In-Person and Virtual Events Mark Earth Day This Year

20 April 2021

By Matt Kelley

The University of Virginia is marking Thursday’s Earth Day observance with a variety of celebrations, activities and events throughout the month, but particularly this week.

On Tuesday, a weekly environmental science Zoom seminar is set at 4 p.m. on sustainability programs at UVA with Andrea Trimble, the office’s director of the UVA Office for Sustainability. Registration is not required. For information, click here.

Also Tuesday, the UVA Office of Sustainability, Protect Our Breasts at UVA, the Maxine Platzer Lynn Women’s Center and Women’s Voices of the Earth will host a Zoom discussion on sustainability, equity and feminine care products at 6 p.m. It may be accessed here.

“The Story of Plastic,” a film on plastic pollution, wraps up Tuesday, starting at 8 p.m. at the McIntire Amphitheater. Door prizes will be offered. Students of Write Climate: Climate Art & Community and the Institute of the Humanities and Global Cultures will host the in-person event. Since space is limited, participants are asked to register here.

Thursday will feature a livestreamed international Earth Day program at noon focusing on climate action with activists, educators, researchers, musicians and artists. The four-hour event will feature panel discussions, films and musical performances. It can be accessed here.

In local activities on Thursday, a watershed clean-up of plastic pollution is planned along Meadow Creek and Pollock’s Branch, starting at 1 p.m., seeking to prevent plastic pollution from reaching the Chesapeake Bay. Volunteers will be required to sign COVID field guidelines, which include having a mask if working fewer than 6 feet apart, supplying hand sanitizer and confirming health insurance, as well as answering health screening questions. The event is sponsored by The Nature Conservancy and Charlottesville Parks. Further information is available by emailing

The Nature Conservancy will host a guided bird hike at the Ivy Creek Natural Area starting at 7:30 a.m. To register, visit here.

Thursday also will feature a panel discussion at 2 p.m. on sustainable real estate design and consulting with UVA alumni, focusing on sustainable office spaces and employee and community health. The panel will be moderated by Sam Roberts, the general manager of Sky Club Design & Facilities, Delta Air Lines, and the panelists will include Bernard Harkless  of Lynx Ventures; Kate Rube of the International WELL Building Institute; and Tyrone Yang, principal design consultant of Architectural Health/Yang Architects. Participants are asked to register in advance here.

Thursday continues with a Zoom panel discussion at 3 p.m. on reducing carbon in the Virginia and global economies. Moderated by Larry Terry, executive director of UVA’s Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service and lecturer of public policy, the panel will include Bill Shobe, research director for the Cooper Center; Michael Lenox, senior associate dean at the Darden School of Business and chief strategy officer; and alumnus Andrés Gluski, president and chief executive officer of the AES Corporation. The discussions will focus on innovation, entrepreneurship and public service. Registrants will be sent a Zoom link. Presented by UVA Clubs and the Weldon Cooper Center, more information is available here.

On Friday, David Fedman, assistant professor of history at the University of California, Irvine, will speak in a Zoom webinar at 3 p.m. on “Beyond the Green Archipelago: Japan’s Empire of Forestry in Korea and Beyond.” To register for the event, sponsored by the UVA East Asia Center’s Spring Speaker Series, visit here.

Saturday will feature an all-day trash cleanup at Ragged Mountain Reservoir, followed by a free boat rental, sponsored by Intramural Recreation and UVA Sustainability. For information, visit here.

Video sharing is another way of celebrating Earth Day, according to Dana Schroeder, the outreach and engagement specialist at UVA’s Office for Sustainability. Crowd-sourced videos are available through Charlottesville-Area Green Neighbor Videos.

“This video collection features residents inspiring each other to adopt new sustainable practices, enabling neighbor-to-neighbor learning and forging community connections during an otherwise disconnected year,” Schroeder said.

Among the videos from people in the UVA community are: “How to Shop for LED Light Bulbs,” “How to Increase Fridge Efficiency,” “How to Respect Our Sewers,” “How to Be Green With a Little One” and “How to Compost with Worms.”

This piece originally appeared on UVA Today.

About the University of Virginia Darden School of Business

The University of Virginia Darden School of Business delivers the world’s best business education experience to prepare entrepreneurial, global and responsible leaders through its MBA, Ph.D., MSBA and Executive Education programs. Darden’s top-ranked faculty is renowned for teaching excellence and advances practical business knowledge through research. Darden was established in 1955 at the University of Virginia, a top public university founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1819 in Charlottesville, Virginia.


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