SUNY Sustainability Conference
Sustainability educator, PSC chair to keynote conference

On Monday and Tuesday, the college will host SUNY’s annual Sustainability Conference, featuring guest speakers from Yale-National University of Singapore and the state Public Service Commission.

Michael Maniates, professor of social sciences and head of environmental studies at Yale-NUS, will make an opening keynote presentation titled “Why Environmentalists Rarely Get Invited to Parties (and How We Can Change That)” at 1 p.m. Monday, Sept. 29, in the Marano Campus Center auditorium.

To close the conference, Audrey Zibelman, commissioner and chair of the PSC, will present “Reforming the Energy Vision (REV)” at 1:15 p.m. Tuesday in the auditorium.

The SUNY Sustainability Conference annually brings together educators, administrators and others to share information about environmental innovations and issues. This year’s program features presentations, panels and case studies on a wide variety of topics, including the Farm to SUNY program in which SUNY Oswego is playing a prominent role.

Jamie Adams, Oswego’s sustainability programming coordinator, will appear with representatives of University at Albany, SUNY New Paltz, SUNY Oneonta and the American Farmland Trust’s Farm-to-Institution New York State partnership. A grant from the Farmland Trust helps fund the SUNY program, which is charged with increasing student awareness of and demand for local produce on campuses and in dining facilities.

Katherine Spector of Oswego’s mathematics faculty and Grace Maxon of the Office of Learning Services will make a presentation on the upcoming permaculture living lab planned for a 3/4-acre plot between the Shineman Center and Lee Hall.

Other conference sessions will cover on-campus biodiesel production, residential and farm-scale hydroelectricity, solar photovoltaic project development and other initiatives around the State University system.

Maniates’ current work focuses on competing paths to sustainable consumption, “next generation” programs in environmental studies and the environmental politics of sacrifice.  He has co-founded two award-winning environmental organizations, directed a semester of study on a floating university and consulted widely with colleges and universities on sustainability initiatives.

Zibelman sits on the state Energy Planning Board and is chair of the state Board on Electric Generation Siting and the Environment, state Energy Research and Development Authority, Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative Inc., state Disaster Preparedness Commission and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management Task Force.

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(Posted: Sep 19, 2014)