EnviroThursday Fall 2004

Presentations take place at 12 noon, Olin-Rice Room 250

September 16, 2004

"Lake Powell and the Impact of Extended Drought in the Southwest"
Speaker: Dr. John Dohrenwend, Adjunct Professor at University of Arizona

Extended drought in the upper Colorado River basin has reduced the Lake Powell reservoir to less than 40 percent of full pool capacity. Recession of the reservoir has exposed the 60-km length of the upper Colorado River delta (which has been extending into the reservoir for almost 40 years). Dr. Dohrenwend's presentation will explain the important implications of this drought.

Dr. Dohrenwend is currently an Adjunct Professor of Geoscience at the University of Arizona and works at Southwest Satellite Imaging in Utah. He has also worked as a Research Geologist at the United States Geological Survey. He has a Ph.D. in Geology from Stanford University.

September 23, 2004

"Minnesota and Climate Change Emission Trends, Policies, and Politics"
Speaker: Peter Ciborowski, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency

What is the role of the states in addressing global warming? With national and international activities seemingly stalled, is there anything that state governments can do to address this critical environmental problem. Mr. Ciborowski will address these questions, discussing Minnesota ’s greenhouse gas emission trends and forecasts as well as the state’s greenhouse gas policies and politics.

Peter Ciborowski is the state Pollution Control Agency’s expert on global warming and climate change. He has been with the Agency since 1993; prior to that he was a Fellow at the University of Minnesota ’s Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs. He has a BA from the State University of New York at Albany and an MA in Public Affairs from the Humphrey Institute.

September 30, 2004 - 7 p.m., Weyerhaeuser Board Room

“Caribbean Environment and Development: A Proposal for Knowledge-based Tourism, the Case Study in Montserrat”
Speaker: Prof. Lydia Pulsipher ('62), University of Tennessee Geographer

Tourism has been a rising strategy in Eastern Caribbean economies for more than forty years. Most islands embraced tourism without examining the long-term consequences of large hotels, and hundreds of thousands of visitors. Montserrat was perhaps more astute, placing its hopes on residential tourism, a form that appeals primarily to the affluent. Over the years several hundred expatriates invested millions in land and villas and supported the local economy by purchasing local produce, consumer durables, restaurant meals, and household labor. This presentation takes a hard look at the prospects for making a national living from a volcano, and suggests a way for Montserrat to link with ICOMOS-endorsed Global Sites of Conscience and become a place that attracts informed visitors seeking an enriching experience.

Prof. Pulsipher is a Macalester Alum (Class of 1962). She received her Ph.D. from Southern Illinois University in 1977 and taught first at Hunter College in New York City and then at Dartmouth College. In 1981 she joined the faculty of the Department of Geography at the University of Tennessee, where she has been a full professor since 1993. Dr. Pulsipher’s research has focused on the cultural and political ecology of the Eastern Caribbean since European contact.

This EnviroThursday is cosponsored by the Environmental Studies and Geography Departments.

October 5, 2004 - 7 p.m., Weyerhaeuser Chapel

“Fighting for Clean Air at the EPA: An Insider's Account”
Speaker: Eric Schaeffer, former Director of Enforcement at the U.S. EPA

Hear the story of Eric Schaeffer, a veteran of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), who served as Director of the Office of Regulatory Enforcement for the EPA for five years. For his work, Schaeffer was awarded the Justice Department's prestigious John Marshall Award as well as the Presidential Rank Award, the highest honor presented to career government employees.

In February 2002, however, Schaeffer publicly resigned from the EPA after 12 years of service saying he could no longer pretend that the White House and Department of Energy were not undermining the law and his department's ability to enforce it.

This event is co-sponsored by Macalester Environmental Studies Department and Inver Hills Community College.

October 7, 2004

"Climate Change Impacts on Native People of the Arctic"
Speaker: Aaron Doering, University of Minnesota

University of Minnesota Lecturer, Aaron Doering, crossed 2100 miles of Canadian Arctic with five others in the spring of 2004, delivering adventure learning to more than a million students worldwide via the Internet. Enjoy his stories about meeting the Inuit people documenting traditional ecological knowledge, the excitement of a polar bear in camp, the stark beauty of the Arctic, his sled falling through the ice on the second day, temperatures of -50 F, and concerns about global warming. You can find out more about the expeditions at www.polarhusky.com.

October 14, 2004

"Globalization, Development, and the Environment in Latin America: A Focus on Cuba"
Speaker: Patrick Leet, senior member of the International Team for Witness for Peace

Mr. Leet has been based in Havana for the past three years and has served as a member of the educational staff of the Martin Luther King Center on Nonviolence in Havana. He has traveled widely in support of Witness for Peace programs and knows Cuba and Latin America well. Mr. Leet has also participated in a number of hemispheric conferences on globalization and alternative models of development. His prior experience includes grassroots community and political organizing in the U.S. His educational background includes a B.A. from Pacific Lutheran University with majors in Global Studies and Psychology.

October 21, 2004

"Removing the Wolf from the Endangered Species List"
Speaker: Dr. L. David Mech, University of Minnesota expert of timber wolf policy and delisting

What to do with an endangered species success story? Wolves in Minnesota are a striking and rare example of recovery by a once threatened species. Their numbers are booming and have far exceeded the goals of the species recovery plan. Now what? Dr. L David Mech, an internationally recognized expert on wolf ecology, will discuss the issues surrounding the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's proposed removal of the Eastern Population Segment of gray wolves (Canis lupis) from the federal list of threatened and endangered species. Delisting would end federal protection for wolves in the delisted areas and return wolf management to individual states. What might this mean for the future of wolves in Minnesota and throughout North America?

Dr. Mech (www.npwrc.usgs.gov/info/staff/mech.htm), a recipient of The Wildlife Society’s Aldo Leopold Award for Distinguished Service to Wildlife Conservation, is a Senior Research Scientist with the US Geological Survey’s Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center and an Adjunct Professor at the University of Minnesota in St. Paul . He began studying wolves in MN in 1968 and has expanded his research to Alaska , Yellowstone National Park , the Canadian high arctic, and several foreign countries. Dr. Mech has chaired the IUCN Wolf Specialist Group of the World Conservation Union (www.iucn.org) since 1978 and is the founder and vice chair of the International Wolf Center (www.wolf.org) in Ely, Minnesota.

October 28, 2004 - No EnviroThursday

November 4, 2004 - No EnviroThursday

November 11, 2004

"Campus Sustainability: Ideas for Greening Macalester"

In October, Macalester sent students Richard Graves, Julia Eagles, Katie Edwards, and Kristin Pollock, along with Facilities Director Mark Dickinson and Provost Dan Hornbach, to a Campus Sustainability Conference in Portland, OR. Come and hear about their experiences and ideas for sustainability at Macalester.

November 16, 2004 - 4:30 p.m., Olin Rice 250

“Where Community Based Water Resource Management Has Gone Too Far: Sustainable Underdevelopment in Southern Madagascar
Speaker: Dr. Richard Marcus, ES-Policy Candidate

Ambovombe-Androy is a poor district in Southern Madagascar with a severe water scarcity problem. New national policies are consistent with international norms that support Integrated Water Resource Management and civic group resource management at the community level. Unfortunately, this strategy has led to expensive, unsuccessful groundwater mining at unknown environmental expense and the emergence of unregulated, predatory private water markets that undermine, rather than enhance, water access for the poorest segment of society.

November 18, 2004 - 4:30 p.m., Olin-Rice 150

"Where Communities Conserve: Participation, Institutions, and Environmental Conservation"
Speaker: Dr. Manjusha Gupte, ES-Policy Candidate

This presentation will discuss community-based conservation in India and seek to unravel the reasons behind its success and failure. It analyzes the structures, processes and agents that have enable come villages to practice self-evolved community conservation for the last twenty years. The research also reviews the institutional arrangements to ascertain how they may have shaped the contours of the conservation discourse in the villages.

November 23, 2004 - 4:30 p.m., Olin-Rice 350

"Some Water for All: Lessons from the Krishna Valley in India"
Speaker: Dr. Roopali Phadke, ES-Policy Candidate

Among environmental movements in India, activists from the Krishna Valley have taken a distinctive approach toward promoting the participatory development of water resources. In chronicling the evolution of the Krishan Valley movement, this presentation focuses on how political activists and NGO-engineers have shaped a new technical model for large dam development. Through both political protests and the articulation of technical alternatives, these activists are promoting an alternative vision for sustainable agriculture that addresses drought without sacrificing human rights or ecological integrity.

December 6 , 2004 - 4:30 p.m., Olin-Rice 250

"Rethinking the Wilderness Ideal"
Speaker: Dr. James Turner, ES-History Candidate

Wilderness has been a central concept in American environmentalism. Recently it has been a particularly controversial concept, both among scholars and environmentalists. In this talk, Professor Turner will focus on how an overlapping set of conversations between conservation biologists, philosophers, and environmentalists transformed both radical and mainstream environmentalism in the 1980s. It is this shift in wilderness thought that weakened the political consensus around wilderness and sparked the "great new wilderness debate."

December 8, 2004 - 3:30 p.m., Olin-Rice 250

"Recycling in Historical Perspective: American Patterns of Material Reuse from Colonial Times to the Present"
Speaker: Dr. Carl Zimring, ES-History Candidate

Recycling is today considered a vital part of sustainable waste management practices. American attitudes towards salvaging and reuse, however, have been less positive over most of the past two centuries. In this talk, Professor Zimring will explore the ways in which American behaviors concerning reuse of post-consumer and post-industrial materials have evolved since the colonial era, how these behaviors have produced environmental inequalities relating to the handling and location of waste material processing, and how historical developments in waste and salvage management may better inform contemporary practices.

December 13, 2004 - 4:30 p.m., Olin-Rice 250

"The First Environmental Movement: Nature, Cities and Suburbs in Progressive-Era America"
Speaker: Dr. Benjamin Johnson, ES-History Candidate

Scholars have traditionally seen conservation in the early 20th-century United States as an elite and expert-led effort. In contrast, in this talk Professor Johnson will argue that conservation during this period was in fact a broad and ambitious social movement that sought to restore Americans' direct access to nature in a range of landscapes. This movement embodied both the lofty promises of democracy and the dark possibilities for social control that lay at the heart of Progressivism. Its failures and successes fundamentally shaped the national landscape and Americans' understanding of it for generations to come. Recapturing the diverse voices of this movement suggests that environmentalism is a deeper and older impulse in American life and politics than most scholars have recognized.