ECO Newsletter: Week of April 24, 2016

Hi everyone –

Welcome to the last week of classes of Spring Semester!

Thank you all for taking part in the Earth Week activities! We sure had fun singing karaoke and answering quizzes, but we hope you also took conscience of your carbon footprint and picked up ideas on ways to decrease it. The Green Fund also wants to thank you for separating your food scraps to collaborate with the composting pilot.

Before we continue with our usual announcements, ECO wants to give a shout-out to Columbia Divest for Climate Justice (CDCJ) that ended their eight-day occupation of Low Library on Friday. Once more we reiterate our support (read more here) and we thank them for their political action. Read more about the end of the occupation and agreements reached here.


Project Joule
When: Thursday April 28, 2016, 1PM – 2PM
Where:International Affairs Building 802

As the number of refugees continues to rise globally, research on the provision and economics of energy access in refugee camps is much needed but remains understudied. Providing adequate energy access is difficult in a displacement context, where political challenges, a shortage of energy specialists in the field, and limited private sector investment are a few of the many factors that prevent substantial improvements from reaching refugees. Project Joule is a group of four female SIPA students who traveled in March 2016 to Syrian refugee camps in Lebanon to explore this issue. You are cordially invited to join their showcase presentation where they will discuss their observations in addition to a photo exhibit.

Note that the event will start promptly at 1PM. Food will be provided by Eat Offbeat – a social enterprise that offers authentic ethnic food prepared and delivered by refugees in New York and Manhattan.

REGISTER HERE!  Find Project Joule on Facebook!

GIS Workshop
When: Friday, April 30th, 2016,12PM – 2PM
Where:International Affairs Building TBD

Join ECO in a 2 hour introductory GIS workshop, the material will be different from the workshop in February. Those that were on the waitlist for the first GIS Workshop (February 14) will be given priority, if they are interested in participate this Friday, just send us an email. Please bring your laptop. Please  with Yen Le (ykl2107), there is limited space.

Giving More Than They Take: Net Zero in NYC
When: Wednesday, May 4, 2016, 6PM – 8PM
Where:Pratt School Architecture, Programs for Sustainable Planning and Development – 144 West 14th Street, New York, NY

Net Zero Energy and Net Positive buildings are the exemplars that will significantly reduce carbon emissions in New York City: buildings that give more than they take. Achieving Net Zero, however, is a tremendous challenge in a urban environment where density, shadows, and restricted roof area often limit PV, where a focus on first cost and short payback horizons limit the appetite to invest in a Low Carbon future, and where an aversion to risk can cause building owners and developers to get gun-shy or cause a contractor to triple their bid.

So how do we rise to the challenge?  Hear leading practitioners discuss their unique perspectives on the design, construction and financing of ultra high performance buildings. Team leads of highly touted projects such as Cornell Tech and PS 62 will discuss lessons learned, obstacles overcome, and their recommendations for how more architects, engineers, contractors, and developers will be able to make the impossible possible in the years to come. RSVP:


Women in Energy Internship Funding Application  
DEADLINE: May 2nd, 2016 (Monday)
Stipends are awarded to outstanding female students who have secured summer internship positions with companies or organizations in energy related sectors. To submit application packet or if you have any questions, please contact Jully Meriño at


Long Duhung: Gendered Impacts of Deforestation, a documentary film project, highlights how deforestation has impacted the lives and livelihoods of the men and women of a small Dayak Punan community in the village of Long Duhung, East Kalimantan, Indonesia. It then reflects on how the intersection between gender and environment is understood — and measured — more broadly in the international development sector.

We conducted interviews with community members from Long Duhung as well as field researchers and experts from: IUCN, the World Bank, World Resources Institute, Women Research Institute (Jakarta), CIFOR, and Columbia University.

This project was funded by Columbia’s Global Policy Initiative and the Energy and Environment program’s Global Collaboratory. The Global Collaboratory is a curricular enhancement to further develop world-class students’ readiness for post-Masters Degree professional development in the global energy and environment field.

Isaura Espinosa de los Monteros (

Will Jordan (

SIPA Environmental Coalition (ECO) Communications Co-Directors

To stay on top of all our news and events, don’t forget to check out and follow ECO on Facebook and Twitter. Click here to join our listserve or forward to a friend.

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