The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and the City of Waco will present the Green Communities Conference on Sept. 14.
The program will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Baylor Research and Innovation Collaborative, 100 Research Parkway, Waco. Onsite check-in and breakfast will begin at 8 a.m. An optional social hour/reception will be at 6 p.m.
The event is free, but advance registration is required at https://tx.ag/GreenCommunities. Each attendee will receive a reusable tote and ceramic mug.
“I think this conference offers some interesting topics and a different point of view than what most are familiar or knowledgeable with,” said Shane McLellan, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension agriculture and natural resources agent, McLennan County.
He said the City of Waco and the Keep Waco Beautiful and Waco Sustainability Network groups have worked tirelessly to make the event possible.
“I’ve worked alongside Mark Keeley, City of Waco compliance manager for watershed protection, to help bring this Green Communities Conference to our area, and I hope people will take advantage of this unique educational program,” McLellan said.
According to the event website, the conference creates an intentional space to get involved with a diverse group of “doers” who want to see real, effective change and unpack, understand and take action toward a more sustainable, inclusive future. Participants can join other problem solvers and aspiring change-makers from across Texas to help advance a culture of sustainability.
Green communities conference topics
The conference will cover a wide range of issues. Participants may select their topics and sessions online when registering. The expert speakers and panelists will be discussing the following:
- The fundamental science of climate change.
- Organic, regenerative, sustainable – what they mean and where do we fit in.
- Commercial composting.
- Carbon reduction opportunities in communities.
- Watersheds and resiliency.
- Engaging children and families in nature.
- Sustainability in business.
- Economic impacts and ramifications of waterborne litter.
- Sustainable rangeland management and integrated pest management.
- Impact of climate change on exposure to endocrine disrupting compounds.
- Growing green communities – spirituality, culture and narrative.
- Navigating the interconnected landscape of sustainability.
- Conservation easement protection and private landowners.
- Cultivating a regenerative food culture.
- Going beyond charity for food justice.
Presenters will include AgriLife Extension experts Sonja Swiger, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension entomologist and associate professor in the Department of Entomology, Stephenville; Bob Whitney, AgriLife Extension organic crop specialist, Stephenville; and Ward Ling, Texas Water Resources Institute program specialist and watershed coordinator, Bryan-College Station.
A complete schedule of speakers and presentations is available at the Green Communities Conference website.