MSC January 2020 Meeting

The UHM Sustainability Council met from 3-4pm on January 15, 2020. Topics of discussion included the following:

* COP25 update (Kekoa Andrade)

Kekoa attended COP25 in Madrid. A major topic was how to enable states, cities, and universities to enact components of the Paris Accord. Kekoa attended a panel with reps from universities around the world who spoke about how their universities have tried to support the Paris Accord. For example, Monash University has created partnerships with research institutes and think tanks in an effort to link research to policy. Interdisciplinary grad programs appear to be really useful for this effort. A study by Vanderbilt indicates that only one US university currently has a required course on climate change.

For next year’s COP26 in Glasgow, Kekoa thinks it would be good to have more student representation. If you would like to learn more about COP, please contact Kekoa at He has a lot of materials he can share with you.

* Earth Day 2020 Planning (Hannah Emery)

Hannah is working with Surfrider to broaden Earth Day to Earth Week with the hope that this can maximize the ability of people to participate. Example events include a workshop with Project Drawdown and one on climate anxiety and techniques to manage it. Wed Apr 22 will be the big celebration including a vegan stirfresh take-over; tabling by nonprofits and student groups; screenprinting; and a movie night in Art Auditorium.  There might be an after party at end of week at Bale.

Discussion included thoughts on how we could use Earth Week to catalyze more engagement by faculty and departments around sustainability and climate change.  There was general agreement regarding an activity involving yarn and push pins.

There is an Earth Day Planning Group who is looking for participants, contact Hannah ( if you want to get involved.

* Solve Climate By 2030 initiative (Bob Franco)

Bob is part of NCSE (, a network of about 30-40 community colleges and 85 universities to foster collaboration on environmental issues. 

Solve Climate by 2030 ( has organizations in all 50 states, and want to attract 100K students to attend a one day, two hour seminar whose goal is to produce three items that each state can do to solve climate by 2030. There are social media internships available (for details, see

For UH, big issue is how to enable all campuses to participate without having to fly between islands or travel to different campuses.  Can we use IT to reduce travel, and to provide more events that are not campus-specific?

For more details on Solve Climate by 2030 and/or NCSE, please contact Bob Franco (

* Pacific Risk Management Ohana Annual Conference (Bob Franco).

PRIMO is having their annual conference on March 10-13. According to the website, PRIMO “is the premier venue for community leaders interested in protecting Pacific Island communities from natural hazards. Each year, hundreds of participants gather to make connections, learn from each other, discuss ongoing initiatives, and design action plans.”

For more details, see the PRIMO website:

* ISR Update (Makena Coffman)

The BA in Sustainability just launched, students can now declare sustainability as a major! Still working on website.

The ISR Seminar series is continuing.  First meeting will be Jan 28th. Contact Makena ( if you would like to be added to the mailing list to receive notice of the seminar series speakers and topics.

Strategic question: how can ISR help get people on the same page about climate change “faster”? They recently organized a delegation of city and state leaders to go on a week long, three city tour of places affected by sea level rise (Miami, Boston, and Charleston).  Sloshing around flooded Miami streets was apparently instructive.

* Bonus topic not covered at meeting:
Inundation: Art and Climate Change in the Pacific (

Much thanks to Manoa Dining Services for bringing delicious hummus, baba ganoush, and chips!

Our next meeting will be Wednesday, February 19, at 3pm.

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