Talks: Ecology / 2018-2019

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Shaping San Francisco hosts Public Talks on a variety of topics on Wednesday nights, about 18 times a year. One recurrent theme has been Ecology and urban nature. Here are the Talks we held at the Eric Quezada Center for Culture and Politics at 518 Valencia Street in 2012, 2013, and 2014.


September 25, 2019

Neighborhood Corridors: Memory and Ecology

Efforts to integrate history and ecological restoration can be found tucked away in most San Francisco neighborhoods. Neighborhood greenways and corridors are most often the result of initial community-based activism to beautify an urban space, and end up becoming much more complex projects. Sophie Constantinou shares stories of creating the Buchanan Street Mall project and a newly accessible open space along the Bernal Cut, and how the different neighborhoods shaped these similar projects. Fran Martin of the Visitacion Valley Greenway talks about the years-long effort to create an educational, recreational, and green space and how that has influenced ongoing neighborhood planning.

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May 22, 2019

Local Ecological Justice and Urbanity

Gopal Dayaneni (Movement Generation) and Jason Mark (editor, Sierra Magazine) discuss urbanity and ecological crisis from their ultra-local, regional, and national perspectives of environmental and ecological justice.

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March 27, 2019

Sea Level Rise: Pacific Ocean and the Bay Area

Christina Gerhardt, author of The Atlas of (Remote) Islands and Sea Level Rise, explores the effects and responses to climate-warming on low-lying Pacific Ocean islands. Urbanist Laura Tam addresses sea level rise on vulnerable shorelines around the Bay Area. Learn about indigenous inhabitants’ adaptive solutions in the South Seas and local grassroots efforts to prepare our bay shore.

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March 28, 2018

Saving the Bay from the "Future"

From the weird madness of the Reber Plan to dam both ends of the Bay into freshwater lakes in the 1950s to the Save the Bay movement of the early 1960s that helped create the Bay Conservation and Development Commission, we’ve come a long way in a half century. Today’s open shorelines, closed trash dumps, and returning wetlands honor and preserve our greatest public resource. Historian Chuck Wollenberg and Steve Goldbeck from BCDC.

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March 7, 2018

Resilient by Design: The Language of Water

The “Language of Water” is a vision to retrofit strategic locations of the Islais Creek Watershed to reduce flood risk and invest in real resiliency from sea level rise, drought, flooding and demonstrating the state of the art practices available to the agency or the cities. This proposal includes plans to create multi-purpose, distributed infrastructure for water supply, wastewater and stormwater treatment and the incorporation of creek daylighting and floodable spaces that make room for floodwaters. The team also explored the role of energy and water independence within neighborhoods and individual buildings as part of our toolkits for ensuring redundant and resilient water and drainage systems. Speakers include Patricia Algara of Base Landscape Architecture and Rosey Jencks, formerly of the SFPUC

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February 7, 2018

Building a Deep Map--Beyond Buildings and Views

Celebrating the release of a new map of San Francisco, "Nature in the City" reflects a rich and fairly recent understanding of what comprises a place. An update of an original 2006 map, the rework includes a total of five maps, highlighting species that live alongside Homo sapiens, geology, gardening, restoration, and connections within the Bay-Delta. Mary Ellen Hannibal (author of Citizen Scientist), Rebecca Johnson (Academy of Sciences), and map artist Jane Kim highlight the making of the map, the contributions of citizen science to our broader knowledge of place, and how this collaboration expresses the kind of emergent creative work we all need to do together to meet the challenges of our day and going forward. Co-hosted by Nature in the City

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