Sustainability mind-melds in Tacoma

By Volcano Staff on October 4, 2011


It's a crisp autumn afternoon at the Weekly Volcano World Headquarters. The wood fire is burning, the rear windows look out on the green foliage, and Editor Matt Driscoll has just made the office some peppermint tea.

As we discuss our editorial focus for our Green Issue next spring, one of the phrases buzzing around our group hug is "interdisciplinarity and sustainability." At its core, the idea is environmental concerns and their solutions interweave the boundaries of scholastic departments. Today's big brains are wise to consider the opinions of academic types in other fields in developing sustainable solutions. Help is not harmful, as they say.

Well. Guess. What. The University of Washington-Tacoma has developed a lecture series on interdisciplinarity and sustainability, kicking off tomorrow with Mike Kalton, professor emeritus, Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences discussing "Complexity and sustainability: systems perspectives" at 12:30 p.m. in UW-T's Joy Building.

Below is a list of the remaining lectures - all held from 12:30-1:30 in the Joy Building, Room 117. The lectures are free and open to the public. Just show up. The lectures are sponsored by UW Tacoma's Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences program (natch!). No word yet if Driscoll's delicious peppermint tea will be served.

Tacoma: from gritty to green
Oct. 12  - Marilyn Strickland, mayor, City of Tacoma

The economics of sustainability
Oct. 19 - Joe Lawless, executive director, Center for Leadership and Social Responsibility, UW-Tacoma

Community gardens: effects on nutrient cycling, diabetes and democracy
Oct. 26 - Kristen McIvor, Tacoma/Pierce County community garden coordinator
Grow Local, Cascade Land Conservancy

On the working waterfront: integrating multiple uses and creating public access in urban industrial shoreline areas
Nov. 2 - Anne Wessells, assistant professor, Urban Studies, UW-Tacoma

Watershed economics for the 21st century: the value of ecosystem services with a case study in the Puyallup River watershed
Nov. 9 - Research analysts Rowan Schmidt and Zac Christin, Earth Economics

Community-based conservation in tropical ecosystems: examples from Peru and Panama
Nov. 16 - Ursula Valdez, lecturer, Environmental Sciences, UW-Tacoma

Uranium mining: sustainable solutions in a tribal community
Nov. 30 - Twa-le Abrahamson, SHAWL (Sovereignty, Health, Air, Water, Land) Society, Spokane Tribe

Feeling the heat: how American mainstream media cover environmental issues
Dec. 7 - Ellen Moore, lecturer, Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, UW-Tacoma