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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.

The Great American Eclipse

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You may want to skip work Monday, August 21. Or at least the afternoon. On that day, the moon will pass in front of the sun, creating an 87% partial solar eclipse at about 1:20 p.m. in the Chicagoland area. In the ensuing darkness, Jupiter, Venus, Mercury, and Mars may all be visible.

Those interested in seeing the full, 100% total eclipse are welcome to drive to the “path of totality” in southern Illinois or any other state along the diagonal swath that starts in Oregon in the morning and finishes in South Carolina by afternoon.

A cloudy day could ruin visibility anywhere along the route, which is why some eclipse chasers plan to camp out in Wyoming, where the likelihood of clear skies is best.

The “path of totality” has a width of 71 miles and just happens to stay within American borders all the way from the Pacific to the Atlantic Oceans, hence the moniker, “The Great American Eclipse.”

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What Can One Person Do about Climate Change?

Seth Wynes/Kimberly Nicholas, Environmental Research Letters, 2017

High Impact Personal Choices to Reduce our Contribution to Climate Change

A recently published scientific peer-reviewed study identified 4 high-impact lifestyle choices that produce the greatest reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. The comprehensive study analyzed 39 peer-reviewed articles, carbon calculators and government sources to quantify the most high-impact personal lifestyle choices in developed countries.

“Bringing all of these studies side by side gives us confidence we’ve identified actions that make a big difference.  Those of us who want to step forward on climate need to know how our actions can have the greatest possible impact.  This research is about helping people make more informed choices.”  — lead author, Seth Wynes

The study’s findings show that the actions that would have the greatest impact on an individual’s greenhouse gas emissions are:

  1. Eating a plant-based diet (saves 0.8 tons of CO2 equivalent per year)
  2. Flying less: One  transatlantic flight (or equivalent) avoided per year (saves 1.8 tons of CO2 equivalent)
  3. Living car free for a year saves 2.4 tons of CO2 equivalent
  4. Having one fewer child would save 58.6 tons of CO2 equivalent based on current emission rates. However reducing overall national emissions could make the climate impact of an additional child significantly less.

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Native Garden Tour

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Are you curious about native gardening?  Have you been longing to see some real, live examples and talk to the experienced gardeners who created them? You’ll have an opportunity to do just that from 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 6.

“Birds, Bees and Butterflies: A Native Garden Tour,” sponsored by West Cook Wild Ones, the Interfaith Green Network and Green Community Connections, offers you an opportunity to visit 15 private and public gardens in Oak Park and River Forest that are brimming with life and beauty. The host gardeners are excited to walk you through these treasured spaces. Each stop on the tour is unique, reflecting each gardener’s interests.

You’ll meet a mix of master gardeners, passionate hobbyists and professional landscapers who lovingly maintain these emerald places not only for their own enjoyment, but to contribute to the health of our local ecosystem. Bring your curiosity and your questions. Whether you are just getting started or have an established native garden of your own, new discoveries await you.

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Join the Movement to Reduce Single-Use Plastics

We’ve seen the images of seagulls caught in plastic bags, microscopic plastic beads in plankton, and the Great Norther Pacific garbage patch. Plastic is so ubiquitous that cleaning up our enormous mess sometimes seems hopeless. But three opportunities are available for those with a heart to make a difference.

A Plastic Ocean

“A Plastic Ocean” will screen from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, July 28, at Euclid Avenue Methodist Church, 405 S. Euclid Ave., in Oak Park. Conversation and action opportunities will follow. This screening is open to the public with a suggested donation of $5 per person.

Watch the trailer:  plasticoceans.org/watch-trailer/

“A Plastic Ocean” shows the heartbreaking impact of plastic pollution on marine life and offers potential solutions.

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Green Your Block Party!

Go green at your next block party! Demonstrations on butterfly gardening, edible gardening, organic lawn care, and composting are among the activities offered by Green Community Connections and PlanItGreen to help bring a sustainability focus to your neighborhood event. More info on how to schedule a green event is available at www.greencommunityconnections.org/green-guides

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

    

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