Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Controversial “Green” Environmental Topics at Merritt College

Controversial “Green” Environmental Topics at Merritt College

Will the Bay Area get flooded, go broke, lose a generation to jails, burn again, or become green and sustainable? Merritt College’s Environmental Management and Technology faculty will be addressing these questions beginning August 26 at the Oakland hills campus. “There are indeed serious problems, but there are also substantial solutions to them.” Says Robin Freeman. Coordinator of the Program’s free and low cost courses, lectures and workshops

How do you find a “green” job? How dangerous is global warming and how does it affect the Bay Area? What in human nature allows civilizations to repeatedly collapse and what will give hope a plan? Will the Bay Area be able to plan its way out of social, economic and environmental crisis?

“Most in the new rush towards green products and jobs are relative newcomers. Merritt College, with the state’s oldest Community College environmental program has 47 years of experience. Our Adjunct Professors are practicing professionals and know the difference between greenwashing bubbles and what will last.” Freeman points out.

“Politics rewards aggression”, says Professor Freeman. Can the skills which make winners solve our social, financial and environmental problems? Urban Planners, Green Builders, Social Psychologists and Philosophers, Tree Experts, Environmental Scientists, and Educators take these questions on in lectures and hands-on projects.

Research Released on Civilization’s Impact
Informed by the newly to be released research findings of the David R. Brower, Ronald V. Dellums Institute for Sustainable Policy Studies, upcoming courses explore how bad these problems are. “Workshops and field trips will discuss the solutions that we have, and how to connect the dots to put it all together.” Freeman continues “For example, how can our East Bay trees be managed as an urban forest for beauty, increase calm, reduce fire threat, increase clean water and air, provide beautiful wood and recreation and biodiversity? Do we know how to and have the organizations and experts? Yes. Can we create jobs and money flow? Yes. Are we doing these things? Only on a very limited basis.”

The city is civilization’s largest artifact. How does human nature affect the world? Is the social and environmental collapse of urban empires inevitable? Explore with a learning theorist and an urban planner how civilizations collapse and how to plan our way out of this cycle.

Faculty include Green building designer Leslie Geathers, Urban Planner David Ralston PhD, Fire Ecologist Maria Morales, Watershed restorationist, Martha Berthelsen, Environmental Justice expert Nehanda Imara, Natural Historian Ron Felzer among others.

Environmental Writing Course Starts September 5
Every environmental field includes writing. In this introductory course you will explore writing about place, your own experience, personal essay, report, technical, publicity and informational or interpretive writing. You will receive valuable feedback from your fellow writers. Past students have published in the college newspaper, the Economist, and a published a novel. No experience is necessary, and writers with experience are welcome. The course satisfies major and certificate requirements.

The course is taught by Freeman, who is Co-Director of the Brower Dellums Institute for Sustainable Policy Studies, is an editor with Conservation Press, has published in environmental journals, written textbooks, and co-authored the Sierra Club Yodeler series of interviews which include Linus Pauling, Pete Seegar, Daniel Ellsberg, Ronald V Dellums, Carl Anthony, David Brower, Hazel Henderson, and Dr. Helen Caldicott.

For schedules and information contact www.ecomerritt.org


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