• 1

Who We Are

Green Community Connections provides a place to tap into conversations about sustainability issues and to identify concrete steps you can take. We believe change is both necessary and possible and the best way to get there is together. Learn more About Us.

Natural Capital: Hope for the World



We’ve all heard of capital. It’s king, right? Plus, there’s venture capital: wealth that creates new businesses. Human capital? Yep, we know that by the sweat on our brow.

And then there’s natural capital. Ever heard of it?  Paddy Woodworth, author of Our “Once and Future Planet,” will come to Oak Park to help us understand the concept of restoring natural capital and how this idea is transforming the way the world values and uses nature.

Here’s a preview, but please come see him speak at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 10, at First United Church of Oak Park (848 Lake Street, next to the Oak Park Public Library). This West Cook Wild Ones meeting is free and open to the public.

As a long-time environmental journalist and author, the aptly named Woodworth has traveled internationally to discover amazing projects and meet leading movers and shakers. His talk next Tuesday promises to be a lively, wide-ranging discussion.

Continue reading

Kids Learn Filmmaking from Professionals


Vadim Ivanov/Shutterstock

Middle and elementary school students can learn about video, lighting, audio and editing at two Young Filmmakers Workshops from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays, Dec. 6 (grades 6 to 8) and Dec. 13 (grades 3 to 5). Two Chicago-area film industry professionals, director Andrew Freer and editor Lucy Coria, will lead the workshops. They have planned a “hands-on, learning by doing” experience for participants.

Each workshop will take place at The Depot, 401 Thatcher Ave., in River Forest. Registration is through the River Forest Park District at a cost of $25 for residents and $30 for non-residents. Participants should bring a nut-free sack lunch; water and snack will be provided. Please register here (with code #2216.220 or #2216.221)

Green Community Connections and One Earth Film Festival are sponsoring the workshops with the hope that some/all participants will enter the annual Young Filmmakers Contest. The Contest challenge is to create a three to eight-minute film or a 45-second animation about one of six issues related to climate change and sustainability: energy, food, transportation, waste, water, or open space and ecosystems.

Continue reading

The Good Tax: Carbon Fee & Dividend


Climate scientist and activist James Hansen

In 2009, climate scientist Dr. James Hansen published his first book, “Storms of My Grandchildren,” on the topic of climate science and his involvement in various governmental efforts over the previous two decades to craft a response to what he described as “the greatest threat civilization faces.” Dr. Hansen is perhaps the world’s most prominent climate scientist. Trained as an atmospheric physicist, he worked at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies for 45 years, and was its head from 1981 until his retirement in 2013. He is known for his groundbreaking body of work, and for his outspoken warnings regarding the possibility of “tipping points” being reached in the climate system that could lead to runaway global warming.

Dr. Hansen is also known for his climate activism—which has led to his arrest on a number of occasions for civil disobedience—and for his advocacy of various public policies aimed at mitigating climate change.

Continue reading

Make a Measurable Difference by Being a “Green Guide”




PlanItGreen is launching a campaign to make a big reduction in the amount of material we send to the landfill. The PlanItGreen sustainability plan outlines a goal to divert 50 percent of Oak Park and River Forest “waste” away from landfills by 2015 and into compost and recycling, where it becomes a resource.

Right now, Oak Park and River Forest together are diverting 37 percent. That’s not bad, but we believe we can do better – working together – to meet or exceed our goal.  Central to this initiative will be a new communications network called Green Guides.

Green Guides are residents who will communicate with their neighbors, to point them in the right direction for resources on waste reduction, water conservation, energy efficiency, and more,” said Jen Nelson, Zero Waste program manager for Seven Generations Ahead. You can be a Green Guide for your building, your block, or your neighborhood (a cluster of adjacent blocks).

“We are not expecting Green Guides to be experts in any or all areas. They will simply be links, connecting their neighbors to green resources in our communities.”  

Continue reading

Thank you to our Presenting Sponsors from the One Earth Film Festival.