Houston Environmental News Update July 17, 2019

Apollo and the Environmental Movement, Greater Houston Environmental Summit, Green Film: Ay Mariposa, State of the Bay Symposium proposals, GreenBiz 2019 Perspectives, Green Jobs, and more

This Saturday, July 20, the world celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, the culminating event in the United States’ first foray into the era of space research and exploration, which the U.S. and many other nations continue to this day. The Apollo missions also produced one of the most famous pictures in space exploration, Earthrise. This photograph, taken during the Apollo 8 mission in 1968, shows our planet from the point of view of the moon, floating alone in the inky blackness of space. Apollo 8 pilot Jim Lovell remarked: “The vast loneliness is awe-inspiring and it makes you realize just what you have back there on Earth.” That image of Earth, small and vulnerable, sparked a wave of environmental consciousness, as people realized that Earth was the only home they had and it deserved protection.

On January 1, 1970, the United States created the National Environmental Policy Act. On April 22, Americans celebrated the first (and still largest) Earth Day with about 20 million people participating. On July 9, the Environmental Protection Agency was established and on October 2, NOAA (National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration) was created.1972 sparked a wave of environmental legislation, including the Marine Mammal Protection Act and the Clean Water Act. You can learn more about the history of the environmental movement here.

Here are a few events hosted by local organizations to celebrate the moon landing:

  • On Saturday, July 20, the George Observatory, located in Brazos Bend State Park, will host activities from 1-11 p.m., including speakers and stargazing. More information can be found at hmns.org.
  • The Houston Museum of Natural Science is hosting a special exhibition, “Moon” by Luke Jerram, to mark the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11. Visitors will be able to explore the moon’s surface and the International Space Station by using immersive virtual reality technology.
  • Discovery Green will host a special event on Saturday from 6-10 p.m. Activities will include musical performances, interactive exhibits provided by NASA, and a screening of the documentary Apollo 11. See more of the schedule at discoverygreen.com.
  • On Saturday, from 1-4 p.m., the Lunar and Planetary Institute will host a special family-friendly event called “Apollo 11: Looking Back to Move Forward.” For more details, visit lpi.usra.edu.
  • Sugar Land Town Square will host a celebration on Saturday from 7-10 p.m. featuring a special prerecorded video message from the International Space Station and a short documentary recounting the historic moon landing and Houston’s role in the historic event. For more information, see the Facebook event.
  • Of course, the biggest celebration will take place at Space Center Houston. On July 20, there will be a full day of activities, counting down to Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon. The event will include an outdoor concert, Apollo-era flight controller presentations, pop-up science labs, and NASA tram tours. Find more information and purchase tickets at spacecenter.org.


Greater Houston Environmental Summit: Friday, August 2, 2019

Please join us for our annual Greater Houston Environmental Summit on Friday, August 2, 2019, from 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m. at the United Way of Greater Houston’s Community Resource Center. In addition to excellent presentations, we will again offer small-format table talks. Details and registration will be available soon. The theme this year is the Sustainable Development Goals set forth by the United Nations. Early registration through July 26, 2019. Register on eventbrite.

Houston Green Films: Ay Mariposa

The Houston Green Film for August 21 will be “Ay! Mariposa!”, a documentary film about two women and a rare community of butterflies standing on the front lines in a battle against the US-Mexico border wall. We will be joined by the director of the National Butterfly Center. Upcoming films: September 18–“Hot Grease“, October 16– Wild About Houston Green Film Festival.

Environmental Educators Exchange: Pearland’s New Delores Fenwick Nature Center

The next quarterly meeting of the Environmental Educators’ Exchange will be on Wednesday, August 7, 2019, at 4:00 p.m. (Note different time.) Location: Pearland’s new Delores Fenwick Nature Center. Free registration on Eventbrite.

Earth Day Houston

Earth Day Houston, part of the 50th worldwide observance, will be held at Discovery Green on Sunday, April 19, 2020.

Candidate Forums and Questionnaires

7 days of being engaged in the community

Are you organizing a candidate forum or questionnaire for the November 2019 election? CEC is gathering information about election-related activities within our environmental communities. Let us know what you are planning, and we’ll keep you in the loop. CEC is interested in either hosting, coordinating, and/or supporting the efforts of local environmental nonprofits leading up to the election. Send your comments to [email protected] Note: the filing deadline for the November City of Houston elections is August 26, 2019. We have heard that CEER Houston will be hosting a mayoral candidate forum on Saturday, September 21, 2019.

Interested in serving on the CEC Board or a Committee?

CEC is seeking individuals who might be interested in joining our board of directors in January 2020, or volunteering to serve on one of our committees starting this year. Over the next few months, we are hosting information sessions for prospective board and committee members to learn more about the commitment and opportunities. Upcoming sessions include the evenings of July 29, September 23, and October 15. For more information (including directions to our top secret world headquarters), please email [email protected]

Scroll down to read notes from our member organizations and the community, or view the emailed version of the newsletter, which includes a green job listing.

Continue reading

Armand Bayou Nature Center seeks Pontoon Eco-Tour Captain

Armand Bayou Nature Center is seeking an experienced mariner who is passionate about sea safety and education to join our team as a Captain. As a member of ABNC’s team, the Captain will work with the Chief Naturalist and Lead Captain to ensure safe and efficient operation of the tour vessel Bayou Ranger while being an active Captain and educator for weekend tours on the Armand Bayou Coastal Preserve. For a full job description and application instructions, visit static1.squarespace.com.

Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary seeks eIntern

Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary (under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) is seeking a creative individual to develop and design images, posts, and other social media products that can help people learn about this unique place, what it protects, and the science and recreational opportunities it provides. The selected FGBNMS eIntern will work on projects for ten hours a week from September through May. Visit the VSFS website for a full position description, then apply through USAJOBS by July 31, 2019.