Houston Environmental News Update October 20, 2021

Environmental Justice, EPA Pollution Prevention Roundtable, Avian Affair, Drug Take Back Day, KBR Kids Day, Bike Around the Bay, Climathon, Green Jobs and more

EJSCREEN map of lead paint indicators in the Houston region

This week, you have two opportunities to hear from environmental justice champions discussing EJ from a Houston perspective.

On Saturday, October 23, 2021, from 11:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m., the Coalition of Community Organizations is hosting, with the Environmental Protection Agency, an event to discuss the EPA’s Environmental Justice Screening and Mapping Tool (“EJSCREEN”). Learn about environmental risks in the community that impact you and your family, the pollutants to which you are being exposed, health risks that are impacting you and your family in the short and long term, and how to get accurate information and to report problems. Get answers to your immediate questions concerning your family’s health, housing, and economic stability. Join virtually on Google Meet, by phone at (650) 597-0087 (PIN 645 870 704#), or in person at the Carl Walker Multipurpose Center at 4300 Noble St, Bldg. B, Houston 77020. Register on Eventbrite. The speaker panel includes the following luminaries:

Later in the week, on Tuesday, October 26, 2021, at 12:30 p.m., join the Rice University Center for Environmental Studies for a Conversation with Matthew Tejada, Director of the Office of Environmental Justice at the EPA. Gisela Heffes, professor of Latin American Literature and Culture, Department of Modern and Classical Literatures and Cultures, and a member of the Faculty Steering Committee in the Center for Environmental Studies, and Joseph Campana, the William Shakespeare Professor of English and director of the Center for Environmental Studies, will moderate. This Fall 2021 Walter Isle Lecture is part of the Planet Now! lecture series.

Also of EJ interest, on Thursday, October 28, 2021, at 6:00 pm, residents of the Greater Fifth Ward are invited to join Lone Star Legal Aid for an Impact Community Meeting: Union Pacific & Environmental Sampling in Greater Fifth Ward.  Discussions will be presented by Rodrigo Cantú of Lone Star Legal Aid’s Equitable Development Initiative, Dr. Garett Sansom, MPH and Leanne Fawkes, MPH of Texas A&M University, Dr. Loren Hopkins with the Houston Health Department, and Dr. Grace Tee Lewis with Environmental Defense Fund. Learn more at lonestarlegal.org.


CEC NOTES

Professional Development Opportunities for Teachers

Engage your students with lessons outdoors or virtually. Sign up today at hereinhouston.org.


Call for submissions: Wild About Houston Green Film Festival

The CEC is proud to host the fourth annual Wild About Houston Green Film Festival this fall. CEC hopes to use this festival to tell local environmental stories, highlight the work of CEC’s member organizations, and to inspire our residents and visitors to make a difference in the environment and our quality of life. The festival will be held virtually to protect the health and safety of our community in these times. We invite you to submit a film for consideration. Films should be specific to the environment in the Houston/Gulf Coast Region, should be no more than seven minutes long, and must be of suitable quality to be shown publicly. View the Submission Guidelines, and make submissions using this Google Form.


Air Champion Social Change Scientists Global Video Contest

McMac Cx Air Champions Social Change Scientists are passionate community influencers, teachers, parents, student innovators, and activists who believe that we have a right to live, learn, work and play in places where we are allowed to know the quality of the air we breathe. Make a 30-90 second video about healthy air, and enter the Air Champions Global Video Contest for a chance to win a state-of-the-art Flow Personal Air Monitor, the chance to have your film shown at the Wild About Houston Film Festival, AND the chance to receive a $1,000 cash prize. Learn more at McMacCx.com/globalvideocontest.


Deadline Extended: Imagine a Day Without Water Video Contest

The City of Houston Public Works department invites Houston residents to participate in Imagine a Day Without Water Video Contest! This contest is designed to engage all Houstonians in the nation-wide event “Imagine a Day Without Water,” hosted by the Value of Water Campaign. Entrants should create a video–not to exceed 1-minute–exploring or depicting various aspects of what daily life might look like/be affected by an entire day without any water. Enter for the chance to win cash prizes AND the opportunity to have your films shown about the 2021 Wild About Houston Green Film Festival! View the flyer and visit houstontx.gov for more information. Submit videos by Sunday, October 28, 2021, to waterconservation@houstontx.gov.


Please scroll down to read about public engagement opportunities and notes from our member organizations and the community.

Continue reading

Houston Environmental News Update October 13, 2021

Children’s Environmental Health Day, Unplugged Adventure: Wetland Walk, Youth Conference on Environmental, Green Jobs and more

Remember how you were feeling a year ago, in October 2020? The pandemic raged and the election loomed; most of us vacillated between hope and dread. 

Through this tumultuous time, and through the decades, the CEC newsletter has continued to share information about environmental issues, events, and celebrations in the Houston/Gulf Coast region. Highlights from last year’s October 14, 2020 newsletter included Galas Galore, Wild About Houston, Low Carbon Energy Summit, Clean Waters Initiative, UH Energy Symposium, The Policy of Resilience, Big Thicket Day, Livable Places Initiative, Green Jobs, and more. 

Since 2021 is the 50th anniversary of CEC’s incorporation, we thought we might look back a little further–to October newsletters from 2016, 2011, 2006, 2001, 1996, 1991, and 1986. CEC is working to create a digital archive of our newsletters to complement the newsletters on our current website and the paper newsletters that are in our physical archives in the University of Houston Library’s special collections and at the Houston Public Library. 

We hope you enjoy the opportunity to learn about some of the environmental issues for which progress has been made, and about those issues that continue to be of great concern. 

October 12, 2016 (view on cechouston.org)

“Do you ever feel like the environmental community offers too many events in October? The plethora of opportunities to get involved is a good problem to have…” Announcements included:

  • Bayou Preservation Association’s 50th anniversary Water Quality Symposium
  • Sims Bayou Greenway groundbreaking celebration
  • Kicking off the 20-year update of the Galveston Bay Plan
  • Buffalo Bayou Partnership’s 10th annual KBR Kids Day
  • Proposed Plan for Clean Up of the San Jacinto River Waste Pits Superfund Site site

October 13, 2011 (view as PDF)

“So many choices. So little time.” Announcements included:

  • Native Plant Society of Texas Annual Symposium
  • 5th Annual Prairie Pandemonium
  • Global Climate Change and Infectious Disease
  • Bioblitz 2011: Where Everyone Counts!
  • 8th Annual Water Symposium

October 6, 2006 (view on Wayback Machine or as PDF)

  • West Loop opens after four years
  • New bird observation tower in Quintana
  • Border Walls
  • Solar Home Tour
  • Willow Waterhole
  • Accidental gas release 

October 2001 (view on Wayback Machine or as PDF)

  • Reducing Houston’s Heat Island study
  • Reflections on 9/11
  • Living with Our Watersheds & Tropical Storm Allison
  • Black bear conservation

November 1, 1996, Texas Environmental Exchange (view as PDF)

  • Special Election Edition
  • Ride to Work
  • Texas Recycles Day
  • A robust calendar of events

October 1991: Texas Environmental News Exchange (view as PDF)

  • The murky water of wetland reclamation
  • Natural pollution control
  • HouZooDoo (elephant, zebra, and rhino)
  • Sea turtles
  • Computers to monitor vehicle emissions

October 1986: CEC Newsleaf (view as PDF)

  • Texas’ first Statewide Coastal Cleanup
  • Waterfront Festival
  • Texas Legislature’s Clean Air Study Committee

CEC NOTES

Professional Development Opportunities for Teachers

Engage your students with lessons outdoors or virtually. Sign up today at hereinhouston.org.


Call for submissions: Wild About Houston Green Film Festival

The CEC is proud to host the fourth annual Wild About Houston Green Film Festival this fall. CEC hopes to use this festival to tell local environmental stories, highlight the work of CEC’s member organizations, and to inspire our residents and visitors to make a difference in the environment and our quality of life. The festival will be held virtually to protect the health and safety of our community in these times. We invite you to submit a film for consideration. Films should be specific to the environment in the Houston/Gulf Coast Region, should be no more than seven minutes long, and must be of suitable quality to be shown publicly. View the Submission Guidelines, and make submissions using this Google Form.


Air Champion Social Change Scientists Global Video Contest

McMac Cx Air Champions Social Change Scientists are passionate community influencers, teachers, parents, student innovators, and activists who believe that we have a right to live, learn, work and play in places where we are allowed to know the quality of the air we breathe. Make a 30-90 second video about healthy air, and enter the Air Champions Global Video Contest for a chance to win a state-of-the-art Flow Personal Air Monitor, the chance to have your film shown at the Wild About Houston Film Festival, AND the chance to receive a $1,000 cash prize. Learn more at McMacCx.com/globalvideocontest.


Imagine a Day Without Water Video Contest

The City of Houston Public Works department invites Houston residents to participate in Imagine a Day Without Water Video Contest! This contest is designed to engage all Houstonians in the nation-wide event “Imagine a Day Without Water,” hosted by the Value of Water Campaign. The purpose of Imagine a Day Without Water is to bring attention to the neglected water systems in America. Entrants should create a video–not to exceed 1-minute–exploring or depicting various aspects of what daily life might look like/be affected by an entire day without any water. Enter for the chance to win cash prizes AND the opportunity to have your films shown about the 2021 Wild About Houston Green Film Festival! View the flyer and visit houstontx.gov for more information. Submit videos by Sunday, October 17, 2021, to waterconservation@houstontx.gov.


Please scroll down to read about public engagement opportunities and notes from our member organizations and the community.

Continue reading

Houston Environmental News Update October 6, 2021

National Wildlife Refuge Week, 18th Annual Run in the Park, Big Thicket Day, Indigenous People’s Day, Native Plant Society Symposium, Green Jobs and more

National Wildlife Refuge Week, observed the second full week of October each year, celebrates the great network of lands and waters that conserves and protects Americans’ precious wildlife heritage.

This October – to celebrate National Wildlife Refuge Week – help wildlife and humans to thrive by taking a walk, stroll, saunter, hike, prance, trot, amble, ramble or roll for the wild. The National Wildlife Refuge System and Public Lands Alliance are hosting the Walk for the Wild 5k Challenge from October 9-16, 2021. The challenge is to get people moving a distance of 5K in nature on behalf of as many national wildlife refuges as possible; there are 568 to choose from.

The National Wildlife Refuge System, managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, provides vital habitat for thousands of native species, including Attwater Prairie Chickens, American alligators, and sea turtles. Millions of Americans visit refuges each year to enjoy fishing, hunting, hiking, and wildlife watching.

If you are in the Houston region, you are probably within about an hour drive of at least one of the refuges. You can find nearby refuges using the USFWS “Find a Wildlife Refuge” tool. Our local refuges include:

Rafinesque’s big-eared bat–
getting ready for October 31.

#walkforthewild2021 #WildlifeRefuge

Banner image: “Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge, TX,” by Adam Reeder (CC BY-NC 2.0)


CEC NOTES

Professional Development Opportunities for Teachers

Engage your students with lessons outdoors or virtually. Over 30 workshops are in the regional summer professional development calendar to connect you with local resources. Sign up today at hereinhouston.org.


Beyond Toxicity: Building a Sustainable Tomorrow For Children

On Oct. 13, 2021, from 10 a.m.-1 p.m., the CEC, Children At Risk, Texas Family Leadership Council, and Partners in Foresight will present a virtual summit called “Beyond Toxicity: Building a Sustainable Tomorrow for Children”. Join experts to discuss the impact of climate change on today’s children and next generations. This summit, sponsored by Signature Care Emergency Room, will examine environmental racism, ecological determinants of health, and sustainability, and hear from youth advocates working to build a brighter, greener future. This event is free to students, and scholarships are available to the general public. Email bderry@childrenatrisk.org to inquire. To purchase tickets, visit interland3.donorperfect.net.


Call for submissions: Wild About Houston Green Film Festival

The CEC is proud to host the fourth annual Wild About Houston Green Film Festival this fall. CEC hopes to use this festival to tell local environmental stories, highlight the work of CEC’s member organizations, and to inspire our residents and visitors to make a difference in the environment and our quality of life. The festival will be held virtually to protect the health and safety of our community in these times. We invite you to submit a film for consideration. Films should be specific to the environment in the Houston/Gulf Coast Region, should be no more than seven minutes long, and must be of suitable quality to be shown publicly. View the Submission Guidelines, and make submissions using this Google Form.


Air Champion Social Change Scientists Global Video Contest

McMac Cx Air Champions Social Change Scientists are passionate community influencers, teachers, parents, student innovators, and activists who believe that we have a right to live, learn, work and play in places where we are allowed to know the quality of the air we breathe. Make a 30-90 second video about healthy air, and enter the Air Champions Global Video Contest for a chance to win a state-of-the-art Flow Personal Air Monitor, the chance to have your film shown at the Wild About Houston Film Festival, AND the chance to receive a $1,000 cash prize. Learn more at McMacCx.com/globalvideocontest.


Imagine a Day Without Water Video Contest

The City of Houston Public Works department invites Houston residents to participate in Imagine a Day Without Water Video Contest! This contest is designed to engage all Houstonians in the nation-wide event “Imagine a Day Without Water,” hosted by the Value of Water Campaign. The purpose of Imagine a Day Without Water is to bring attention to the neglected water systems in America. Entrants should create a video–not to exceed 1-minute–exploring or depicting various aspects of what daily life might look like/be affected by an entire day without any water. Enter for the chance to win cash prizes AND the opportunity to have your films shown about the 2021 Wild About Houston Green Film Festival! View the flyer and visit houstontx.gov for more information. Submit videos by Sunday, October 17, 2021, to waterconservation@houstontx.gov.


Please scroll down to read about public engagement opportunities and notes from our member organizations and the community.

Continue reading