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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.

A Posthumous Appreciation for an 86-year-old American Elm Tree

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As I left church a couple of weeks ago, I noticed a huge base of a tree trunk on the parkway of our church property. I felt a mix of surprise, anger and sadness. Clearly it was a very large tree that I hadn’t really paid much attention to. In the coming weeks, I started seeing more signs of other trees that had been cut down. These images of previously large, beautiful trees that had stood for years, now shaved off at the ground haunted me, and I wanted to know more.

I asked a knowledgeable friend and then finally called the village forester, Rob Sproule. He told me that “my” American Elm had been identified as having the symptoms of Dutch Elm disease and therefore had been marked for removal. He also shared with me more information about the village’s parkway tree maintenance program, and I learned that, Village foresters must continually monitor trees for damage, disease and insect infestations, with an eye toward public safety. Most trees also have a set life span. Removing trees and planting new ones is a basic part of the life cycle of an urban forest.”

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Citizens for Safe and Vibrant Madison Street

Madison St TrafficActive Transportation Letter invites support for plans to narrow and improve Madison street:

After years of outreach, public meetings and planning, Oak Park is moving forward with plans to narrow Madison and make it a more pleasant and safe street that is also more inviting for new development.  The project has been approved, but a few residents are speaking out against the project and trying to persuade the village board to reverse course. It’s important for the village board to hear from us.

Please take action by clicking here to join OP Citizens for a Safe and Vibrant Madison and signing the letter below to the village board to demonstrate your support for these changes. The coalition will also work to ensure that the village makes the most of this important investment.

Also, please attend the Jun 13, 7PM, Village Board meeting to show your support.

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Your Input is Needed at the Oak Park/River Forest CMAP Forum!

Photo courtesy of Steven Vance: Comments on what the plan should consider

Photo courtesy of Steven Vance: Comments on what the plan should consider

The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP), the official planning agency for the 7 counties that make up the Chicagoland region, is looking for your perspective on what the region should look like in 2050 as it draws up a new plan to succeed the GO TO 2040 plan.  The federal government requires every urbanized area of 50,000 or more inhabitants to create a regional plan.

Now in development, ON TO 2050 will be the next comprehensive plan for metropolitan Chicago. Our region has changed in significant ways since the GO TO 2040 plan, was adopted unanimously in 2010 by leaders from across the seven counties. Collaborative efforts at the local, state, and federal levels have helped to implement GO TO 2040 recommendations, yet difficult realities persist even as new challenges continue to emerge.

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An Evening with Thoreau

An Evening with Thoreau2

Bring a chair and food to share. More information at this link.

Breaking Free from Fossil Fuels

Photo courtesy of Bob Simpson.

Photo courtesy of Bob Simpson.

During the first half of May, tens of thousands of people on six continents held protest actions under the banner of “Break Free From Fossil Fuels.” Called for by 350.org and organized by hundreds of regional and national environmental and social justice organizations, each action was unique, but the purpose was the same: to keep fossil fuels in the ground and build a just transition to a new kind of 100% renewable economy … and do it now.

In Germany, over 4,000 people shut down one of Europe’s largest lignite (think soft and dirty) coal mines for over 48 hours through successive acts of civil disobedience. In Washington state and Albany, New York, protesters blocked oil trains around refineries and rail transit points, resulting in scores of arrests.

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

    

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