17 Jun 2020

Green Team Newsletter: Intersections Between Racial and Environmental Justice


Racial Justice = Climate Justice

In solidarity with the Black community, we are challenging ourselves to be actively anti-racist in our sustainability efforts and stand up against social injustice and racism each and every day. The Green Team will be meeting Wednesday, June 24, to brainstorm actionable ideas for institutionalizing environmental and climate justice into Green Team initiatives going forward. Send your suggestions to sustainability@hbs.edu. Learn about the connections between racial justice and environmental justice in the media articles below.

- Grist (2016 video), Environmental justice, explained

- The Washington Post, Racism is killing black people. It’s sickening them, too. (by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s Dean Williams and Lecturer Jeffrey Sánchez)

- The New York Times, Black Environmentalists Talk about Climate and Anti-Racism (by Somini Sengupta)

- The Washington Post, Racism Derails our Efforts to Save the Planet (by Ayana Elizabeth Johnson)

- The New Yorker, Racism, Police Violence, and the Climate are Not Separate Issues (by Bill McKibben)

- 350.org, Resources: Environmental Justice & White Supremacy

Submit Your Reflections in Nature Photos

Experiencing nature can have healing and restorative benefits for body and mind. Share your original nature photos, and tell us how you’re getting outdoors to relax, recharge, and reflect on how you can make positive change in the world. Send your photo, with a brief explanation of why it is meaningful to you, to sustainability@hbs.edu by Friday, July 10.

Staff Spotlight

Green Teamers Janet Gormley, senior administrative and operations manager in Executive Education, and Ben Beckwith, a contractor with TSS, have been stepping up their gardening game with an indoor worm composting bin and hydroponics.

"I am doing hydroponic gardening using an aerogarden harvest. I’m growing four different herbs: Genovese basil, curly parsley, dill and thyme," says Janet.

“We have used Bootstrap Compost, a compost pick-up service for our food scraps, for years and it’s been great. Recently, the service was interrupted by COVID-19 concerns. We decided to order worms and try making a worm bin ourselves but apparently the worms didn’t like it— they escaped, and even after trying to cover all the spaces, they found a way out," explains Ben. "We now have a worm composter and the worms seem happy with it—not one has left. We are back to using Bootstrap for weekly pickups, but also feed the worms some of the scraps. At some point, we'll use the worm castings for our garden."

Mellon courtyard
Photo: Amelia Kunhardt

Facilities Spotlight: Trees on Campus

Honeylocust, Linden, Maple, Oak, Dogwood, Magnolia, Cherry. Explore the HBS tree inventory, and see just how many different trees we have on campus.

Green Tip: Mindfulness and Meditation Resources

LiveWell@HBS: Zoom Guided Meditation
Mondays and Wednesdays, from 12:30 - 1:30 p.m. Join on Zoom. Thursdays, from 8:00 - 8:30 a.m. Join on Zoom.
Join for five, 15, or the full 30 minutes. All levels are welcome. Sessions are led by Theresa Thompson, a psychotherapist, meditation teacher, and musician. With 25 years of experience, Theresa incorporates both mindfulness and mantra meditation into her practice. An additional 15 minutes has been built in after each session to ask questions or chat with the instructor. Summer sessions run June 1 through August 13. For questions, please contact Robin Smith.

Take the Daily Break, offered by Harvard’s KGA Employee Assistance Program. Each weekday, KGA offers a free 15-minute stretch break and 10-minute meditation session. Participate as often as you'd like. Family members are welcome.

Ten Percent Happier, a free mindfulness app, offers more than 350 guided meditations, talks, and daily features–even personal coaches. Please view the announcement flyer to learn more and download the app. For more information on other University Wellness programming, visit the Office for Work/Life.

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