, they're doing it on their phone, they did – that's primarily that. In some of our neighborhoods, some of the churches we went to, they wanted paper 'cause they just couldn't deal with the computer thing, and that's okay. We input it for them and I think it was pretty helpful. So then we get into equity and the climate planning process. As you know, in in Dallas we've had a couple recent examples of why we're worried about climate in this part of the country. We are getting more virulent swings between drought and flood, we we do have air quality challenges. I just put solar on my house, so I don't have increased energy costs, but not everyone can do that, and so those that are not are seeing higher bills, and so if we look at an area that is in energy poverty, increasing those bills even more so is problematic. We also have potential for disaster displacement. One of the other things that we got a real good lesson on on that October tornado is, we have a very well developed all hazards plan that was done in accordance with the Emergency Management Institute and FEMA and blah blah blah and it stretches in three ring binders across the bottom of a wall about like that. So the closest community center for shelter was Walnut Hill, that literally got blown out. So then they needed – the the next one is Bachman rec center, which is really lovely, but it's in a flood plain and has two walls of glass and there were more tornadoes coming. Unfortunately that was the closest one, and even then, the week before, our parks director had retired and they couldn't find the manager of that facility so they ended up waking him up at like 2:00 in the morning to go get it open. So so we learned that we have some opportunities for resiliency or enhancing resiliency in our own disaster planning. So here's one place that we get a lot of feedback from a lot of places that we need to make an economic argument for climate change, it's not just about trees, and so we used some of the data that my friends at the Weather Service provide. Dallas, this is for 1980 through 2018, at that point Dallas was leading – or not Dallas, but Texas was leading in the country in 94 different billion dollar plus incidents. We lead in every single one of the categories that NOAA counts, including freeze because we have our ice events. Additionally, they've done some trending. So you can see that back in 1980, yeah, we had some storms, not too many, not too horrible. Here's where we are now, in particular the last three years, we've had between $300 and $400 billion in weather related disasters. The preliminary estimates on the Dallas tornadoes are $2 billion plus, so it's another one, and I suspect between our June system and – which was straight line winds – and our October storm, and we did have a few floods in between, that it's gonna be another pretty pretty significant year on this chart. So we're spending – I originally had done a very simple average of $2.5 billion a year for the country, it's not that. Right now it's between $300 and $400 billion a year, and since we're leading the country, a big chunk of that's gonna be right here. So that's where we're saying we need to be spending some money towards prevention and towards basically future proofing our community a little bit. So as I said, Mayor Johnson came on board, he gave this to us two weeks ago, he said I want to send this everywhere, put it on your website, he has since written C40 which is an international organization of cities that do climate planning together and have access to funding to help with it and he's trying to get us into that organization which I wholeheartedly support 'cause I think it would be helpful. You will notice, he's pushing common sense, data driven solutions, so the plan that we're doing is not gonna – and everybody, including our council committee, has said, don't give us a pretty plan that sits on the shelf, give us a plan with metrics and give us a way for us to be able to see how you're doing towards meeting those metrics. So back in January we had a climate change resolution, there again, effective and equitable plan. They also at the time supported a federal solution which is a carbon cap in trade – or cap fee – carbon fee dividend, fee and dividend, there we go. And then this is the C40 piece that we're working on right now. So the the basis for everything we're doing in this climate plan is that equity piece. It doesn't do any good to add a bunch of trees in an area that's maybe doesn't need them. So one of the other things that we're looking at is disproportionate impacts. The darker red, the higher percent of poverty, and Jacqueline Patterson, who's with the NAACP environmental climate justice program, changes all or affects all, but not all people are affected equally. And that's consistent with the information from the National Climate Assessment. So this is – my X got a little screwy here, but this is also really interesting. This is development patterns in Dallas by race, and there's a pretty clear X, and so that first article about our segregation is pretty holds pretty true. The other thing we're looking at is the first one, this is that poverty map. This one is commute and this is a commute of less than 30 minutes to your job, and so we've got obviously the transportation sector in our climate plan has some significant places where we can and should be looking to provide an equitable solution, and then last but not least – and this echoes that last map – we've got a fairly well consolidated African American community. I I like the previous map better because it also shows the the other areas of Dallas where we've got basically disaggregated racial impact potentially. So building relationships, building trust is the key. If you can't get people to come tell you what they really think, what they really really think, you're not gonna get very far. I love this photo, this is at a park that the Trust for Public Land is planning near South Oak Cliff high school. In working with the Trust for Public Land, I kept saying Molly, how are you getting 200 people at your events? She goes oh, well I go to PTA, I go to church, I go for Oak Cliff and stay there, and so when she holds an event, 200 or 300 people show up, it's fabulous. We're working towards that, we have shifted our outreach hours so that they are working Saturdays for that very purpose, so that we can start attending the local meetings, get to know folks. For our CCAP, what we did is we had some folks from Joppee, we had some folks with the Dallas Sierra Club, the Environmental Justice Network, that were calling us pretty regularly, and so we said okay, who all would you say needs to be on our stakeholder list? And then we spoke with – even though they're in Arlington, we spoke with UTA, we actually spoke with Georgeann Moss and Laurie De La Cruz here at the community college as well and said, who all do you think we need to have on our committee? And then we spoke with EarthX because Trammell Crow is, while he's a very green person, he's also very well tied in politically with our business community, and we took those three lists and as I said, we've been talking with the other cities around Texas to kind of find out how they're doing, what do they do right, what do they do wrong, what would they do differently? And San Antonio just recently put their climate plan out, they had seven different committees in seven different focus areas in English and Spanish. So three guesses what advice they gave us. Don't do too many meetings, and the other thing is, make sure that you have everybody in the room at the same time. The other advice we got from Austin was, when we had 250 people on our stakeholders committee, our meetings were all day long and awful. Don't have too many people. And so we had to kinda hone it down from the 250 to 300 people that would be fabulous to have at the table, down to a smaller subset, and we talked to them and said hey, can you just make sure that your people that you coordinate with are informed and know what's going on with the plan? And they were like yeah, we can do that, and we said we won't meeting you to death, we've got – if you can give us four or five good meetings, we're good. And so that's what we did, our stakeholder committee has folks – I don't know if we have the slide on that or not, no we don't – we've got environmental advocates, we have social and racial justice advocates, we have folks from both the hospital districts and academia, we've got business. Yes, we have people from airlines, yes, we have people from an oil company that is in downtown Dallas on our committee. They are a stakeholder in what we do, they also have the full ability to blow us out of the water if they're not at that table, and so I'm I'm saying this because we've gotten some flack by having business people, and it's like no, they need to hear what you're saying. So, so we've got a pretty good group. Our approach has been – and that's why we had the two different – so our approach has been to go from understanding the challenges and current actions, that was kind of our first round, defining the vision for the future came out of the feedback, those 3,300 some odd comments. That's how we got the vision, we coalesced and said okay, what common things are people telling us? We're in the process right now, we have a survey that ended yesterday, on defining community based solutions. That's why I tell you – I will tell you, we don't have a plan. We're waiting to see what the community tells us. We did get some feedback that we needed to hold it open another week, we did that, but we also have to get it to council before April, so. So we did that, and then once we have the community based solutions, then we'll be working to develop a pathway towards implementation, and you will see that we've got – this should probably be extended clear over here – we do have – and I'm very excited by it – Mayor Johnson took three months to do his committees, but he's given us our own committee. So we have our own committee, they will be in the lead on here. In my opinion, it's a great committee, they've got someone from west Dallas, they've got representation of south Dallas, they've got representation of the what I would call the fiscally contingent group that don't like us spending tax dollars on anything other than police and fire. So it – and we've had some good conversations with them thus far, so I feel confident that it will be a balanced approach, that they're not gonna let us get too crazy either way. The other thing that is really good is that we meet with them once a month – yeah.

[Speaker C]: Are these stakeholders, or the representative from each group, are they self selected or –

[Speaker A]: No, they were nominated, they were nominated by – again, the lady from UTA that we worked with formerly did sustainability in our department at the city, and so we knew that she knew our kind of how we did that and she was also – she's very well tied in academically with other folks that are working in sustainability and and so they were nominated and we we took kind of a group of people and we we met with those three people, we met with also Rita Beving, who's active in Public Citizen, nominated a bunch – in fact she was pretty active on nominating folks in the worlds of housing, advocacy, both environmental and social, some some of that world. So it was kind of a by committee, and then some of them really didn't want to do it and that's okay.

[Speaker D]: So I'm wondering, you talked about folks who don't want to spend on anything but police and fire. How do you pull them in –

[Speaker A]: Well it gets it gets into the – well I actually have another slide that's really scary that I didn't show you, because it's Ph.D level economics. The Federal Reserve Bank just put out a study, a white paper, on impacts of climate change on the gross domestic product, and they're estimating best case, everybody gets on board with Paris, about a 2% drop in GDP by 2100. Under worst case, it's 14.5% drop, so there are potential economic – and and I am not a Ph.D economist, I mean it had all the sigmas and the partial differentials, they did it right. So I have that too, so we give them that, we give them what we're spending right now. Every time we get a storm like we just had, we're like, what do you know, that climate change thing, what do you know. So we make that argument. The other thing that we make is – I forgot where I was going with this – basically there is an economic argument in and of itself. The other thing is, and it gets into the equity and inclusion and engagement elements, current community philosophy is, the more time a city spends in a neighborhood making people happy so they're not annoyed 'cause they can't get to their job and they're not annoyed 'cause they can't get reasonable food and they're not worried because their kid has asthma and they can't get them to a clinic, the more that we can take care of those minor annoyances, the less time and less I guess the less people that are in that situation, are totally irritated with the government for putting them in that situation, and so to some degree it's community policing. Kind of a novel thought, take care of the community, maybe you don't need as many police. So so that's that's kind of the argument, and I think if you would talk to the police and fire chiefs they would probably agree. We now have some some groups within police and fire that are led by psychologists and it's because they want – when it is a call where it's apparent that there are mental health challenges or issues and it's beyond straight crime, they they try to address that root cause, and so cities more and more are focusing on equity and inclusion and engagement because of that. We can't – we spend 60% of our budget on police and fire right now and they do a fabulous job, I'm not gonna say anything bad about them, but that's a lot of money, and if we could divert that to do other things, it'd be great, so. This is kind of an overview of what we did. We did the two sets of community meetings, we had six in each. I will tell you that we did about 100 additional meetings just at community request, so we went everywhere from council district 3's leadership meeting, Saturday mornings to 4 Oak Cliff, to the North Texas Eco-Socialists, to the Unitarians, to the Real Estate Council, you name it, we've been there simply talking to people, getting what they're worried about, what they are comfortable with us doing or not doing, and one of the things that I'll share – and I was talking about this a little bit with Flora that was earlier – after that first meeting, when we had two people show up, we had some tough love from a group of our stakeholders that pulled in the folks that were doing social engagement for EarthX. They're professionals, and they basically told us very gently that our online presence sucked and that our social media program sucked and that we needed to up our game, and – and this is actually something we heard from some of the neighborhood too – climate action in and of itself doesn't necessarily resonate with everyone, and and we had a lady at Juanita Craft tell us this. They're like, well when they told me it was climate, I didn't wanna come 'cause I don't care about that. I care about food and – and she goes, you're talking about all the stuff I care about, and so we revamped some of our social media to kinda fit that, and so we've got – if you recognize it, that is in south Dallas – so we we kinda were trying to play more on – and this is these are kinda dark, you're not gonna be able to see them very well – and I will tell you that we didn't have a professional graphics artist do this. We have a climate coordinator who went to a historically black college for undergraduate, went to Scripps, basically for climate for her master's. This is my director's children, and she pulled together – she got the themes and pulled it together. I think that's one of her coworkers at Oddfellows. So we we were trying to make our social media message be closer to things that people are worried about rather than climate action, it it's the because piece, and it was I think probably much more effective. Our planning approach, this is – most cities are doing straight climate action, they're focusing on that. Their development plan is another plan altogether and their environmental planners are – who knows what happens with that, they don't really focus. One of the things we found is when I was first on the job, the first week on the job, I got a call from our comptroller, and she was panicked 'cause Moody's, who is who writes our bond writing, this is another one of the financials, wanted to know not if we were doing anything but what we were doing to address climate – to address the risk associated with climate change, and Mindy's nodding her head, she's had a similar phone call. So and it wasn't that they were trying to sell green bonds, they were really wanting to know what we were doing to assess risk and the risk of their investment in the city due to climate. So because of that, I did about 10, 20 phone calls to departments I thought might be doing stuff, that's how we rounded up the 20 plans, because everybody was kinda doing the right thing on their own for probably business reasons. They were trying to make better use of our tax dollars, in particular the water plant put cogeneration on their sludge digester, and so about 50% of the power for – and it's a 298 million gallon per day plant, it's huge, it's a regional plant – half the power for it comes off its sludge. And so they were doing these things independently that together are like, oh wow, we're doing a lot of good stuff, but that's another thing is that our – and it's not just Moody's, the private lenders are also doing that, the venture capital folks are also looking at it. So there there's a financial thing there too. But in pulling all those plans together, we realized that it would be really helpful to have everything under one roof, even though say for instance, the transportation department's gonna be working on the transportation piece, we kinda want it in under one roof. So we're using a combination of mitigation, which is things to reduce emissions, adaptation, that's my beefing up Bachman and not sending people to a glass building in a tornado, flood protection, the city has $1.7 billion in unmet needs for drainage, that bond program I talked about, they gave each council district $2.5 million regardless of need, and one district in particular has a bulk of that $1.6. Guess where, it's right next to the river, it's right where – hmm, what do you know, we've got a high minority population. So there's there's stuff like that that we need to do so that when we get these big storms, it's not as bad. The other thing is, is we've got an urban forest, both within the city and south and east of the city. We need to protect those resources, those resources sequester carbon, they help with urban heat island, they help mitigate our hydrologic response, that's one of the reasons we're looking at an urban forest plan. We need to preserve and protect our water source and provide the storage so that we can go between drought and major flood easily without significant impacts. I will say that Dallas Water Utilities does do a pretty good job of looking forward. They've been including climate statistics in their projections as part of their planning for several years now. The other thing that we have started looking at pretty carefully is local food production and food access. We have documented food deserts, guess where. Actually I live in one, so – but there's some other things that have come up that make this a little more critical. In 2015, Arne Winguth with UTA did a study of infrastructure and came to note – and he looked at airports, rail and roads under a future climate scenario, under best case, worst case – and he wrote about 100 page paper on it for COG, he's an academic, but basically at the end of the day, all the lines were red. We're looking at catastrophic transportation infrastructure. So most of our food does not come from a 250 mile radius of Dallas, it comes from the valley, comes from South America, comes from California, comes from all over. About a month into the job we had a big thing at council because the farmer's market was upset because we were trying to allow another farmer's market within a mile and they really didn't want the competition. So in trying to figure it out outside of the council chambers, we were asking a bunch of questions about, well why? What came out of it is we found out that the farmer's markets around Dallas all get their food from the same relatively local sources and they really didn't want the competition to raise their prices, and so what that tells us is that we have some opportunities to look at food supply, fairly large scale food supply, locally, and it's it's import – and this goes beyond community gardens. Community gardens are great, they're good for building community, the places where we need them you have people working two or three jobs or they're elderly or they're children. Those people aren't gonna be growing their own food and they're not gonna be growing enough to feed a whole neighborhood or a whole city, and so the other thing is, if you look at the expected temperature increase, with 40 to 60 more 100 degree plus days in 2100, it's down the road but that's the worst part of summer. Nothing's gonna be growing, unless it's like indoor in a temperature controlled facility. So we we're looking at that pretty heavily, we do have a food innovation challenge right now if you Google that in Dallas, our Office of Innovation is looking for ideas and it's a collective. I was I will tell you, this effort is a collective effort of about 15 to 20 different departments internal to the city, and we have non-profits outside the city that we're working with as well.

[Speaker E]: Have y'all looked into like Detroit

[unintelligible] in terms of urban agriculture?

[Speaker A]: No, right now our poster child for that is Atlanta with their AgLanta program, but –

[Speaker E]: They have more urban agriculture in Detroit than any city.

[Speaker A]: Really? Cool, I wonder if that's how they're using their old factories for that, probably. And we – that's something we're looking at, we're looking at strip malls, we're looking at some of the places where they formerly had manufacturing because that kind of a facility really – it's not as temperature controlled as we would like, but space wise it works. Here's our timeline, overall we're kind of in here where we just closed, the second series has kinda moved up a little bit and we're looking at meeting with our stakeholders, internal and external, first part of December. We are going to have to report and kinda what I'm anticipating is that our January and February meetings with our council committee will be deep dives where we invite the affected departments. For instance, if we're looking at the transportation sector, we get DART and we get our transportation department sitting there with us so that we don't come up with really cheerful ideas and we get an oh, no no no no, from them. So that's gonna be an interesting meeting, all eight of the areas that we're looking at will have a similar deep dive by the council committee. What we're hoping to do is towards probably the first part of February, have that draft ready for public review and input so that we can get comments in March and take it to council in April and reveal – reveal the plan. It shouldn't be any surprises if we've done our outreach and engagement right in April. So these are the goals that we got from our first round, one of the things we did on our second round is we had a series of meetings, the very first meeting somebody said, what about air? So that got – and and it's kinda interesting 'cause all of the the energy stuff, the transportation, everything that we're doing here helps improve air. What we're looking at is both working with TCQ for additional regulatory monitors and working in specific areas with non-regulatory air quality monitoring to kinda help provide the metric on these others. So that's – so we're looking at types of actions in the plan, mandates or ordinances, you have to do this. Our friends in the business community aren't real excited about that, they are excited more to – removing barriers to participation, which is rebates and incentives, and in the equity world that's what we're looking at, particularly as we look at some of our substandard housing stock. How do we help those folks get their get their facilities so that they're comfortable to live in and so that people aren't paying a huge piece of their salary just to stay warm or cold. And then one of the things that came out of the first batch, and actually to some degree what we're seeing on the second batch, is a need for more robust education. People say, we would do it if we just knew where to go, how do it, and so that's one of the things that we're looking at, beefing up that piece just to help get information, and certainly if we're doing rebates or incentives we would need information on how to get to those, so we're looking at that. This is the website where we've got pretty much everything we've done to date. The folks that are on the stakeholder committees are on that website, we've got recordings of the meetings, we've got the meeting notes and presentations, just about everything we can think of, some of the background information. If you really want to work on your insomnia, that white paper from the Dallas Fed is there and you can read it. It is extremely interesting in considering that they looked at all 10 formal business sectors and saw losses across all sectors, not just housing, not just transportation, was a little scary actually. So lessons learned, data's data's vital. We're learning that the more we communicate earlier in the process, the better. Our stakeholders, actually we haven't had too much trouble, but we are trying to get them more engaged. Realistically having a daytime meeting of 4 hours long is hard for some stakeholders, they have to take off work, and so we're not trying to do it too often and we're trying to make the best use of their time when we do that, and then this was one that we learned internally, equity versus equality. So we learned the ICE factor, we know that Jim Crow laws, we know that redlining, we know that that's been going on for years and years. We are not gonna probably do a very good job of that overnight, but it doesn't mean that we shouldn't at least try. So so we're having those conversations, we're trying to fix 50 to 100 years of bad policy without making more bad policy, and at the end of the day we're trying to make Dallas a better place to work. Thanks.


How to Recycle Right Video

Learn how to teach others to "recycle right" as a social justice practice which helps protect the health and safety of sanitation workers.

How to Recycle Right Video Transcript

[Tiana Lightfoot Svendsen]: Hello everyone, my name is Tiana Lightfoot Svendsen, or something like that, and I have the great privilege of working for the city of Garland, which is kind of like a modern day Mayberry, and for those of you who are super young and don't know what Mayberry is, think King Of The Hill. It's very friendly, it's very Texan, and we have over a quarter of a million people and we have a lot of residents who participate in our recycling program, and some do a better job than others so we're we're gonna address that today. Has anyone ever heard the name Echol Cole or Robert Walker? Sounds familiar? I have one, who are they? Just you're like yes, I know the names, okay. So February 1st, 1968, in Memphis, Tennessee, there was a torrential downpour, just crazy rain, and the sanitation workers who were all male, all black, requested to go home for the day, and the city of Memphis told them they could not do that, they had to continue working, and put things into perspective, a lot of our communities in north Texas have an automated side load truck which picks up the trash so there's not as much exposure. Like in Garland we have nice trucks that do a lot of the heavy lifting.

[Speaker A]: Now that wasn't the case –

[Tiana Lightfoot Svendsen]: That wasn't the case, right, and in Memphis that really wasn't the case and so a lot of the containers that the men were collecting had holes in them, and so when it was raining the trash and the rotten material would get on them and they'd go home at the end of the day and they'd have to shake out their pants and maggots would fall out of their pants, and so the working conditions were very poor. They were horrible, and the men were discriminated against and they were paid pennies on the dollar, just deplorable wages. And these two men, Echol Cole and Robert Walker, during the torrential downpour, took shelter in the back of a trash truck 'cause there was so much rain, and there was an equipment failure and the gentlemen were crushed to death in the back of the garbage truck, and so that's actually what sparked I Am Man in Memphis and over 1,300 sanitation workers went on strike, and that warranted the attention of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who then came in support of the sanitation workers, and Dr. King was actually shot fighting for the rights of sanitation workers, and so there's there's been a lot that has improved over time but there are still a lot of challenges that the men and women who collect your trash and recycling face, and so you're aware, it is the most dangerous city operation. So the people that collect your trash and recycling, there are two times the number of deaths than you see in police officers and four times the number of deaths than you see in firefighters, and so it is the most dangerous city operation. So if you take nothing else away from from our time together today aside from coloring outside the lines, I hope that that you remember when you see someone coming and collect your trash, just give them a friendly wave or a thumbs up, or one of our guys, somebody baked him a batch of cookies five years ago and he still talks about her like she's his best friend in the whole world. So just the small acts of kindness and that recognition, or if someone's doing a great job, feel free to report them to their boss, right, in the city, because that means so so much to the people that do the hardest, dirtiest work. So who can tell me, what what are recyclables? We have some ringers in the mix from various city governments here, so if we get stuck, but what are recyclables? Cardboard, cans, paper, okay. Those are all types of recyclables, but I want you to think about recyclables as raw materials, and these are raw materials that compete, right, as manufacturing feedstock with other raw materials. So only when we recycle correctly and recycle content replaces virgin content, we can enjoy all the economic and environmental benefits that recycling promises and delivers. So contamination, who knows what contamination is? Have you ever heard this word, this is an industry term.

[Speaker B]: Food waste on the materials that you're putting out –

[Tiana Lightfoot Svendsen]: Right, so that's a perfect example, so food waste. So a lot of the communities in north Texas have single stream recycling, which means you can throw everything in the bin together, right? So your glass – if some communities are exempt, a little asterisk right there with the glass – paper, cardboard, aluminum, teal, stem, a lot of different types of plastic. Well what happens to that paper and that cardboard if somebody throws a slice of pizza in the blue cart? It's contaminated, that's right, or a dirty diaper. So that degrades the value of that recyclable material and so it's not able to compete with virgin paper in the same way, so that's why it's so so important that we keep our recycling collection, our recycling streams clean, 'cause they're raw materials, okay? So clean recycling is better recycling. So you're likely familiar with this, but on a global scale, the National Sword in China scrap ban, so that happened in 2018 at the beginning, and we're still seeing the effects of that. A lot of communities are having to pay a lot more for our recycling because of the China ban. We're very fortunate in north Texas, we have a number of recycling processing facilities which will take our material and prepare it to be distributed. You can have a paper mill in Forney, TX, however, the communities that were sending material to China, because China's not taking anything anymore, that's putting pressure and it's it's making more competition here even in north Texas. So a lot of different types of materials were banned, and to put things in comparison why this ban was so important, is before – especially with paper or fiber and plastic – you could see that China was the recipient of a lot of that material, and the craziest thing to think about is, before the China ban, the number one thing we exported in the United States was our recycling. So we used to be known as as the country that made things, and now what do we make? We we essentially make trash, right, we make make things to be recycled. China stopped taking material as part of an environmental and public health stance, and so in the interest of time we'll move forward. As you can see, small children who are picking through the different types of plastic and the impact that that had on families. Okay? China's working on developing a circular economy, and just like with a number of things, when the price of oil is low, so is the value of recycling, and things that have happened with the trade wars, for instance, have further depressed the markets and put pressure. So on a national scale you can see a number of places that have had trouble with their recycling programs and they've either reduced what they're collecting or maybe they've put a pause on their program. Nowhere to my knowledge in north Texas is there yet, we're all doing our very best to preserve our programs. But clean recycling is better recycling, and that's where you come in and that's where you can help. Okay? So if we're able to reduce the contamination, the diabetic needles that we find in the recycling, things of that nature, then we're able to grow internal and external markets for the material, the material's worth more so it can be part of the circular economy, and it would incentivize new groups to create manufacturing facilities, which is already starting to happen. So even though we're not shipping material to China, there are Chinese groups who are investing in processing facilities here in the United States. Okay, so whenever people throw material in the recycling that shouldn't be there, there's a cost of disposal, right, 'cause it has to go to the landfill instead of being turned into a new item, the the value of the lost recyclables, and then labor. So a lot of our recycling facilities are highly technical and there's a lot of equipment, there's a reverse eddy current that pulls out the metals and there's machines blowing the paper to one end and and it's all a lot of robotics and machinery doing the work. However, with contamination, there are human beings that have to pick the dirty diaper and the plastic bag and the pair of pants out of that line, so there's a labor cost that's involved as well as a human health aspect. Okay, so when we think of tanglers, hoses, cords, clothes and plastic bags, plastic bags in particular may not weigh a lot but they're gonna be problematic. So anything you can wrap around your arm should not be placed in your recycling collection, and you're forgiven if you didn't know and you've been making mistakes, you're still a good person, okay, and we all love you, but plastic bags in particular, that's one of our top contaminants. Yes, Dr. Boccalandro?

[Dr. Boccalandro]: I don't know why in Coppell they say we can put plastic bags in there. Is the sticker wrong?

[Tiana Lightfoot Svendsen]: So so some communities have been taking them, however this is my personal recommendation is you always call the MRF, the recycling plant where it goes, to double check, and then my other beef with this is, you have this wonderful reusable bag right here, so instead of creating plastic bags continuously, yeah, go ahead and use your reusable bag and that way you don't even have to worry about it being an issue for the recycling plant or finding out is it recyclable or not. Okay? So in the state level, you can tell in north Texas we have a lot of recycling facilities, we're very fortunate, that are handling our material, and then for those of you that love money, want to know about that, there is a high value to the Texas economy. Over $3 billion in economic output because of recycling, so it's very very important to the state of Texas that we continue to recycle, okay? And to put things in perspective job wise, it's very comparable to broadcasting, pipeline transportation and paper manufacturing, so it's a big job creator as well, and I'm happy to share these slides in case your pictures aren't excellent. All right, so the average contamination rate in Texas is between 10% and 25%, and in Garland we're we're on par with that, which is problematic because when you think about, this is almost 25%, that means 1 out of every 4 item being put in recycling should not be there, and to give you a good visual of this, if you have a big truck that's carrying the recycling, 1 out of every 4 of those big trucks is filled with trash that someone is going to have to handpick out of a line and then we're gonna have to pay to send it to a different landfill. So it's costly and it's a health issue and so – and not picking on Garland, because a lot of places in Texas, Dallas has a similar contamination rate, are facing these same issues with educating our residents. Okay, so that's another economic value of recycling right there for data nerds. So when we're thinking about recycling, again we want to come back to what's within our scope of control, because our scope of concern is huge. We want to save the world, we want to be resilient, we're concerned about air quality and being in an ozone non-attainment area, we're concerned about transportation infrastructure, we're concerned about energy efficiency and water conservation. There are so many concerns, but when we're thinking about recycling, what's within our scope of control is what we're putting out for collection, and so everyone making sure they're putting acceptable materials out to be recycled is very very important, 'cause that's all we can control, right? We can't control what the president does with other countries or tariffs or trade wars or any of that, but we can control if we put a dirty, greasy pizza box in our recycling collection. Okay, so in Garland we have a drop off recycling center. We started off in the '90s with a blue bag curbside recycling program, then we moved to bins. This is probably one of my favorite stories about Garland, we were kind of hesitant with the bins. There was a Conoco gas station that caught on fire and it was next door to the fire department, and the fire department put it out so quickly that Conoco gifted the city a little money and they used that to buy the first batch of recycle bins, which is why for a very long time, we were the only place I assume in the whole world that had red recycling bins to honor Conoco gas station. And so since then we have moved to the 96 gallon roll cart Cascade brand collection which has been excellent, because that means that our drivers do not have to get out of the truck, because that's a safety issue when they do 'cause they're more likely to get hit by a car, right. But the downside is, as before with the bins, the driver would look inside and go, ope, wait a minute, that has a lot of plastic gloves in it, I'm not gonna pick it up, and they'd leave it behind. But now the first time they're seeing the recycling contamination is in the rear view mirror as they're emptying the cart into the back of the truck, so we're really really counting on our residents to make the best choices. So in addition to to our program for recycling, we own and operate our own landfill, so that that means it's even more important we put the right stuff in the blue cart because otherwise we're paying McCommas Bluff landfill in Dallas to take the trash out of the recycling, versus putting it in our own landfill and not charging ourselves for it. Those are our pretty blue carts. For communities that don't yet have blue carts or who need social media help, I highly recommend the recycling partnership, they have a ton of resources, and then this is an example of an audit. You can see the majority of material we recycle is paper, the next heaviest by weight is trash, and then after that, glass, which tends to have no or negative value, followed by cardboard and then plastic. So it's almost backwards, the materials that have the most value we recycle the least of, so we have some work to do there with the capture rate and the types of material we're encouraging people to recycle. Okay, so here's some examples of some common contaminants we see in our carts. Yard waste, food, electric devices, dryer lint, air filters – a lot of friends think those are recyclable, they are not, they go in the trash – lightbulbs, paint and motor oil, which are especially concerning 'cause of course, our staff members are paid a lot more than the gentlemen who work in Memphis, but I I've had occasions where gentlemen will come in and they're covered in paint because they didn't know what was in a pile or it compacts in the truck and then they're exposed to that material. So for their safety, please never ever put paint or any sort of hazardous chemical in either your trash or your recycling cart. You can see some wood right there, wood is another common contaminant, textiles, so things like pants and bags, we get a lot of seasonal contamination, so I feel like if I was in a coma for 20 years and then I woke up and someone took me to the recycling plant and I looked in the pile, I'd know what month it was based on what people are hiding in there, and so right now we're finally getting rid of all the Halloween masks and plastic buckets which shouldn't be in your recycle carts, and we're gonna start moving on to the Christmas lights very soon. Car bumpers, get a lot of those, and then used medical supplies, and that's especially concerning just from an infection control standpoint, right? An entire leaf blower, luggage, we talked about diapers, luggage is funny because I pulled this out of the cart and I put it on the carb and the lady's neighbor immediately ran out and grabbed it, she's like ooh, that's cute, and then you know, reuse happened in that moment which is great. Cigarette butts, another favorite, but the absolute worst was just a loose stool that someone placed gingerly on the top of their recyclable material, and so we we certainly don't want the people at the recycling plant exposed to – I hope it's a dog that created that waste, we just don't know.

[Speaker C]: This is now –

[unintelligible] – with garbage.

[Tiana Lightfoot Svendsen]: Right –

[Speaker C]: This is not all recycling, right?

[Tiana Lightfoot Svendsen]: Exactly, so this is an example of contamination. So the banana peel, contamination, plastic bag, the reason it's a problem when people bag their their recyclables is 'cause they're not gonna have time at the recycling plant to bust that open and shake out all the material, so if you're bagging your recyclables right now and your city has a cart, they're not able to get all that material and capture it. And of course the poo, anything good in there that the poo has touched is now not good to recycle. This is something else the recycle partnership has to offer with oops tags, those little love notes for people, as well as reminders of what to recycle. So these are some steps to assertive communication, and I want you to take a look at this real fast because we're gonna partner up and practice because then you'll feel more comfortable talking to people about recycling contamination, because it's not just about you and your behaviors, but we also wanna make sure that you're confronting people when they make poor choices. Okay, so clean recycling is better recycling, and I want to show you an example since someone asked about the Recycle Rangers.

[video playing]

[Speaker D]: Oh hey.

[Speaker E]: Did you just throw that can into the trash bin? You don't do that, grandpa.

[Speaker D]: Oh, sorry.

[Speaker E]: There's a recycle revolution going on. There is no way when we throw it away. If you toss it in the trash, it goes to the landfill. Recycling is a resource that can be collected and used again and again. Aluminum cans, plastic bottles, paper and cardboard should be recycled when we're done with them. When we recycle, we throw less away and save space in the landfill. This makes trash collection and the goods we buy less expensive. You'll also do your part to help protect the environment by saving our limited natural resources. Do your part, join the Recycle Rangers and help keep our city clean and green.

[Tiana Lightfoot Svendsen]: Yay, and just one more to make the Garlandites proud in the room.

[video playing]

[Speaker F]: Sorry everybody, these things gotta go. Batteries, I'm sure they're recyclable.

[unintelligible]

[Speaker F]: Ah, I guess not.

[unintelligible]

[Tiana Lightfoot Svendsen]: Perfect, and so please on Facebook follow Time To Recycle, and the hashtag is #knowwhattothrow because that affects everyone in the region, and batteries, we want to end on that note 'cause if there's just one thing you stop putting in the recycle bin, it's lithium ion batteries. Batteries is what caused the recycling plant in the Plano Richardson area to burn to the ground, we've had truck fires, the recycling center in Garland caught on fire and we were able to catch it in time so we didn't have a lot of structural damage which is quite fortunate. But again, going back to earlier in the presentation when we talked about the health and safety of the people who work in the sanitation department, and they should not have to put out fires. So thank you thank you thank you, I'll stick around for questions but I know we're out of time.


Comfortable Buildings Video

The evidence is in: Students learn better in buildings that provide better thermal comfort, better light, and better air quality.

Comfortable Buildings Video Transcript

[Z Smith]: So I'm Z Smith, I'm with Eskew Dumez Ripple, I made up an abstract. So our firm is a firm of about 50 people based in New Orleans, about 70% of our staff are LEED accredited, but only about 10% of our work is LEED, so we're trying to infuse what we do with sustainability whether or not there's certification involved. In 2014 our firm was honored with what they call the Firm Award, which is a way of singling out one practice each year that practices can look at. We are based in New Orleans but we work all over the country, we work for a lot of different universities from – I just got back from a project we're doing at Cornell, we opened a building recently at Georgia Tech that I'll show here, we've worked with some community colleges as well, and we do all kinds of different building types. So we have I guess a short attention span, so we work on performing arts buildings, research labs, office and conference centers, culinary programs, academic classrooms, dorms and student life projects, and our practice is I guess unusual that for a for a firm so small, we sponsor a research program within our firm. So we hire one or two full time people each year to kind of help investigate a research question that we wish we could force ourselves to do our homework on and so we make them do our homework for us and explain everything to us, so through that we've examined topics of building performance, resilience, community engagement, health in the built environment, the intersection between civil engineering and landscape architecture to improve our sustainability and resilience and make cities more fun. But a deep dive on building envelope technology, sound and vision and the perception of buildings, and then the theme this year is called deep impact paths to carbon zero, because all of the announcements say that we have to get to net zero carbon operation in about 10 years and we have to get to drastically or dramatically – dramatically is better than drastic – dramatically better or lower carbon footprint of construction, and so what our research fellows are doing this time is documenting 12 case studies of what it would take. There are some projects that are on track for doing that, there are others where you could run the numbers and say here's what it would've cost, here's the here's the least cost path to doing those things, and so we're gonna be sharing those results out through conferences and also guides you can download off our website. Our first case study right now is a project that's under construction, getting ready to open actually next – well, in November, end of November, and this is the first case study to come out of that work. This is a multi-family, very bare bones, Spartan, low cost affordable housing for intended largely for veterans and veterans with children. It's 50 apartments, one or two bedroom, it is going to be a net zero project and it will actually have the ability to island off the grid when the grid goes down, as it does with embarrassing frequency in New Orleans due to windstorms, and it was built for $164 a square foot, and so this is an example of the kind of work they're doing in terms of explaining that when you build the building, there's the kind of burp of carbon dioxide from when you made the concrete and when you made the steel and if you you know had to cut down the trees to make the wood and so on, and then there's the carbon emissions associated with running the building every year. So if a building is a typical building, this is a typical multi-family building as we build standard practice in the U.S. and then it uses electricity and gas and obviously there's emissions associated with that electricity and gas and therefore there's a little more carbon each year, a little more carbon, so the cumulative amount of carbon emissions is done through this and sort of signified by this carbon life cycle plot. The goal that's been established by the Architecture 2030 Organization is that they've set goals for basically about a 50% reduction or 40% reduction, you can see here, in the carbon emission of construction, and then net zero operation, and how they lay out a pathway to net zero operation is a mix of, you make a good, efficient building, and then you operate it right, and then that building might have some onsite renewables, might have some solar panels on the roof, let's say, for most climates, and then the rest – if there are still net emissions – their plan is that you can basically buy into schemes where renewable power is being produced offsite and they have a way of knowing it's really actually happening, kind of a way of buying producer notifications for that. So that's that middle line, that green line. This project actually has much lower carbon emissions of construction than standard multi-family and it's it's a net zero operation, so once it's been built the idea is that that's that's its life cycle carbon emissions for as long as the building stands, that's it, it's done, and so the time will tell as that building goes into operation, but we're pretty hopeful. This is an example of the kind of analysis of typical construction where there might be concrete floor slabs, very energy intense building envelopes, a brick or Alucobond or something like that, and then the interior finishes. Every choice we've made here, we've made for lower carbon construction, and of course the real question is what does that cost? And so this project was spec'd out to cost $153 a square foot just trying to do things sensibly, and then through a series of upgrades to the HVAC and to adding solar and then adding battery backup, we've taken it to $164, so this is a very competitive price target. So now obviously that offset is an offset you could apply to fancier projects, less Spartan ones, going forward. So that's just an example of what we're trying to do in our firm and what we're working with. There are a lot of great firms in this room that are trying to kind of pick up their responsibility and see if they can't improve their overall performance, and and there's – as architects, there's what we do when we design and then there's the rubber really hitting the road when the buildings are opened and operating. We have to work with facilities people who are the people who can have – you know, who can make or break whether a building will perform as we expected. So the American Institute of Architects has created this thing they call the 2030 commitment, and an architectural practitioner can sign up for it, and what it says is that you will basically write everything down, you will enter into a spreadsheet or onto an online database, every project you're working on that year and what building code you're building or energy code you're building it to or if you've done an energy model, what you think the projected energy will be, and it will add up the cumulative impact of all of your projects, and then they've set a set of goals where we aspire – I aspire to a full head of hair, I won't achieve that – but where you aspire to better and better performance every 5 years, the kind of bar gets raised. So in the gray bar here is the sum of all of the architecture firms that are signed up for this. Currently those firms that are signed up are responsible for 30% of all construction in the United States. So even though it's only about 250 firms reporting, it's all the big guys who are doing all the big buildings. The green bar is our own firm's tracking our own portfolio, and we chose – you're not required at all to make it public – we chose to disclose, chose to disclose, and back when we first started tracking, and then you know we were tracking behind but we were slowly inching up, and then as we kind of applied more and more and better tools we found that our portfolio got better and better, and so we've been sharing what we've learned from that. So this is all about design and this is about new buildings, major renovations, and even minor renovations where you're doing things like just lighting upgrades, you track it out. The other thing, though, that we think is important, is that you should report out how the building's really worked. So we get the utility bills for many of our projects, this one was built 20 years ago and we're still getting the bills for it, and the little yellow number is the total amount of energy, gas plus electric added together into BTUs per square foot per year, and we compare that with the bills for that building, and so you know some of the times we're really proud, it's significantly better than the average building that's out there. The government does – the Department of Energy does a big survey of the average energy use of these buildings, and you know it's sorted by building type, because laboratory buildings tend to use a lot more energy, schools more in the middle, single family homes and then finally apartments off in the the the lowest of common building types. The one building type that's even bigger than laboratories is fast food restaurants, because you've got all those deep fryers going in a small amount of area. But the energy use intensity – and sometimes we, you know, some of our projects actually use above the median, but we think it's important, that's how you know we're not fibbing, is that we even you know will show you a few of the firms that don't do as well as the average one. So that tracking of real performance and predicted performance is is we think an important way for architectural practices and clients working together to do better, but I want to back it up and actually say sometimes you forget what we're actually trying to get done. Why did we build these buildings in the first place, right? Well we want buildings to keep us comfortable, 'cause there's no sense having a really low energy building if no one wants to go in there, people hate it, and we want to provide a good environment for working and learning – especially almost all of you here involved in educational institutions – and we want to promote health rather than illness, and all at the same time we want those buildings to be affordable to build and operate and to maintain, we want them to be responsible with energy and water, and we want them to be future ready. We're doing a courthouse for the federal government in Mississippi and one of the interesting things is that – it's kinda buried deep in the regulations – is you're required when you design a building for the federal government now to actually map out, decade by decade for the next 80 years, how – what is the anticipated climate and how your building will be adaptable to that, and so for example, in Greenville, Mississippi where we're doing this courthouse, today on the typical year there are about 30 days a year when when the temperature's above 95 degrees. The current predictions, based on best available science, is that by the end of the century there will be 140 days a year above 95 degrees, and so you have to like say okay, what does that do to the duct sizing, what does that do to the cooling plant? And so on. So that notion of planning and resilience is kind of our responsibility, and those of you who are on the on the owner side specifying a building, it's in a sense irresponsible to not require your design team to tell you what the heck they're gonna do when these systems have to get changed out. So you know, have you provided enough area on the roof for the, you know, cooling cooling condensers that you're gonna need? But another thing that we should do is start talking about it when we – I'm gonna flip through these – talking about supporting – one of the things we need is thermal comfort. One of the really interesting things that's just come out in the last year or two is they finally started – it used to be that they would do when they did a lot of psychological and learning measurements to keep it to keep it easy and controlled, they would only use men as test subjects, and so we have all these curves about what qualifies as thermal comfort and so on, they're all based on men, particularly middle - college students, particularly in Iowa, that seems to be the hotbed of when a lot of this testing happened, and recently – this was a study, this happens to be with people in Berlin, a range of ages – but they tested, they did a whole bunch of tests on math, cognitive reasoning and verbal performance, and they scored it and this is the median score – of course there's a huge distribution, there's a huge spread, 'cause we're all different. Not all women are the same, not all men are the same, but they did notice that there's this particular shift which I noticed in my office and I don't know if you notice in yours, it's that on average women tend to report being colder, and it's not just that even at the same level of clothing, they'll report feeling colder than men, and if it's men in charge of the thermostat you can imagine what the impacts of this can be. So as we start to think about making good spaces for learning, 'cause this is this is an institution of learning, it's very clear that there is an impact on performance with temperature, and what's even more interesting is how do we provide, given that we're gonna have a room full of people, and not all women have the same point of comfort, not all men do. It's one of the interesting shifts that's happened, is people are starting to say that actually, they want you to plan not for a uniform temperature across the room but deliberately a variation in temperature so that people who are comfortable with it cooler and work best there can sit over there, and the people who are more comfortable with a little bit warmer can sit over there, and that's in contradiction to everything every engineer has ever been told they're supposed to do. They're supposed to achieve complete uniformity, in fact that's a measure of success for them. So the WELL building standard is starting to say, maybe let's look at non-uniformity. Light, there are a lot of good double blind peer reviewed studies now that show that daylight helps make you smarter, keeps you more alert. So for example, in a study of several hundred California schools, controlling for all other influences, they found that the students who had their classes in classrooms with the best quality of daylight progressed year over year 20% faster on math tests and 26% faster on reading tests, compared with the students who were in the the classrooms with the least. Similar one, office workers with good views performed on average 18% better than those with no views, and call center workers actually got through more calls, were able to successfully resolve calls faster. This was done this was done at Sacramento municipal utility, you call up to start your service, you call up to cancel your service, you call up to resolve a bill dispute, and they have 10 or 20, I don't know how many call centers they have, and they were just rented randomly, there was no big design to it. But this team of researchers came in and noticed how different call centers had different kind of productivity rates, and then they correlated that with the the physical environment in those different spaces, so it makes a difference. This is a really funny study, this is done in University of Oregon and they looked at the main student services building, and they had people, they just stopped passersby and they showed them pictures, they took pictures standing in front of the windows looking out, and so they assessed, they took kind of 10 representative views out of the building, and then they asked passersby, which view do you like, do you prefer, you know of A or B compared to C and D, compared E and F and so on, and from all that they get a rank ordered spectrum of the nicest views to the least appealing views, you know straight into the cooling tower or whatever it was that the worst view was, and then they anonymously got the health records and absentee records where they just were sorted by where those people sat and what view they had, and what they found was that the people with the worst daylight quality took on average 2 more sick days a year, and the people with the worst view took on average 1.4 more sick days a year. So these things that we think of as luxuries or amenities actually have – if you think how much a sick day costs a business, you know these have real financial impacts. But now I wanna talk about, since we're all talking about carbon dioxide and we're all talking about global warming and climate change, so we all know that right now – when I was born, nigh on 60 years ago, carbon dioxide levels outside were around 250 I think parts per million, passing 300. Now we're at about 410 parts per million, and you know when I was growing up I watched that Star Trek – you know there was in the keynote there was that talk about the original Star Trek and there was always like when the life support system shut down and the people were like, oxygen, I need oxygen, and yet the funny thing was with Apollo 13 a few years later, it wasn't that they were running out of oxygen, they had plenty of oxygen. What was happening was that when we inhale oxygen, we metabolize and we exhale carbon dioxide, which means the carbon dioxide level would normally go up. So rather than have – carry a greenhouse behind them on the spaceship, they had these special filters which just basically absorbed carbon dioxide, and their problem was that their filters that absorbed carbon dioxide, the system was broken or they didn't have enough of them, and so you remember that the great scene from the Apollo 13 movie where this guy says, we need to get – the landing module had one format carbon module – carbon dioxide absorber filter, and the the space – the main capsule had the different one and they had to make one fit to the other. So this is what they actually did, and of course the most important component that they had on board was duct tape, and so they they made that whole system work. But that's just to tell us that carbon, indoor carbon dioxide levels, if they get too high, will kill you. Now a series of studies were done recently in Schenectady, New York, at a research center – or Schenectady? University of Syracuse, that's it – and they built this amazing facility, so that's what's upstairs, it looks like corporate America, windowless, boring cubicles, but that's what's below, every single one of those cubicles, they could change the air quality, the amount of carbon dioxide, the amount of volatile organic compounds, VOC's, and then they invited in test subjects over the course of a week, six days, eight hours a day, and they had them basically playing a game, not a video game but a game in which you are a city manager and you receive a series of emails, and like there's a fire at the tire plant and there's a problem at the school and there's a this and a that. So you have to go find out, oh, there's a fire, what's in that what's in that plant? What's that chemical, what are the risks? Should we use water or not to put it out? And so you have all these tasks to go doing a lot of analysis and figure out what you should do next and it requires a lot of higher cognitive function, and then they varied and they tried the air conditions – the conditions of the air that are found in most conventional offices, and then they said we're gonna do like a LEED building where they made a lot of effort to have low VOC indoor materials but are still ventilating according to the current standards, and then just for interest, they tried a much higher rate of ventilation in which there was also low VOC's but also higher rates at which outdoor air was flushed in and so the indoor carbon dioxide levels were lower, and what they found was astonishing. These, again, are the conditions, what they call conventional – and there are numbers associated with this – outdoor levels are around 400 parts per million now, indoor levels according to current best practice, if everything's running right, are typically between 1,000 and 1,100, 1,200 parts per million, and then they tried what they called enhanced green where they flushed air about three times as fast as normal and got the indoor carbon dioxide level down to around 550 parts per million. So they run that experiment and then they tried all these different tests, and they have a lot of different tasks and I won't go through them all, but information usage, information seeking, searching, crisis response and so on, and then they score you. How long did it take you to find the right answer, did you ever find the right answer, and so on. And then they just normalized to the each of these categories, whatever score you got under typical office conditions, and then they compared the score you get in a green building and then what score you got for that task in an enhanced green building. So you'll see on the ability to use information using both provided information and information that has been gathered towards attaining an overall goal, the people in these conditions got a score three times higher on that one measure, and so there's this range of different tasks down to ones where you're just looking for information, Googling, something we're all good at now. You know, there it was only like 10% better, maybe barely noticeable, but averaged over all of the tasks that we ask knowledge workers to do every day, a huge difference. In fact, they said if you could hire somebody – suppose you weren't changing the air that – the conditions of indoor air, but you just were you had two employees, you know you had three employees you could pick from, one who got these normal scores, one who got these scores, and one who got these scores, how – you know it's like that infomercial, how much would you pay, how much more do people who perform that much better get offered as salaries? And the answer, they used the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and they found that that difference, you would have to pay $6,500 a year more in salary to get somebody who was that much better at those mental tasks. So when we talk about how much is a green building providing good fresh – good air quality worth? It's worth – if you're not gonna make your building provide that good air quality, you're gonna have to go and hire a much smarter person then stick them in your in your mediocre environment. So conversely, presumably this maps to productivity and so on. So to put that in context, well if we're providing all this much energy, if we're providing all this air, won't that cost some energy? And these scientists who did this work summarized their work and they said, well if you don't do anything clever with recovering the energy that you're – of the air you're flushing back out and it depends on your climate zone, you might that might cost you as much as $40 a year per employee. But remember, they just said that you're gonna get a value of $6,500 a year in better productivity out of that employee. Now if you apply good energy efficient technologies like we use in some of the buildings here in Dallas with energy recovery, where we're recovering the dryness and the coolness, let's say in the summertime, of the air that we're flushing back out so that it can kind of pre-temper the air that we're taking in, that cost can be dropped in half. So what I wanna do is show some buildings where we're applying these results. This is a building that just opened up, a project that just opened up in Georgia Tech, this is an office building for the the people at the university who manage all the – they manage $800 million a year worth of research contracts, and they also wanted to have a conference center for their own employees but also to be a resource for the rest of the university and they were in the middle of scraping up eight – or seven acres of surface parking, so we stacked it into a parking deck, and then the third thing is, the water rates that they pay in Atlanta are outrageous and so they are doing – there's already something like this at Emory University where they're actually harvesting the sewage and getting non-potable water that they can use in the campus cooling towers, can be purified to the level that's suitable for use in cooling towers, and saving the money, and so this project hosts all three. But the thing I call your attention, is that cost, this building was built for $275 – the office building component was built for $275 a square foot, which for a university building is – it was very economical, it's cheaper than the average building at Georgia Tech. So we call those studies I was telling you about before the CogFX studies, so we get to that level of air quality at a low energy cost. In fact, this meets – there's a green building standard called Ashrae 189, it's structured just like LEED, it's just that you don't – there's no certification process, it's a standard enforced by your code official and they've adopted that as their standard at Georgia Tech. On energy it has to be at least 25% better than the most current energy code, and so it met all of those targets. And we how we managed to get that cost down included like working super closely with the – we wanted to do solar shading, and the typical way is you just order a whole bunch of aluminum fins, aluminum fins are really energy intense to make and expensive, and so we worked with a local vendor of standing seam roofs and we designed a way to achieve that same look and performance using just brick metal forms. That's new construction, but I also want to talk about applying these approaches towards getting energy better energy performance on you know, 20, 30, 40 year old buildings. This building on the left here is the external view, we did a renovation of about half the floors of this building in the downtown medical campus and called the JBJ Labs project, and we did this – so this was a lab renovation. Now labs typically cost new construction, $500, $600, $700 a square foot, 'cause there's so much stuff going on in a lab building. This renovation was done for $158 a square foot, and so we took these windowless, cubey labs, and blew open all the walls. That glass before that you saw on the outside view, that was glazing that only – you only got to see if you were in the corridor, 'cause it was designed – the building was designed at a time when they thought that looking out the window might distract the scientists. So we blew all that open and we made it so that this building is plug and play, so each of those lab benches actually just gets all their stuff that they need from the ceiling, and if you want to play a trick on your fellow scientist, you can pick up and move her lab bench to another end of the building and plug it back in and so on if you want, that's really about adaptability to keep the the overall life cycle cost of running such a building and maintaining and modifying it as low as possible. We opened up all this glazing and they said, but won't that cause glare on the south side of the building? And so this has the first installation in the state of it's just motorized blinds that just come down and tilt according to where the sun is, a little sensor on the roof, and so we said no, we can keep people, give them a view, we can give them sun when they want it, and it's under automatic control but you can override it, and so that kind of a notion also allowed this building to have basically we were able to cut the energy use of this about in half. We also had to argue with the regulatory agencies, because at the time there was this thing called the National Institutes of Health and they espouse building standards for government research labs, and they had this standard that required this outrageous level of light in every – you know back here in the corner you needed to provide 75 foot-candles, and we said, how about we provide 75 foot-candles on the workbench and we'll provide an ambient – like 25 foot-candles – everywhere else where we're just walking around? And they said oh, okay, and so they then updated and changed the standard. So part of the game of a good owner and a good design team is working with the standards organizations you know, to get more realistic more realistic standards and performances. The other thing we did in this context was, we couldn't blow open the entire floor plate, we just took the bays of the building that we're nearest where all the glass was and that's where the people spend all their time, and then the room where they keep their microscopes or their incubators and so on. Those, it's okay to keep those ones to be windowless so it's sort of targeting where you're gonna spend your money. Next project to show like a historic renovation, can you do this on really old buildings? 'Cause Dallas has some very impressive really old buildings. So this is the Elks Club and on what is called Elks Place actually in downtown New Orleans, and the Tulane School of Social Work was up on the leafy campus uptown but they wanted to move downtown because this spot turns out to be the best bus connected place in the city. There's like eight different bus lines that come together at this point, so for a lot of their practicums where they're integrating with different neighborhood organizations, they wanted one that people could afford to get to quickly and cheaply, and so that's a little bit like the El Centro campus in DCCCD which is very well connected by transit and a lot of their students use transit. So we took that building and kind of did a radical rethink on the inside of that building, so we wanted it to feel modern and interesting on the inside but we also went through and changed out the glazing units, we you know replaced them with Low-E, we were able to build a new insulated wall that manages moisture and manages way – cut way down on infiltration into that building, and we were able to use lighting really strategically in that way, and the biggest thing I'd say why we were able to do this for also around less than $200 a square foot, more like $150 a square foot, was – so we took this essentially windowless experience where it had all been chopped up, and turned it into this kind of an experience, and we were able to do that was that when you're working in an old building, the biggest risk at bid time is the contractor feels like, I don't know what's inside this building, when I open up those walls, there'll be a pipe and I didn't even know it was there – I'm seeing nods of recognition. So we convinced the owner to actually break out demolition and let a contract for demolition to gut it down to clean interior walls, and then we did a walkthrough, we held the pre-bid meeting inside the gutted space and that helped the contractors have much greater degree of certainty about what it was really gonna cost to do this upgrade. So simple rules for you know what could be applied – and you know, you're from all over here, not just DCCCD – the first one I want to call because we've got people who are into buildings operations here is that individual choice or operator choice, it has a huge impact. This is a survey of 50 schools, there was a big school building boom in the late '60s, early '70s, in the Toronto metropolitan area. They built 50 schools, they had a pattern template that they used and you know, they would change where the entrance was, but it was essentially the same design modified for 50 different locations around the metropolitan area. So they were all about the same time, they all had about the same budget per square foot, and then they finally pulled together how much they were actually spending on utilities for each building, and intriguingly, what they found was a 3 to 1 variation between the most efficient school in energy use per square foot per year and the least efficient one. Remember, same building type, essentially same building design, same climate. These were all operational choices. When the principal of this school was told, this is your school, within six months she moved her school to the middle of the pack with low cost, no cost interventions, just people paying more attention. Now principals have a lot on their plate, right? And part of it is just informing people what the – you know, where they stand can have a huge impact, it's not about shaming, it's just like oh, it's possible. That's the big secret is that it's possible to make a building at that much lower cost and there are a lot of school districts that wise to this – famously the Powder River school district in Colorado that basically said, three quarters of all the savings flows right back into your budget, principal, and so it became this like not profit center, but it became a center for getting all the discretionary money you wished you could have for programs. So you aligned people's you know shared shared savings results in in a shared benefit. So operations choices matter. For new construction or major renovation projects, just designing to the most aggressive energy code that you can makes a big difference. So this is the – if I just said as 100, this is the average of all different building types, if I – just for reference point, they did a big survey of all the existing buildings back in 2003 and then when they promulgated the 2007 Ashrae code which becomes the international energy conservation code of 2009 and so on down the line, you can see this one always follows that by two years. When they did this they said, hi, if we built the average buildings but to this new code, this is their energy use, we'd save 31% and so on, with each progressive improvement in the code, the market basket of buildings out there will use less and less energy. So as an owner you know, there is it's true that right now in Louisiana, this is the energy code. Right now California has an energy code way out here, Texas is based on the 2015 and Dallas and so on, they're all there. San Antonio has jumped one, right, so it's up to a municipality and that's by law, but as an owner you have the freedom to just say we want our buildings to be designed to the most recent code. So even if the rest of Dallas says it's the 2015 IECC, you could just say, put in your RFP, by the way, this building's gonna be designed to the 2018, and so you will enjoy – you know it's it's not nothing, it's an 8% better energy savings, and what that means is especially for the small projects, the simple projects, if you're doing a big $50 million, $100 million building, then you can put on our propellor beanies and and do energy models and all kinds of fancy tuning, but the energy energy code is set up with prescriptive requirements. It just says, if nothing else, if you're in this climate zone, use this much insulation, use this kind of a window and so on, don't use more than this amount of glass. That's the big one for architects, bad architects always trying to make glass boxes. And so if you follow the prescriptive requirements of the most recent energy code, you'll enjoy better and better savings. So that can make a difference. So in summary I'd say that requiring the most aggressive code that you can for your projects makes sense, and require – based on what I showed earlier – daylight, views, and a higher than normal amount of fresh air per person, for the people who are actually there. We don't need to provide all this air at 2:00 in the morning if there's nobody there, so we have to make buildings become more responsive. So right now we've got 15, 20 people in this room, so we need – say if we had 20 people, we'd need 800 cubic feet per minute of fresh air in this room. When it has 150 people in it we need – or if it has 100 people, we need 4,000, right? So we need to make buildings become more responsive so that we can deliver it rather than what we've found is in many buildings, the there's no actual increase in the amount of fresh air that in terms of the the maximum capacity that the building needs, it's all about sending it where it needs to be. So one of our things, we've been finding ways to work with mechanical engineers on that. I started to mention at the beginning of the talk the idea of embodied carbon. This is a kind of – this is the thing people, especially in historic preservation, have been saying forever, which is you know the most sustainable building is the one that's already there, but it's starting to – people have started to do the math. Right now about 30% of all carbon emissions worldwide is traceable to the operation of the buildings that exist, the electricity, the gas they use. Another 10% of all the carbon emissions worldwide are the buildings we're building this year. It's the carbon of construction. So for that 30%, well those buildings are all there and we're only like adding 1%, 2% per year, so our – if we made every building net zero for the next ten years, the impact – that's nice, we feel better about ourselves, but the impact will be very modest. On the other hand, if we cut the carbon intensity of every building that we're building, the carbon of construction in half, which seems achievable just by being careful about stuff, that's a huge effect. That's like that's like cutting global carbon emissions by 5%, and that's under the direct control of the people who are specifying new construction and the architects and structural engineers who are writing the specs. So getting our head around embodied carbon is like the new big thing. When people suddenly realize that, given how much carbon we are allowed to keep throwing into the atmosphere before the temperature exceeds certain limits at which they're worried about it will spiral on without any further help from humans, that carbon budget, a significant fraction of the total carbon budget of how much left we're left to build is traceable to our building materials. Because things are happening already that are kinda for free, which is that Texas is the largest generator of renewable energy in the country, apart from old hydro stations. California's ahead on that, but in all other regards, Texas swamps California, it swamps every other state. So you have – your grid is getting cleaner every year, more and more wind mostly, some solar coming online. In Colorado, solar with battery storage is cheaper in open in open auctions than the cost of operating the coal fired power plants that already exist, so it's cheaper for the utility to just not bother to fire up the coal power plant, to just take new solar with batteries to get through that. So this transition's happening, so for our electric grid, there's a certain amount that's gonna happen for free if our buildings are electric. That's another thing that certain municipalities are starting to do, where in California, they banned new hookups of natural gas because they said, the grid's gonna get cleaner. If you build that building that it can only use natural gas for heating, like you're not gonna come rip out the boiler five years from now, but and so the whole question is, how do we start to make the buildings to work better with renewable power? So and that's not bad for the future of Texas. Like I said, Texas is the Texas of wind energy, right? And so if we – Texas has a great future in this world and so you're not being anti-Texan to make your buildings electric, all electric. You're making them future forward Texan, the part that the rest of the country's gonna be lining up by is the renewable power that Texas generates. And then this one I'll put a plug in, and this is harder in contracting, which is, we should reward – I told you the story of the school district that rewards the principals and the teachers who help you know their buildings be use less energy and their operations staff, that money flows back to that school. So that's shared savings, you get this benefit back. Wouldn't it be neat, you know we all know of buildings that would claim they were gonna be super green and when the bill came in the next year, turned out to not be so. There's always ten different reasons that that may have happened, but the biggest reason is that there's no there's no penalty for making a building that didn't actually perform like the predictions said, and so if we made it a game of the major – there's a government research lab, big building, $100 million building, where they held back $3 million of the $100 million budget as reward for how well the building performed after one year, and they distributed that to the contractor, to the building operations staff as bonuses, to the architects and engineers who designed that project, and said there's this pot, but you only get to add that pot if this building hits the target. Suddenly, everyone's everyone's goals were aligned, and so we need to structure the the bids that we're doing when we're seeking new buildings and major renovation projects, if we get everybody's you know incentives in the right place you know, what is it? You grab their wallet and their hearts will follow, so I think that that's a big opportunity. So with that, we have about five minutes left and I thank you and I'd love to hear any questions or stories you have from your own organizations. Thanks.


Interactive Teaching of UN Goals Video

This talk provides a computer interactive blueprint, based on available 2019 and other reference data to help design K-16 curriculum.

Interactive Teaching of UN Goals Video Transcript

[Jerry Bartz]: Thank you for coming for this session on what is sustainability in lesson planning. I thought on today's keynote speaker by Mr. Garrett, he surprised me. I had somebody from art using a map and that's what we're gonna talk about. We're gonna talk about something that you call a map, but what it actually is is it's data capture. Now these maps, I'll go into them in a little bit of detail, is anything you can put onto a spreadsheet, you drop it into the program, and if you have an XY coordinate, maybe an XYZ coordinate, it comes up on a map, and what you get are patterns and trends, and patterns and trends are so important in areas of science, business, real estate, social studies, because they're showing us what is happening, it's showing us grouping. I'm gonna go to the next slide here, let's see. Okay, so my name is Jerry Bartz, I'm a GIS coordinator at Brookhaven college, and somebody might ask you know, what is why are you talking about lesson plans? What is your experience in sustainability? Well here's some of my sustainability project experiences. Back in 1970, I helped reduce freshwater lake eutrophication. Big word, what it means is that the algae was building up in the lakes, it was taking out all the oxygen through the decay, it was settling to the bottom, eventually the lake disappears. What we found out is that it was due to phosphate in wash day detergents. So that's where I started. My master's thesis, I did work on waste in radioactive elements in the environment in western Puerto Rico under the then Atomic Energy Commission, so you get to see a depth of what I can do in chemistry, what I can do in math, what I can do in models. In 1993 I pulled off the first sequestering of radioactive waste at a military nuclear facility without having one of my workers exposed to radiation. In 2011, biodiversity, I have over 800 spottings and 300 species identified on places like iNaturalist and Project Noah, and then in 2016 like I was talking about, that is probably my 15 minutes of professional glory, I actually had them stop lease fracking, they withdrew the lease, on the Lake Lewisville dam, and that was done using mapping, GIS.

[Speaker A]: So all of this was done with GIS?

[Jerry Bartz]: The the 2011 and 2016 was done with GIS. I could've done I could've done 1970 but they didn't have GIS there, and my master's thesis, I surely could've used GIS for it instead of the raw mapping that I did. But it's capable of it. Okay, educator experience. I have a BS in chemistry, an MS in geology, the infamous Ph.D ABD, that means anything but dissertation, in this case it means anything but my second draft. I'm probably one of the few students that went with my second draft, went into industry, and the company I worked for in R&D patented my dissertation. I have four patents as a scientist, so that's pretty good. Okay, I have 4 ½ years using a Texas teacher's license in chemistry and physics, so I know how to talk to students, to pedagogy, I know what they're looking for. One of my students achieved National Merit Scholar, another one is a Washington, D.C. political consultant, and these are students from south Dallas, by the way.

[Speaker A]: From Brookhaven?

[Jerry Bartz]: Not Brookhaven, Faith Family Academy if you know where that's from, okay. Two years adjunct professor of geology at UT Austin, I got a fellowship for teaching excellence, and then two years as a tutor in geospatial technology, GIS, and I'm a contributing editor to three IS – to three GIS textbooks. So I love the subject. So when we talk about students and we talk about sustainability, we talk about the importance of getting sustainability concepts to our students, but all of our students are different. They have different needs, different interests. For instance, for the business major, here's an interesting one in the Dallas Morning News. Tequila producers lay groundwork for sustainability, sustainability of the agave plant. For the environmental science majors, sustainability may mean – as I did – Dallas geologist warns of fault lines under the Lake Lewisville dam, which was at that time ranked as the 8th most hazardous dam in the United States, and very fortuitously, I gave a presentation showing where the proposed fractures were going, which I proposed. Within one or two days, that dam failed within 300 feet of one of my fracture zones. Now we didn't have a lot of water going, but the backside sorta collapsed and we – they had some problems.

[Speaker B]:

[unintelligible]

[Jerry Bartz]: Pardon?

[Speaker B]:

[unintelligible]

[Jerry Bartz]: The fracking system, that was on a federal lease. What happens with your – when you have a waterway that comes, a dam, a lake that we built, that becomes government property, and so the area that they wanted to frack was actually in the lake in a fracture system that would've connected directly to the dam, and you never can tell what could happen. Now for our biodiversity science majors, sustainability may mean, here is photo documentation in 2019 of two species in the Caribbean that I did, and it's very important as we get to be citizen scientists that we are able to say that we actually have these species and this is the first time they're in this area. We are now showing that that area has increased biodiversity, which is SDG 14, marine life. And then for all of our DCCCD students, sustainability involves sustainable cities, and all of these sustainable cities are economic prosperity, social equality and environmental quality. So all of your students that you have, have to have some interest in sustainability. In 2016 the UN put forth 17 sustainable development goals, and these reflect environmental concerns and human aspirations for peace and justice in future generations. Sustainability is not a choice, it's a necessity. I want to read from something that I I put here, sustainability is not a choice, it is a necessity. Without it the human species will suffer extinction, which was the fate of 99% of the species that existed on Earth during a 3.5 billion year span of Earth. The human species has proved its resilience. Approximately 75,000 years ago the human species survived extinction, and what the studies found was that mankind was limited to between, whichever study you go, as few as 40 to 1,000 breeding pairs. That is why we have that same maternal DNA that we all have. Some have attributed this event to global winter, crop failure caused by the eruption of the super volcano Toba. So sustainability for us, we have to be able to sustain. Usually I will say, I'll deal with food and water, and I'll get to that later because that's a necessity, but really this is about social justice and sustainability. So let's take a look at this. Well, whenever we're talking about lesson plans, we've noticed that, within the United States as whole, our test scores have been declining, and then I came across this article by Sugata Mitra, he's a TED prize winner for 2019, and he came up with a statement and he says, our schools aren't broken, they're just outdated, and what he went into was with a computer study, and he found out by using computers, letting the students, with their curiosity, discover and keep on working out problems with a minimum level teacher, the teacher did not even have to know the subject matter, the teacher only had to encourage the students, and Mitra went out and he tried this out on a distant village, and after he tried it out and after he tested it, his students tested out as some of the best students in the private colleges in India. Most of our student – most of our teachers you know, don't like to get involved with the computers, particularly something like a mapping program or something like GIS, because they don't know it, but they don't have to know it. The students will learn it and that's all they have to be is encouraged. So Mitra's method fostered problem solving and critical thinking, this is what the private sector is saying they need our students to have. They develop computer inquiry skills, again, this is what industry says they want with our graduates, and the third thing, it promoted collaborative teamwork. The students were helping one another, they did not need the teacher, they helped one another, and again, this is probably the third trait that our private sectors want in our graduates. Many people are visual learners, and so we could see that with our students. They look a lot at this. So let's start using the computer screens, the Google screens, whatever screens. Actually I can take all my maps and I can put them out on this cellphone, to tell you the truth. So these what we call maps or expressions, are universal languages for organizing and communicating concepts. But now, how do we incorporate sustainability into our lesson plans for a student body with diverse interests? I found on the web this particular what we call a story map, and this is what we're trying to encourage the students to develop, it's called a story map. So they can express their views, they can go and they can grab images, they can put these images in into something a lot more powerful than a PowerPoint. We're talking about something that you can zoom into areas, you can cover many many areas. So let's see, and this was on redlining and racial capitalism. As you look over here, I put my comments. Okay, I said the first topic is redlining and racial capitalism in Louisville, Kentucky, in 1937. The legal language can get a bit insensitive, as it was at that time, but let's go and let me go and take a look at C17 I think I have. This is what the student embedded. So he found old records and he embedded it in here and you go through here and this is a form for obtaining mortgages, and you can scroll through.

[Speaker C]:

[unintelligible]

[Jerry Bartz]: Yeah yeah, it it can be done here.

[Speaker C]: It starts with a J if I'm not mistaken, it's where the

[unintelligible] – I can picture it in my head but don't remember the name.

[Speaker D]: Okay, so this is discriminatory

[unintelligible]

[Jerry Bartz]: Now right over here is the racial discrimination. That particular applicant got a C because it was in an entirely black neighborhood, so I quickly went and I went to B15 right over here, I'm gonna close this, and if I got this right, I'll go all the way to the bottom, in a white area very similar, this is a white applicant, and for the loan, B. Now your students, I I just did that, I don't know what else is in there. There's a lot of data in there. This student went and did a lot of work. Now the quality, since I teach GIS, the quality is really basic, but with that basic ability to that student, he caught my eye. He was able to communicate, he was able to communicate to somebody he didn't know, and this is available throughout the world. Now another amazing thing about this student, he came in and he switched presentation modes and put in a timeline of photos from 1860 all the way to 2019, and each of these photos, you can come over here, Ken, and it gives an address on it, and you can go down to here and see that it is on North Street and you can see the exhibit that he has. So he's doing a lot of work, then he went, view neighborhoods, compare segregation, compare income, compare poverty, compare race. This student did an excellent job with just a bare minimal knowledge of GIS, probably with a teacher, mentor, saying, you're doing a good job. I can hear Mitra now, you're doing a good job. Wow.

[Speaker F]: I still cannot use GIS, even – I mean –

[Jerry Bartz]: You don't have to.

[Speaker F]: Oh, I do, I think I should be able to do it.

[Speaker G]: Yeah, I mean I didn't know about that, but my head is running, like you're saying. It's like, I can do like a million things with this, and I teach English.

[Jerry Bartz]: Yeah.

[Speaker F]: I need you to be my teacher –

[Jerry Bartz]: Well wait wait wait 'til you see what else I have for you on this. So I'm not gonna stop here, I mean as far as this. I'm gonna give you an area, and it's all in here, where you can go and it's broken down according to subject areas and you can start teaching tomorrow. Yeah, well there there is there is a lot to learn, it's it's sort of like – it really is sort of like an advanced PowerPoint you know, but but what what it gives you, it gives you a live map where you can go in and look at it, and it gives you that ability to take that spot on the map and put in things like documents, pictures, statistics.

[Speaker F]: So you start creating socio-historical you know –

[Jerry Bartz]: Right, right. It's it's really it's truly an amazing tool. Well, then as I was going through again and I went and I said, wow, this presentation chronicles one person's viewpoint on the March for Fair Housing, circa 1967, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Guess who was in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

[Speaker F]: Martin Luther King.

[Jerry Bartz]: No no, I wish he were. I was.

[Speaker F]: Oh oh, okay.

[Jerry Bartz]: Okay, and the leader of the march happened to be my religious mentor, Father James Groppi, and so I had somewhat of a connection to this and so I was looking at it, and I wanted to see it from this person's viewpoint, and mine is a little different. I'll tell you why I think his is a little different, because there were more white college students in those marches, but what you will see is mostly black faces, okay. This was a sort of a semi-community effort where we said you know, this is unfair, I guess back in the '60s – I went to a integrated high school, so –

[Speaker F]: You?

[Jerry Bartz]: Yeah, oh yeah.

[Speaker F]: Where?

[Jerry Bartz]: Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

[Speaker F]: In the '60s it was integrated?

[Jerry Bartz]: Yes, it it was a technical and trade school, so you got in there on merit, and since you got in there – but it was an all boys school, and of course, guess who had the best football team in the state. We had over 2,000 boys and some of them were in plumbing and auto mechanics and had natural biceps, you know. But anyway, so this is a picture in Milwaukee where we had Afro-American groups, and yes, we had our people that were biased so – on color, but those of us that were exposed to the black community, speaking of it – plus I'm Polish – oh, here here comes an interesting little bias over here, my family's also mixed race, okay. So not mine, but my daughter is married to a man of color, and so excuse the expression. You – are you from the Dallas area? No, okay. You familiar with the expression bright?

[Speaker F]: Oh yeah, oh well that's –

[Jerry Bartz]: Okay.

[Speaker F]: It has nothing to do with Dallas.

[Jerry Bartz]: Yeah, okay. So so anyway, so I have three three grandchildren that are mixed race, and they they're wonderful grandchildren and I have one of them that just is really kinda, I'm gonna get ya, you know. And so the other day the one of the counselors came up to to my granddaughter and said, what's your culture? And my granddaughter looked at him, I'm pure Polish, my daughter's pure Polish, my granddaughter says, I'm Polish.

[Speaker F]: You know Archie Bunker would've loved that one.

[Jerry Bartz]: Well anyway, here's here's the viewpoint. Now notice the difference in the style, now we have a little bit more advanced. Notice over here on this side how this person uses larger text so you can read it, but still you know, that other person caught my attention. So a little bit difference in style, you can either drop down and hit this and it will go to here, but what you need to do is go over and press this button. Now this is historical data, and I say I live through this, and what you can do with this is you can actually zoom in and get a good viewpoint of what Milwaukee looked like back in the '60s, that students should've done better, but I sorta like this presentation, and went over here and showed the typical house. This is the person, Fred Reed, and I never met the man, but this is his story. So the way he has his set up, you don't move down, you click on the picture, and now you have historical footage of what the Fair Housing was, March was. Well and not only that, but look at here's where it occurred, and he's got an address there, and then you can zoom in, notice I'm moving it along.

[Speaker G]: So you can connect it to Google Earth, too, because that's very specific, but if you do the link to the address, with Google Earth you can physically see it.

[Jerry Bartz]: Right, if Google Earth has a 1967 –

[Speaker G]: Well no, but I mean so that they can compare then and now, so like if they're talking about comparison and contrast – for me, for my case –

[Jerry Bartz]: Right, and you can timeline on Google Earth also. Excellent, excellent, I agree with that. And by the way, when you get into advanced – and you can always give me a call on it – I can show you how to convert a KML, Google Known Markup Language, into GIS. Here the student or or the man talks about the black churches in the area that were in with the marches, the and mentions Father Groppi – no, I'm Roman Catholic, so he's my priest. No, he he's my spiritual mentor, I I grew up with him and he helped me through some rough times in my life. And that again, when we go and we take a look at that, the student did a really good job, he he's got the Eagles Club identified over here. We have – when you see, this is called pixelation, we've gone down too far – but anyway, I'm gonna get out of this one and go back to, PowerPoint slide, to the next one that I thought. Okay, now what I want to look at is the UN SDGs. I've been following these for many years. By the way, if you're not aware of it, these are supposed to be all done by 2030. This is the second attempt of sustainable development goals. Some of them worked, some of them didn't in the first one, so we're re-looking at them, but this is a really good thing to show to your students and you can see how it's coming up. Again, we're dealing with the dot patterns, and now when you go to the patterns, you go on here and you get actual values and name of the company – country. Matter of fact, you can actually take these boxes and you can put other categories in them. You've got a lot of data there, you've got a lot of data you can you can work with, and again, I have proprietary databases on these that are easier to get. You can get them from the UN but they're really rough. I have them pretty well worked up. When you're looking at this point over here, it's a column, one of many columns in a very long, what looks like an Excel sheet, and you can go over there and say, I wanna look at this column, I wanna look at this column. Okay, so you have actually, through the Esri corporation, access to 150 computer activities in science, history, geography, elementary science and social science topics. There are 15 minute activities accessible from any internet capable device. That means it can be a tablet, it can be an iPad, it can be a Chromebook or a laptop, and they can be loaded on Blackboard or your Blackboard equivalent. Like I say, all you need is the internet. It's built to share, and I will give you also access to the ability to take – it comes normally in a PDF, I have a program there that will convert them over to Microsoft Word, you can put whatever questions you want on this, we have it with just your basic questions – and and we'll go over that and show you what one example looks like – and but you can modify it, and to help you as the granny teacher, guess what. On the first set of exercises, they have the answers for you that you don't have to give to the students. Now I just want to bring you back, so sustainability is meeting the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. We've always had that, I've always had that, I never wanted to use more than I needed, and that's what we need to stress. We want our students not only to use what they need in the environment, but to make it a better place, not only for themselves but for the generations that follow them. Here's what one looks like and here's the one I chose, because I said, what I wanna look at is food supply. That's number two of the SDGs. Without food, without water, you can forget about the other ones. But that doesn't mean you're restricted to it, but I just wanted to take a look for that. So what it gives you is the critical things that I remember from teaching. You will, the student will learn, the student will learn, the student will learn, and we also have this geared for Texas –

[Speaker H]:

[unintelligible]

[Jerry Bartz]: Okay, so you see your learning objectives, and now what you can do – and on not the following yet, okay – and that is basically how the farming one opens up. Whoa, I bet I got too many open. Okay, I got that. That that was that was something else I was doing. While that was up there, you noticed that that was a flash that one of the layers that I have up there requires a license, a very very high license. What Esri does to every K12, you can get a free license.

[Speaker I]: Is that per school, per teacher?

[Jerry Bartz]: Per school.

[Speaker I]: Per school.

[Jerry Bartz]: Per school, and but that covers everybody in that organization. Now if you're from Brookhaven –

[Speaker I]:

[unintelligible]

[Jerry Bartz]: A license covers everyone in the organization as long as they're using it for education purposes. Now the reason I backed up on that is because Brookhaven has their license, it's my – you know, that I use, that my students use, that faculty at Brookhaven uses – but administration, our main offices, they need a business license. They can't use our license, they have their own. So if your if your administration decides that they wanna use it for things like dashboards to measure some of the goals that they're trying to achieve and that, then you need a – they need a separate license. Not you, not your students, but this is strictly for the students. So we take a look at this and we can see that we can collapse it and just get details like this, or we can expand it like this. Now what I've gone through is, on these sheets, they they won't come up very well so I want you to take a look at, these are the questions that the students will be asking, and in italics are the answers for the questions, and again, this is editable. You don't give up the answers to your students. So it says, click the URL above to start the map, which we have, and what does arable mean? They'll have to look that up. Okay, then it says click on a country to reveal a popup. Okay, let's – I'm gonna zoom in a little bit, now you're gonna see the quality of the maps. So I wanna go to Sudan, I click on it, and remember I said you can put a lot in those columns?

[Speaker J]: Now does the number mean a decrease or an increase?

[Jerry Bartz]: Well that's – okay, that's one of the questions, by the way. So you look over here and you see 46, down to 2015, it's 29. Now here's your critical thinking, student, why do you think that there's less arable land? What has happened to the land, is it being developed?

[Speaker J]: Global warming.

[Jerry Bartz]: Yeah, so then the next question is, click on a country – okay, using the world agricultural land, which countries have over 60% arable land? So what we're teaching the student now is how to read a map, what we call a map, but really what did we call it before? We called it a graph, didn't we? In mathematics we called it a graph, because here are your values. So now what we're teaching the student to do is associate a color with a percentage of arable lands, and that these are classifications, and then it says in one of these, let's take a look at Saudi Arabia, what's unusual about that? So we go out over here and notice around Saudi Arabia, we have 3% - 4%, 37%, 28%, Saudi Arabia went from 40% to 81%, how did they do that? Irrigation, right?

[Speaker J]: Where do they get the water from?

[Jerry Bartz]: Well, the sea, and they desalinate it, right?

[Speaker J]: That costs a lot of money.

[Jerry Bartz]: That costs – they got a lot of money. Okay, and then we look at some other areas, and I'm gonna zoom out, and we look at Russia, and we're looking at 13%. Big country, but what is different about Russia than the ones to the south?

[Speaker J]: Does this have to do with the ice caps melting 'cause they're so far north?

[Jerry Bartz]: So far north, so it's colder, so you don't have a lot of a lot of land that you can you can farm, you've got some permafrost there. Siberia, I don't know if it ever gets warm enough to do anything. But what did you do? You just asked me a question, that's what we want the students to do.

[Speaker K]: And then the construction with permafrost is completely different than the construction here as well.

[Jerry Bartz]: Again, more questions, more critical thinking.

[Speaker L]: You know what my issue is? My students don't have this in their classroom, they don't have laptops. We can't even – I'm in an underprivileged school.

[Jerry Bartz]: Yeah.

[Speaker L]: They don't even take

[unintelligible] so it's unfortunate.

[Speaker M]: I have the same problem, but I'm wondering if it would be just enough by using your teacher to talk about it and then based on their questions.

[Jerry Bartz]: Like I'm doing here.

[Speaker L]: Oh, I see what you're saying. Yeah yeah yeah, oh yeah, that's a good – yeah, we still do that, so it'd be part of the lesson –

[Speaker M]: So it becomes an integrated lecture.

[Speaker L]: Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah, you're right, you're right.

[Jerry Bartz]: Believe me, you can get them to put it onto a cellphone if –

[Speaker M]: Oh yeah, yeah.

[unintelligible]

[Jerry Bartz]: That, they can have – if their cellphone is internet connected, they can get this map. I mean it's gonna be difficult to –

[Speaker L]: Oh, I see what you're saying.

[Speaker M]: But I do that, they all have a cellphone and I do that, I make them do things with their phone because you're right, they're on their phone 24/7, and unless you use the phone to keep them engaged –

[Speaker L]: Gotcha, okay.

[Jerry Bartz]: Yeah.

[Speaker L]: That makes – I had –

[Jerry Bartz]: So so you can you can have them do it, and they'll consider that a challenge. I'll tell you what, if I were a teacher in that situation, I'd bring up this map and you would see –

[unintelligible]

[Speaker L]: You've got 5 minutes to

[unintelligible]

[Jerry Bartz]: Well we're we're coming to an end here on amount of time, I thank you. So I have added all this, where you can get geo-inquiries and it's right over here on this page right over here, and then I go and I put all the 150 lessons in all the areas that you have them, and this is what they're like. Now if you have any questions you know, you can call me, I've given you cheat sheets on this, I've even I've even gone through on some of these things and said hey, you wanna see a pretty map? Here's the URL for it.

[Speaker L]: Okay, I need your office hours 'cause I wanna come visit you for something I'm doing on my dissertation, for me.

[Jerry Bartz]: If you have – anything you have, please contact me by email, and then after you contact me by email, give me your phone number where I can contact you, okay, and I will get back to you when I can, and and happily, and you know, you can spread this out to your to your fellow teachers –


Teaching Sustainability Video

Focusing on creative reuse, materials management and access, waste reduction and the educational programs of SCRAP Denton.

Teaching Sustainability Video Transcript

[Rachel Weaver]: Well thank y'all for coming, the summit has been really great, I got to catch some really amazing discussions so far this morning, so thanks for sticking around for the last breakout session. I will be talking about some experiences I have had in teaching sustainability, looking at sort of the way that that has come through in creative reuse, and I'll talk about what that is and define it, and environmental education. So my primary experiences have been sort of places I work and so scrap creative reuse is the only creative reuse store in DFW that's open to the public, so Fort Worth has a creative reuse store called The Welman Project, but it's primarily for teachers, so if you are an educator and close to the Fort Worth area, they're a great resource to have. SCRAP in Denton, we are a open to the public, affordable materials arts and crafts store, we're also a non-profit that provides educational programming, so I'll talk a little bit more about that. I also work with sort of a internal department in the city called Sustainable Denton, it's primarily sort of an outreach component about sustainability and programming, and then I work at Clear Creek Natural Heritage Center and I'll talk about the sort of the public school educational programs we've had going on there that I've been a part of. So our guide for today, I'll first introduce the organizations that I'll be talking about, providing some definitions about creative reuse in environmental education and then talking about specific examples I have experience with, so this involves farms and gardens, really just taking learning outside and how we can bring that into our curriculum, syllabi. Really I want to offer resources that can help provide you materials or a starting point to incorporate sustainability and environmental education into your curriculum, so I don't really go in depth with maybe certain core criteria or specifics to different school districts, because really I think a lot of this can translate depending if you're working with homeschool groups or private schools, public schools, and just different requirements that you might be working to sort of fit around. I'll also talk about the nature center, the creative reuse center, and then sort of summarizing everything and just sort of tips that I've sort of learned over the years that seems to help with students of all ages, elementary, middle school, high school and college, and how to connect with students about sustainability. So a little bit about me, I am currently – my name is Rachel Weaver, I am the director of SCRAP Denton, the creative reuse store in Denton, we are a 501(c)(3) non-profit. I'm also the garden manager at Clear Creek Natural Heritage Center, it is a natural heritage center and nature park, it is Army Corps of Engineer land that is managed by the city of Denton, and I've worked out there as an intern and helping to facilitate the school field trips and managing sustainable gardener teaching workshops, seed feeding classes and those sorts of things. In my community I am also a board member and producer on KUZU, a community radio station in town. You have to listen online if you're outside of Denton because we have a three mile radius on the FM station, but we are a community radio station and I provide educational information there. I've also published on environmental imagination and sustainability topics. So my sort of passion with sustainability is to inspire people and to understand how we imagine and interact with our environments and how we can incorporate sustainability into educational opportunities. So I was previously the market vendor coordinator at the Denton Community Market, a local non-profit in Denton, working with farmers and small businesses at a market, I taught philosophy at Tarrant County College, I worked at a local sustainable farm in Denton, in grad school as a research assistant and worked on environmental philosophy programs, so really been working towards understanding the impact of environmental sort of sustainability and how we can inspire people into changing their behaviors. So this is a very brief, there are many definitions of sustainability, right? We're here at the sustainability summit, so this is sort of a very simple definition that we provide when we do teacher training just to give sort of an understanding of what sustainability is, and really what I sort of see come out the most to me in this sentence is sort of those last couple words, that sustainability is defined as the avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance. I think that idea of ecological balance is something that can really be sort of parsed through, so very simple explanation, all of these terms could be sort of parsed through to understand more in depth what that means to sustainability and sort of protecting natural resources, but I think ecological balance is something that is really striking to that definition. So a little bit about the organizations I'll talk about. SCRAP Creative Reuse is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, it's actually a national non-profit started in Portland, Oregon, and was started by teachers who had leftover materials from the classrooms and they didn't want to just throw them in the landfill, and so they started bringing them together, offering them for free or at affordable cost to other teachers, and starting this circular economy. So that's what a lot of what creative reuse is about is that we have stuff, we have lots of stuff, we've already made it, it's already in existence. Some of us only need to use it once, and so what do we do with those materials that we're no longer using or we don't have a use for in the context that we're doing, but it is still useful? It still has a use that someone else could creatively utilize. So our mission is to inspire creative reuse and environmentally sustainable behaviors by providing educational programs and affordable materials to the community. So why do we do the work that we're doing? We do it because we want to inspire people, we want to inspire people to change their behaviors. Who do we do that? We do that through providing educational programs and affordable materials to the community, so we take in donations of the supplies and we sort through it, we make sure it's still usable, we put it onto our floor and we provide those at a very marked down and affordable price. We also offer affordable educational programming, so we provide high quality creative reuse education for youth and adults and we try to keep those at an affordable cost while supporting our organization. Our big focus on sustainability is waste diversion, so reducing the amount of waste that we send to the landfill. In 2018, SCRAP Denton – so there are seven SCRAP sites around the U.S., Portland is our biggest store, SCRAP Denton was sort of started back in 2012 and all of the locations are very locally managed. We don't share inventory, so each location is sort of localized in the sense that we're working with the inventory that is donated to us. We offer educational programming based on what the community around us wants, and so while we're a national organization that has – we can help each other, we're also very localized in our communities connecting with what the community wants. We like to talk about this number, we feel pretty proud of this, 24 tons of usable materials

[audio malfunction] in Denton in 2018 alone. That feels great, we like to tell people, that's four elephants, just in Denton, yeah. So 47,000 pounds in 2018 and that feels great, that's something that we can educate people about. When you look at other statistics that is a drop in the bucket. In 2012, U.S. Americans produced 262 million tons of waste. That was 2012, we don't have – I couldn't find a stat for recent numbers, but let's assume that we produce more waste than we did in 2012. So you know that feels really good, especially we see that physical aspect of, we diverted that much waste and it went to the community and they created something with it and they they made gifts or they made toys or they made some piece of art where they sold it in their small business, and so it has an impact, but it's also – in sustainability, it's always that sort of uphill battle of seeing what your impact is in the larger scheme of things. But what's really essential is that we're changing behaviors and so we're starting to get people to think about how they can reduce waste, and so while we divert a certain amount, we're also changing those behaviors so that people are able to start to use reusable bags or make their own produce

[unintelligible] or have a fun evening with their family crafting that helps them save money and they create something for their home and they have fun together, so trying to really influence sustainable behaviors. The mission of the nature center, Clear Creek Natural Heritage Center, is to inspire environmental citizenship through an understanding of the natural heritage of north central Texas by providing nature experiences, education and research programs and conservation and restoration projects. So we host workshops that are free and open to the public, we do volunteer days where volunteers get to work on restoration projects with us, we work with the Elm Fork Master Naturalists that develop programming with us and have built up the school program that I'll talk about, and so it is a free park, it is sort of the closest space sort of nature space that Denton has where it's just a 20 minute drive and sort of suddenly you're out in nature, and it's 3,000 acres, about 10 miles of that is used for hiking, a lot of it is used for just conservation. Very little human sort of involvement in those spaces and there on other parts of it there is sort of hunting permitted and the hunting helps fund a lot of our programs, the hunting permits. So Clear Creek Natural Heritage Center, it's sort of in the in the public – 'cause it's managed by the City of Denton and it's Army Corps of Engineer property, and it's meant to be sort of restorative environmental spaces, and we're also sort of the back flow for Ray Roberts and Lake Lewisville, so whenever those lakes are high we get the draining that they do, so all the rains that we've had really have an impact on natural spaces, but those are always learning opportunities for students in helping them understand. So I'll first define creative reuse, I've talked a little bit about it, but for those of you that might not be familiar, this term creative reuse, also known as up-cycling or repurposing, those are kind of more common words we hear. It's when the addition of creativity to an already manufactured item brings a new function, so we turn a CD jewel case into a bird feeder, we turn wine corks into a cork board, take a torn up t-shirt and turn it into a pet toy or a rug. Reuse centers like SCRAP collect discarded materials from the public and reuse them to give them new life. Many centers resell these items to the public for a bargain or donate them to teachers, which we donate materials to our community as well, and allow these organizations to have future projects with them. We also do teacher training so that teachers can have a creative reuse center in their classroom, so you always have materials available for the kids to craft and learn with. This is sort of our circular economy idea, the art ecosystem of a thing. So let's start with bottle caps, those are all pretty common. These, they're clean, reusable, they're donated to us, we stock them, organize them, we make it into this unique shopping experience, people can purchase those or they get them in a workshop, they turn them into something unique, maybe that's given as a gift. Later on, maybe you're like oh, I'm done with this picture frame, and you can you know break down the materials again and repurpose them, and so trying to find that way of constantly reusing items, because like I said, we've created these things, they're already there, but how do we use them to the fullest and allow others to sort of get a piece of that pie, like allow others to have that opportunity to create with that item? So SCRAP's got sort of a couple different arms, we've already sort of been talking about these. In general, we are a material retail store and we focus on waste diversion, our educational programming involves field trips where schools can come to us or we go to schools, we do teacher training, Girl Scouting outings, birthday parties that always has like a creative reuse craft in it, we do adult workshops, we have tinker hour and kids' workshops, we do free create, studio time, and we try to be involved in our community by sort of reaching out as a resource. Being in Denton, we have three colleges. We have the two universities and the downtown NCTC campus now, and so we're a great resource for students to get office supplies, school supplies, we have teacher resources so that they can find those at an affordable cost and really just trying to make it to where anybody feels like they can create and they don't have to be – they don't have to break the bank in order to be creative. So environmental education can be defined as the organized efforts to teach how natural environments function, particularly how human beings can manage behavior and ecosystems to live sustainably. So that's about our behaviors, that's how we interact. So it's multidisciplinary, I think a lot of focus on environmental education

[audio malfunction] to the sciences, ecology, Earth science, atmospheric sciences. My background and what I like to see is coming up more and more talked about, because as part of my grad research was how to sort of get the social aspect more explicitly talked about in environmental issues, is to bring in sociology and anthropology, philosophy, political science, as well as history, art, music and performance, and so we see STEAM a lot but we still have that A that just kinda gets like, oh, you got that STEM with a little bit extra, right? But the art is really important because I think that that's really an entry point for a lot of people to start to comprehend sustainability, more so than – while everything else is important, art and music and these things can kind of have this more this effect where you didn't realize that you started thinking and caring about it, and suddenly you're aware of sustainable issues or an environmental aspect and it was just because you sort of you created something or you heard something, and so I think that that's a great way to kinda get people thinking about it without them realizing that they're thinking about it. So now going on to sort of examples and case studies, reasons to teach sustainability, a lot of you probably already incorporate this. First reason, get outside, right? We all want to get out of the classroom and go outside, today's a beautiful day finally, and so it's fun to get outside. There's an article I just saw that's like, environmental education is so important because it gets people outside, and so it's sort of the common thing that we go to. I remember in school it was always like, teacher's gonna throw you through a loop, like, we're doing class outside today, and you're just maybe you're just sitting in a circle outside but that was always a memorable day for experience – or for students. So it can also increase student awareness and achievement. I think that incorporating sustainability into curriculum will just start to bring about that situational awareness and that sort of environmental awareness and cultivate it in students. It's an innovative and exciting way to teach these topics, we're typically teaching social sciences, art, math and science. Sustainability can connect all of these things and you see how they influence each other. I, coming from the social science and art background, was always kind of you know, I didn't think I was capable of math and science in certain ways, and sort of putting myself into those areas where I thought, I can't collect that data or I'm gonna mess up the field research, and just sort of being in spaces where if you just participate fully and you do it, you see that you are capable of these things, and so – and vice versa, students who might think that they're they're better at math and science and that they don't have an artistic element, you see that they really do. And so how to incorporate those things to see that we all have these in us and when sustainability is at hand, we're we're really needing all of these facets of ourselves to help. It can also develop healthy habits and environmentally sustainable behaviors. I think when you start to when you bring a kid to a farm, they'll start to be more interested in vegetables, they'll start to want to try things out, they'll start to say wow, I know what that looks like on the plant and I and I learned more about it. So it can develop healthy habits, just getting kids outside is better, just getting them hiking, so I think that it has this physical and sort of emotional effect as well, and then it's active learning so students love it because it's more active than sort of sitting in the classroom. So take learning outside, one instance I've taught before and been involved in is sort of sustainable farm tours, developing school gardens and garden tours. So things to consider is the weather and the season, if it's really rainy or really cold, kids aren't gonna have fun. If it's really hot that's that can be risky for everybody. If you're if you're traveling to like a nature center or a farm you have to consider facilities, transportation and those things, and you want to think about group size. So at SCRAP for instance, we typically deal with smaller groups, 25 or less. A lot of times it's even under 10, but that's great because we get really intensive time with them. At the nature center a lot of groups would come out in like size of like 100 and you have to kind of break them up into groups so that you can kind of give that designated time to it, so consideration of group size and where you're going, and to just be prepared and prepare your group. So so many times where you know, it's a – it happens to be a cold day and the kids are wearing shorts on their hike, and you're just like, you are going to be freezing out there, or other days where you see the kids really prepared, that they wore long pants even though it's a little warm, you're like okay good, well they're hiking, there's gonna be bugs and things like that. So so just those little tips to help prepare students so that they're not distracted by those things that are making them uncomfortable, and a lot – you're gonna have students who you know, they've been outside, they go they go out with their family and they're all prepared for it, and so you just cultivate with them that extra learning, but then some students, especially if they're coming from Title I schools or lower income areas, they might have never been to a nature center or been in a space like this, and so you don't want to create a space where they're just gonna remember the negative, and so trying to make it to where they're comfortable but they're learning through the process, they're still with the group so that they're dealing with all of the same environmental factors that everybody's dealing with. This was like a little activity, it could be incorporated into a classroom already. This is like a pretty simple – for probably primarily like elementary and younger elementary age – but it's kind of a game we would play at the farm where you ask the students, where does this come from? So you can just grab – you can just have a bin of assorted canned foods, fresh foods, socks, just different household items, and you sort of ask the students, did this come from a farm, a factory or a store, and you sort of have either like a basket or a sort of decorated box that illustrates this. And a lot of kids – like I said, this is really maybe for more younger students, but you know maybe they sort like socks and cotton balls like at the store 'cause that's where they see those being purchased, maybe they put canned foods at the factory and then they put eggs at the farm. Essentially you're gonna show them that everything comes from the farm, and so showing the importance of understanding our agricultural history and understanding why farms are important and why we want to support those, so this is sort of a pretty fun little activity that we use to introduce the importance of farming at the farm tours, but I think that teachers can incorporate this into their classes as well just as a way of getting students to think about farms and their importance to us. If you're able to book a farm tour and go on these things, these are great experiences that make environmental, agricultural and nutritional concepts come to life, they can easily meet curriculum by sort of looking at these different aspects that you can incorporate, and if you are able to tour a farm or work with a farm, they probably work with you on specifics, they'd probably be happy to have a group coming out to see them if they offer that sort of farm tour. But science and math, you need to talk about food webs, life cycles, habitat, soil exploration, watershed health, photosynthesis, collecting data, right, and this can be made more or less difficult depending on the grade level. Language arts and English, work on like a scavenger hunt that kids would have to kind of figure out, what's a vegetable that's yellow? What's a vegetable that you know has a perfect flower on it? Teaching them sort of biology in addition to sort of environmental awareness. Writing letters to farmers, vocabulary development, and then nutrition and health I think is really where this comes in a lot. So they start to understand farm fresh foods, the importance of maybe how to grocery shop, how to find things, and just a physical activity. Maybe you're able to bring in a school garden, so in Denton we have sort of a program with the schools that can support teachers that want to bring in a school garden, and I'll talk a little bit about it. But bringing in a school garden can be a great way that – and I think a lot of schools have started to catch onto this and there's grants available, there's Seed grants available and things like that. But if it's something that you're first thinking about, just thinking about the workload of it and the volunteers that might be required and the funding for it. Typically vegetable gardens might be a little bit more high maintenance but you're gonna get a lot of those nutritional educational opportunities through it. Pollinator gardens are really great, they can be very colorful, students get to learn about insects and Monarchs and these things and they're kind of more like medium maintenance, and then if you had a native garden with sort of all north Texas plants that might be a little bit lower maintenance and you can still incorporate in some of the the pollinator aspects and things like that. So anyone can bring a garden into their school, we wanna support teachers that wanna bring in environmental aspects into their classroom, you just have to sorta find a space and talk with your school administration. I hope that most school administrations can get on board with these things, but I understand that sometimes there's a lot of paperwork or things can have a lot of momentum and then if one person steps out you have to kind of figure out how to keep that momentum moving. Setting a goal and deciding what you want to accomplish and figuring out the maintenance of it. Luckily you've got an ongoing resource of students who would help provide maintenance and volunteering, but some of those first steps you have to get through some of the sort of the the red tape to get to it. But I think more and more administrations are starting to realize the importance of supporting those programs and seeing how these lesson ideas can be brought into the classroom. So bringing teaching outside, but also bringing gardening and the environment inside. So in the language arts we can talk about poetry, creative writing, they can talk about life cycles. Also the aspect of meditation and mindfulness, I think that this is something that teachers are starting to incorporate just with all of the you know cultural aspects going on, everything that students are hearing you know from their parents and news and just sort of the stress that even really young elementary school students can feel. I know most

[audio malfunction] sort of elementary school teacher friends try to incorporate mindfulness and meditation into their class, especially if a student is having a difficult time. In the social studies we can talk about just different environments, we can talk about economics, change over time and specific scientists. In math you can sort of get more specific in measuring things, incorporating those processes, and I think these can all sort of translate depending on the grade level. And in science, ecology, biology, geography, geology, so incorporating all of those sort of sciences into it as well. So at Clear Creek we have the Denton ISD field trips, we bring out 2nd, 4th and 5th graders to Clear Creek. In the beginning it was sort of self guided, they just kinda like went on hikes and they had little science journals. Now, with the help of the local master naturalists they have a much more intensive sort of stations that they go to and they get a really great, all encompassing sort of understanding of the flora, the plants, they get to go on a hike, they learn about the mammals, reptiles, amphibians, they get to see living animals, they get to see pelts, so they get to see a lot of these different elements. We also work with Sustainable Schools, that's the program that promotes teachers being involved in this, and so it's a collaboration with the city of Denton and the nature center, Sustainable Schools basically awards points to teachers and they can accumulate those to get grant money to do some kind of sustainable project in their school, and so coming out to Clear Creek is a certain amount of points, starting a recycling program for your school is a certain amount of points, except most of those have them, you know. But just bringing in different sort of speakers or programs, you can get points from Sustainable Schools and then you might be awarded grant funding. So in 2018 we served 4,500 students, bringing in 2,100 in the spring, 2,300 in the fall. They have science journals that we've printed English and Spanish, topics include weather and erosion, mammals, reptiles and guided hikes, and we bring in Title I schools throughout the district. The Denton school district is a really weird geography, and so some schools are you know right by the nature center and they're used to that, other schools come from like 30 or 40 minutes away on a bus, but they're still all within Denton ISD. So we get a lot of different income levels and a lot of different schools and sort of teaching styles within those schools come in, and it's important that we motivate the teachers, because some teachers want to be there and some don't, or it's a substitute there and they didn't know that that's what they were signing up for, and so having these programs has really helped the program – having master naturalists has really helped the program become I think really great, for students and educators alike. So here's just some pictures from the program, master naturalists have hands on learning opportunities and staff helps to facilitate that. Sustainable Schools is the program I've already been talking about, but it basically allows them to earn points for teaching lessons about recycling waste, presentations by city staff, and incorporating that into their curriculum. So SCRAP, the creative reuse center, we – like I've said, we kinda host field trips, camps, birthday parties, for adults we do workshops, teacher training and field trips for college students also. We're starting to get involved with universities that want to incorporate material reuse into their syllabi, and so I've been working with a professor in the like the digital fabrications department and the art department, and she's gonna be like incorporating reuse into her curriculum, so we've been discussing how we can sort of work together with the students. Field trips involve us providing creative reuse information and a craft for students to participate in. We can really cater this to the needs of the students, the age, if there's specific requests, if there's – you know we try to make it to where all the crafts and the lessons are inclusive and it involves the students and and so that they see what they can create with reused materials. So in 2018 – 2019 school year we reached 198 students from Title I schools and over 200 students in Denton, so we primarily go out to Title I schools, that's part of sort of our affordable mission. We also offer scholarships and this past year was our 20th year anniversary as an organization and so we offered free field trips, so we were able to go out to communities that wouldn't typically have been able to maybe access our resources. Camp SCRAP is a lot of fun, we host these during the public school holidays, so we try to line up our camp whenever the schools are closed and we offer sort of opportunities for students 1st to 6th grade, and then we offer a team camp and we're talking about an adult camp too. But so kids get to invent, make, create and bring these creative ideas to life, each day staff sort of mixes things up, they get a free create time period where they just get to make whatever they want and that is where they get so creative and they make really interesting projects. One student in summer camp made like a giant box of a video game, like a fighting – like a fighting video game, but it was physical and it was kinetic, it moved, it worked, it was great, and then he ended up just kept on making them and his parents were like, we can't get him to stop, he just keeps making these boxes. So that's really great, they had to like find ways to store them. All reuse, all using like cardboard and stuff. So like I said, we award scholarships, and that's as a non-profit, we can accept donations and a lot of those donations goes towards our scholarship programs. Coming up we have some camps, and these are just to sort of show the themes that we work on. In the summertime we would alternate our weeks of doing art camp and then ecology camp, and so you'd have a focus on learning about art, always involving crafting and reuse, but then during ecology week we would teach about specific environmental issues. We have Earth, art camp, outer space, under the sea, we're working on other programs. In the adult education we try to bring in projects where adults and kids can learn about up-cycling, and so we did a crochet 101, we do sewing 101 classes, we have a holiday card making workshop, bookmaking, a little plug about we're trying to – we're doing a paper making workshop at Dallas Maker Space this Sunday, so there's still space to sign up, you'll get to learn to make your own paper, that paper can be used in all sorts of different craft opportunities and it's pretty cool to see how paper's made. So adult education is sort of a way for adults to learn about creative crafting processes, but we also wanna teach like practical things, so like how to create a reusable market bag, how to create a reusable produce bag, how to incorporate these things into just your everyday living so that you can practice the sustainable behaviors that you want to. We also do teacher training, like I said, to provide teachers resources with what are some craft project ideas. Maybe they can bring a resource or a reuse station into their classroom. We did a field trip of art education majors and their project was about having sort of a just a little tray like this where you've got all these different crafting items, and then that way kids are always able to sort of express themselves and you have those materials available, it's not something that they have to buy or that their parent has to buy, it's something that is available to them, but we also want that to be affordable for the educator, we also know teachers are working on thin thin budgets, and how do we how do we sort of cross that and provide this affordable aspect to reuse? We do free create times, and coming up at the end of November we're doing a buy nothing, craft everything day on traditional Black Friday, and so trying to get people to think about consumption, trying to get people to think about how they can reduce their consumption during times when culture and society is really telling us we need to do that, even you know like people don't really go out and shop as much on Black Friday, but they shop online, and so it's still it's still promoting that, there's still people that are receiving those orders and having to to work to get that content out to people. So coming in and instead of instead of focusing on that, coming in and making a gift, coming in and crafting or just taking a break from all of that holiday stuff that that happens, and so trying to use our mission and our space to inspire people and provide a welcoming space that people can feel like they can create without having to break the bank or it's not a space for that. So creative reuse as a way of sort of connecting our community. So in summary, we try to really teach the four R's of sustainability and this is sort of what like you know, we all want to reduce our consumption, I think as we start to tap into this, we do that, and then we want to reuse things, recycling is great but we hear a lot about sort of the down – the negatives of it or the difficulties of it, as we have so much stuff to recycle, and then rock, how do we sort of educate kids about composting and reducing waste in that way? So we like to teach the four R's of sustainability, and really we focus on that reuse, but also the reduce element you know, I mean we sustain on the generosity of people that donate items to us, but it is amazing how many completely new materials with a Hobby Lobby or Michael's sticker we get, and so people are buying these things, they don't even use them, they spend a lot of money on that stuff, and then it's for one reason or another, they don't have that but somebody out there is gonna really benefit from being able to do that or a student can complete their project or a mom is able to keep their kid busy on a rainy day. So just seeing the importance of reuse, because while reducing our consumption is definitely a goal, we have these things, we're gonna we're gonna continue to consume these things. So just some sort of tips or ideas that I've had over the years from working in these organizations, is that we want environmental education, creative reuse and sustainability to be accessible and inclusive, and that is sort of the forefront of today's sustainability summit so that's really great, all of the social equity tracks and how I think all of the tracks have brought this in in some way or another, that we really need to focus on how to make these spaces accessible to everybody, because sustainability is something we all have to participate in. So find ways to make it affordable and available and interesting for everybody, and then what's great about sustainability is that it is highly adaptable, and so you can just adapt these to whatever you need it for. It can be that you just want to teach about recycling in the classroom or you want your students to be eating healthier snacks and so you teach them about sort of farm fresh foods. So the thing about sustainability is that it can be incorporated in in so many different ways that it can be highly adaptable, but this also adds diversity to you as an educator, you get to mix things up in your curriculum, and the students get to benefit from that as well and they pick up on our excitement about things, and so if we're really excited about bringing in sustainability into our lessons, the students get excited about that too. The curriculum can be made more simple or complex, depending on grade level, learning objectives and student goals, and a lot of this research and topics, it naturally leads to activities, hands on learning, getting outside and multidisciplinary practices, so it's really great to be able to tie in all of those aspects in sustainability education. Other helpful tips, like I said, the curriculum can be adapted, so you know kind of don't be shy or if there's something that you're really passionate about, focus on that, because that's that's something you probably have a lot of knowledge about as you've researched it, and so if you're really passionate about recycling, I mean bring that in and educate students about that sort of whole cycle of it and the importance of it and what is the most sort of up to date information. In general, I've seen that it helps to have stations or categories, so not only just with students' attention span, but just kind of having that as an available resource so that students can understand variety of information involved in sustainability and that the ways that they learn, the unique ways that they learn can all be embraced at once. So by having, even if you have like a little reuse materials station, having all these different types of materials, you'll see what students kind of tap into, or at the nature center, having a station for art but they're still learning something about sustainability or they're learning about ecology, or having a station with mammals 'cause kids really wanna touch fur, or having a station with reptiles because some of those kids really like, you know, scales, and so having all those different sort of categories or stations helps so that every student sort of hopefully taps into something that sparks or inspires them, as well as showing the sort of intrinsic biodiversity of sustainability, and then if a student is having difficulty, at SCRAP we say that we focus on redirecting rather than reprimanding, and so if a student is just having a hard time with attention or they're just having a bad day, trying to redirect them, because if they get reprimanded while you're trying to teach environmental education or sustainability, they're gonna kinda have that like negative connection to it, and so redirecting students to where they understand you know how to find an aspect that will cultivate or direct their energy in a way that will get them motivated to learn about it. And that a lot of times other students you know just just want that student to benefit as well, so we try to always redirect students so that they are able to find something about that sustainable lesson that positively impacts them. So educating students, this was this great hike that came out in Denton and this was a lot of these students' first time hiking, and all I did was kind of hike them up to a pollinator garden, talked about native plants, and then showed them some turtles, but they were all so excited to have been able to do that, they made me this poster with all the animals that they wanted to see, I think it just you know it can be that instant of really changing their minds and getting them to think about it, and the you know they they feel so motivated to sort of continue learning about that. So I think sustainability topics can be – if we feel like we don't have the training for it, it can feel like something difficult, but really there's a lot of accessible information about sustainability or environmental education now that I think that we're able to bring that into sort of our curriculums and inspire students in that way. Thank you so much.

​​