Presentations take place at 12 noon, Olin-Rice Room 350


January 18, 2024

Location:  Olin-Rice 243

“Sustainability Social:  Come and Learn About Land Tenure and Sustainability Forestry Community-Based Conservation”

Speakers:  Guatemalan Community Forestry Leaders

Community Leaders from Uaxactun, a forest community in Guatemala’s Maya Biosphere Reserve, will be visiting Macalester.  Come meet our visitors and hear about the positive impact that community-led forestry and agroforestry has had on both local people and the forest they call home.

The Maya Biosphere Reserve is considered to be a community forestry success story.  Currently, there are about 2 million acres of tropical forest under community management in the Maya Biosphere Reserve.  Uaxactun is one of several communities in the reserve that have successfully promoted community well-being and ecological conservation through the sustainable harvest of both timber and non-timber forest products. In these areas, communities have brought down the rates of deforestation as well as protected the lands they manage from fire and conversion to agriculture or pasture, demonstrating that devolving tenure rights to local communities leads to conservation benefits.  At the same time, income generated by community enterprises has allowed communities like Uaxactun to invest in education, create employment opportunities for local men and women, provide for community medical needs, and improve the well-being of its people.

Learn more about Uaxactun and Community Forestry here:

This event is co-sponsored by the Environmental Studies Dept. and Sustainability Office.

January 25, 2024

Location:  JBD Lecture Hall, Campus Center

“Deluged:  Inundation of a Homeland”

Speaker:  Angela Parker, History Department, University of Denver

Our lived landscapes seem so concrete, but many things flow through, over, and out of them to radically change the lands we call home. Dr. Angela Parker (Mandan, Hidatsa, Cree) considers the impact the flows of capitalism – exemplified in a 1950s era hydroelectric project, and the early 2000s Bakken oil boom – has had on the political and community identity at the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation in North Dakota. In both eras, the deluge of “development” hinged on narratives of inevitability and the Euro-American fungibility of land and resources.

Angela Parker (Mandan, Hidatsa, Cree) is an enrolled member of the Three Affiliated Tribes of the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation in North Dakota, and participates at her father’s reservation, the Rocky Boy Indian Reservation in Montana. Angela earned her B.A. in History from Stanford University, and her M.A./Ph.D. in Twentieth Century United States and Native American History from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. She currently teaches as an Assistant Professor of History at the University of Denver, and her research focuses on twentieth century Native American and U.S. history, particularly the long twentieth century history of oil extraction in Indigenous communities, the evolution of tribal sovereignty, and Native activism. Angela is the daughter of Karol (’74) and Larry Parker ’(74) and lives in Boulder, Colorado with her partner, Ty, and their son, Icuuwushga Xaxish.

This event is supported by the Macalester Native and Indigenous (MNI) Initiative, Environmental Studies, and the Macalester Program Board.

February 1, 2024

COP28 Attendees“COP28 in Review”

Speakers:  Prof. Roopali Phadke and COP28 Attendees

In December 2023, a delegation of Macalester students and faculty participated in the UN Climate Summit in Dubai (COP28). Members of the group will describe their takeaways, and share opportunities to participate in the future.

February 8, 2024

No EnviroThursday – ES Majors and Minors Lunch

February 15, 2024

Location:  Olin-Rice 250

Prof. Joseph Bump“Hunting Wolves Won’t Save Bambi and Other Conservation Insights”

Speaker:  Prof. Joseph Bump, University of Minnesota Twin Cities

Some groups in Minnesota are calling for wolf hunting and trapping seasons to save deer fawns from being eaten by wolves. But would killing wolves save deer fawns?  Based on two decades of studying wolves, Prof. Joseph Bump will share ecological, cultural, ethical, political, and legal perspectives on the conservation of one of the most loved and hated large carnivore species.

Prof. Bump holds the Gordon W. Gullion Endowed Chair in Wildlife Research and Education and is Director of Graduate Studies for the Conservation Science Program at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Bump’s focus is on the functional role wildlife species play—alive and dead—in ecosystems and how that applies to biodiversity conservation. He currently leads research projects in Voyageurs, Isle Royale, and Yellowstone National Parks, across Minnesota, and in Switzerland, Kenya, and India.

This EnviroThursday is co-sponsored by the Environmental Studies and Biology Departments.

February 22, 2024

Location:  Olin-Rice 250

Prof. Devavani Chatterjea
“Bodies on Fire:  The Life Changing Effects of Toxins, Inflammation, and Injustice”

Speaker:  Devavani Chatterjea, Professor of Biology, Macalester College

In this Biology/Environmental Studies joint seminar, Prof. Chatterjea will give an overview of her research conducted collaboratively with students at Macalester, her trajectory from cellular/molecular biomedicine to environmental health, and share her path to her current role in the federal government.

Devavani Chatterjea is a scientist, educator, and policymaker.  She studies inflammation – the body’s knife-edge between the processes of healing and chronic disease – as a map and metaphor for individual, population, and planetary health.  For the past two decades, her work has spanned the biotechnology industry, higher education, and government where she currently serves in the Biden-Harris Administration on the Council for Environmental Quality.

This event is co-sponsored by the Environmental Studies and Biology Departments.

February 29, 2024

Location:  Olin-Rice 350

Prof. Vincente Diaz“Back to Indigenous Futures”

Speaker:  Vicente Diaz, Professor of American Indian Studies, University of Minnesota

Vicente Diaz will share theories, stories, images, and illustrations of how Native to Native relations in collaboration with cross disciplinary and even anti- disciplinary research around canoe revitalization, ecological knowledge, and social justice can lead to radical new modes of producing knowledge.

Diaz is an interdisciplinary scholar (History, Anthropology, Cultural Studies, Comparative and Global Indigenous Studies) who specializes in critical indigenous studies in North America and the Pacific Ocean region. He has researched and published in topics such as Indigenous Critical Theory; Traditional Outrigger Canoe Voyaging in Micronesia; Coloniality and Indigenous Christianity in Micronesia; Indigenous Masculinity and Sports in the Pacific; and Trans-Indigenous Theory and Practice. He is the founder and director of The Native Canoe Program which uses traditional Indigenous watercraft and Indigenous waterbased ecological knowledge and technology from across Oceania and the Native Great Lakes and Mississippi River to advance community-engaged research, teaching, and service. This program mixes hands-on, experiential learning and teaching with advanced visualization technologies of Virtual and Augmented Realities, through collaboration with UMN’s Interactive Visualization Lab, headed by Prof. Daniel Keefe of the Department of Computer Science and Engineering.

This event is supported by the Macalester Native and Indigenous (MNI) Initiative, Environmental Studies, and the Macalester Program Board.

March 7, 2024

Location:  Olin-Rice 250

“Ecosystems in a Changing World: How Climate-Driven Disturbances are Altering Puerto Rico’s Wet Tropical Forests (…and How Mac Students Can Get Involved in This Research!)”

Speaker:  Christine Sierra O’Connell, Environmental Studies Department, Macalester College

March 14, 2024

No EnviroThursday – Spring Break

March 21, 2024

Climate Storytelling Slam

March 28, 2024

April 4, 2024

Speaker:  Claire Wahmanholm, author of Meltwater

This event is co-sponsored by the Environmental Studies, English and Geology Departments.

April 11, 2024

Sigurd Olson Lecture Series
“Wild California and the Antiquities Act”

Speakers:  Nobby Riedy and Matt Keller

This talk will focus on wildlands in California and the use of the Antiquities Act as an effective land preservation tool.

California is the most biologically diverse state in the United States. It is also the most heavily populated state with about 39,000,000 residents. It has 75 cities with over 100,000 people each. More than 100 indigenous tribes are federally recognized. If it were a country, California would have the fifth largest economy in the world measured by GDP.

California has nearly 50 million acres of public domain lands; about one-quarter of the state, or 25 million acres, is permanently protected from development and extraction.

Federal wilderness areas and national parks account for much of the protected land. In addition, there are 18 national monuments in California protected under the Antiquities Act. Eight new national monuments, covering well over one million acres, have been proposed.

This 2024 Sigurd Olson Lecture will explain the use of the Antiquities Act as a land preservation tool using the history of national monuments in California. National monuments have a nearly one-hundred-year history in the state and have been essential in the establishment of the statewide network of protected landscapes.

Nobby Riedy has worked on conservation of public lands for nearly 40 years. He worked for The Wilderness Society in Washington, D.C. and in California. Afterward, he cofounded WildSpaces, a California lands-focused philanthropy to support the conservation of natural landscapes and biodiversity, and the benefits they provide to people. WildSpaces has over 100 grantees in California engaged in statewide, regional, and local campaigns to protect the natural world.

Matt Keller is the Campaigns Director at the Protection Campaign, a project of Resources Legacy Fund.  In this role, he serves as a funder and strategic advisor to grassroots organizations and tribal nations working to protect important landscapes.  Prior this, he spent nearly two decades at The Wilderness Society and The Wilderness Society Action Fund, leading advocacy campaigns to protect public lands across the nation, holding elected officials accountable, and supporting conservation friendly candidates for public office. Matt led the national monument’s campaign during the Obama Administration, which resulted in the permanent protection of nearly 5.5 million acres of public land.

This talk is in collaboration with the Campaign to Save the Boundary Waters.

April 18, 2024

Environmental Studies Honors Presentations