Welcome

Welcome to the Champaign County Sustainability Network (CCNet). CCNet is an organization focused on convening Champaign County in discussions about the broad topic of sustainability and the opportunities we might uncover as we work to become a more sustainable community. We meet monthly at the same time and place and at each meeting we will learn about a specific topic, with time for discussion. Over time, we'll cover the range of sustainability topics. We'll host special events, as needed, on topics or at locations of interest to the group and community. Come learn more about us and about sustainability in our community.

Join Us!
Noon, Thursday, November 17, 2016



WATCH Clinton Landfill Association 

Guest: David Holt 
WATCH Clinton Landfill Association has developed a Coordinated Proposal which analyzes the portion of the revenue currently provided by homeowners and businesses to the established solid-waste-collection infrastructure that ultimately supports land disposal of noninert solid waste and, indirectly, its known, eventual environmental contamination. The proposal advocates a discretionary change by homeowners and businesses, supported by regulatory action currently available through local solid-waste plans, as well as options of litigation and legislation. The proposal shows that those changes could redirect that portion of the existing, essentially mandated collection revenue from supporting land disposal of noninert solid waste to supporting any number of currently viable, recognized-as-safer, alternative disposal technologies, facilitating the broader achievement of well-established, long-term, resource-conservation and environmental-protection goals.

Champaign County Economic Development Corp.
1817 S. Neil Street
Champaign, IL 61820

This event is free and open to the public. 
SEE YOU THERE!

 

12noon, Thursday, October 20, 2016
Coal Ash on Illinois’ Only Scenic River

Join us for our October noon 3rd Thursday brownbag talk: 
Coal Ash on Illinois’ Only Scenic River

Guests: Lan & Pam Richart, Co-Founders
Eco-Justice Collaborative
Champaign, Illinois

Fossil fuels brought about an industrial revolution with many benefits for humankind, but not without significant social, economic and environmental costs. Today, requiring the power industry to internalize its costs is an important step in creating a level playing field for the adoption of cleaner, and safer energy alternatives.

Between 1955 and 2011 the Vermilion Power station deposited millions of cubic yards of toxic coal ash in unlined, leaking coal ash pits immediately adjacent to the Middle Fork of the Vermilion River, Illinois’ only National Scenic River. With coal ash pollutants leaking into the groundwater and the river eroding its banks ever closer to the coal ash impoundments, the current owner is making plans to cover these pits and leave them permanently in place. But who will ultimately bear the cost of keeping the river at bay, or pay the price for recovering from a major coal ash spill? Local advocates such as Eco-Justice Collaborative are leading a grassroots campaign calling for the removal of the ash to a safe, properly designed facility away from the river. Join us as we hear more details about the threat to the Middle Fork and how Illinois residents are making their voices heard.

 

 

9 am to Noon, Saturday, July 16, 2016

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Pollinator-Palooza!

 

Help plant milkweed at Firefighter Park 
305 S Randolph St, Champaign
Saturday July 16  from 9-12
bring gloves

The Champaign Park District is transforming Firefighter Park (305 S Randolph) into a butterfly habitat. All City Staff are invited to help plant milkweed this Saturday from 9 am to noon.  Champaign joined the Mayor's Monarch Challenge Leadership Circle to save the Monarch Butterfly.  In the last 20 years, the Monarch population has declined by over 94%, shrinking from over 1 billion to just 60 million butterflies. Monarchs rely on Milkweed plants, the only plant that they can use to cocoon. The Midwest is an essential breeding ground for the annual Monarch migration from Canada to Mexico, and habitat loss has contributed to their decline.  

Noon, Thursday, July 28, 2016

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Pollinator Pocket Garden Tour

Walking Tour Begins at Bresnan Center
706 Kenwood Rd, Champaign

Moving beyond pollinator week in June and to keep the conversation ongoing, CCNET is hosting a tour with, Randy Hauser, Horticulture and Natural Areas Supervisor for the Champaign Park District to learn about "pocket gardens". This will be a great learning experience for people who love plants and want to help the pollinators and the Monarch, but only have small space for gardens.  

This event is free and open to the public. 

SEE YOU THERE!
 

Noon, Thursday, May 19, 2016

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Campus Bike Center Tour
 

CCNet invites you to an off-hours tour of the Campus Bike Center.  The Campus Bike Center — a collaboration between the University of Illinois and The Bike Project of Urbana-Champaign — is dedicated to empowering individuals with knowledge about how to repair and maintain bicycles and encouraging mode-shift away from single-occupancy vehicles.  This educational center offers hands-on experiential learning that students can’t get in a classroom.  By empowering people with the ability to fix a bicycle and providing a connection between the campus and the community, the Bike Center promotes bicycling, collaboration, and community spirit.
 
12:00 pm
Campus Bike Center
608 E. Pennsylvania Avenue
Champaign, IL 61820

SEE YOU THERE!

Noon, Thursday, April 21, 2016

Eliana Brown

Illinois Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy:
How we got here, where we're going, and
what that means for cities 
 

Guests: Eliana Brown and Anjanette Riley
Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant/Illinois Water Resources Center
University of Illinois 

Eliana Brown is a Stormwater Specialist with Illinois Indiana Sea Grant and the Illinois Water Resources Center, involved with the implementation of the Illinois Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy. Eliana focuses on green infrastructure, and regulatory aspects of wastewater and stormwater programs. Anjanette Riley is a media/communication specialist for the Illinois Indiana Sea Grant as a science writer.

This event is free and open to the public. 

12:00 pm, Thursday, April 21
Champaign County Economic Development Corporation
1817 S. Neil Street, Suite 100
Champaign, IL 61820

SEE YOU THERE!

Noon, Thursday, March 17, 2016

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Addressing Urban Flooding and Stormwater Issues in Illinois
 

Guest: Molly Woloszyn, Extension Climate Specialist
Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant/Midwestern Regional Climate Center
University of Illinois Extension

The Illinois State Water Survey (ISWS) and Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant (IISG) are both actively involved in addressing urban flooding and stormwater issues in the state of Illinois. This presentation will highlight recent studies and resources that are available through ISWS and IISG. In August 2014, the Urban Flood Awareness Act (UFAA) was signed into law in Illinois. The main findings and recommendations of the UFAA report from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and ISWS will be highlighted. In addition, a new Flood Vulnerability Assessment for Critical Facilities will be discussed as a way for communities to individually assess their critical facilities to ensure their preparedness for flooding events. Finally, Bulletin 70 is a rainfall frequency study for Illinois that was released in 1989 and is currently used as the standard for design work across the state. This presentation will discuss the status of updating this bulletin, as well as a recent ISWS study that is looking at future rainfall frequencies.

This event is free and open to the public. 

12:00 pm
Champaign County Economic Development Corporation
1817 S. Neil Street, Suite 100
Champaign, IL 61820

SEE YOU THERE!

Noon, Thursday, February 18, 2016

parkland

Parkland College as a Model of District-Scale Sustainability
 

Guest: Thor Peterson, Sustainability Coordinator, Parkland College

Thor will describe how Parkland College is moving from piecemeal, demonstration project-style interventions to more holistic and coordinated approaches that can truly transform the campus and the institution it houses into a model of sustainability.
 
Thor Peterson is Sustainability Coordinator at Parkland College and owner of Synthesis Consultants LLC. Thor advocated for resource conservation and human health for nearly a decade at the City of Seattle, where he developed and delivered residential green building programming. Subsequent to that he served as Research Director for the Cascadia Green Building Council, assisting in the evolution of the Living Building Challenge building certification system. Since 2008, Thor has provided sustainability services through Synthesis Consultants, his green building and sustainability consultancy. He holds a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Washington with a focus on environmental policy.
 
This event is free and open to the public. 

12:00 pm
Champaign County Economic Development Corporation
1817 S. Neil Street, Suite 100
Champaign, IL 61820

SEE YOU THERE!

Noon, Thursday, January 21, 2016

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Appreciation for East-Central Illinois prairies and forests, natural areas conservation and stewardship. 

James Ellis, botanist with the Illinois Natural History Survey will share his presentation on natural areas conservation and stweardship in east-centeral Illinois 
This event is free and open to the public. This is a great time of year to learn about our natural areas and how they benefit our lives, socialy, economically, and environmentally.

James Ellis works as a botanist with the Illinois Natural History Survey where he coordinates and carries out vegetation surveys as part of the Critical Trends Assessment Program. He is most interested in the ecology, conservation, and restoration of the all-but-gone tallgrass prairie. James also volunteers with Grand Prairie Friends, an all-volunteer conservation organization and land trust in east-central Illinois, where he serves on the board of directors, coordinates the summer internship program, helps coordinate the annual native plant sale, as well as other duties. He lives in Urbana with his wife and two children.

12:00 pm
Champaign County Economic Development Corporation
1817 S. Neil Street, Suite 100
Champaign, IL 61820

SEE YOU THERE!

Noon, Thursday, December 17, 2015

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Solar Urbana-Champaign

Solar Urbana-Champaign is a community-wide residential and commercial discount program for solar.

Offered by the City of Urbana, the Midwest Renewable Energy Association, IGEN, and the Environmental Law & Policy Center, home and business owners throughout Champaign County may participate in this program to help pool their buying power to secure significant discounts that make installing solar more affordable than ever.

Step 1: Attend a Solar Power Hour to learn about solar, the program, and whether this would be a good fit for you.

12:00 pm
Champaign County Economic Development Corporation
1817 S. Neil Street, Suite 100
Champaign, IL 61820

SEE YOU THERE!

Noon, Thursday, November 19, 2015

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Champaign Farmer's Market - Round One

Guest:
Sarah Simeziane, Manager
Champaign Farmer's Market

Sarah Simeziane is the manager of the Champaign Farmers' Market. After completing M.A.degrees in Communication and Linguistics at the University of Illinois, Sarah began teaching at Parkland College and working with the Urbana Market at the Square, as the assistant director. Through this position she was able to learn more about local food, help administer Link matching programs to expand struggling families' food budgets, and hone her photography skills at the market. She joined The Land Connection,  a Champaign non-profit that specializes in farmer training, farmland preservation, and sustainable farming, in April 2015 for the launch of the new Tuesday afternoon farmers' market in downtown Champaign. She will be talking about the successful first market season and plans for the second season and beyond, including the challenges of setting up and promoting a new market, the variety of events and educational programming offered by The Land Connection and its partners and sponsors, and goals for future seasons. You can learn more about the Champaign Farmers' Market and The Land Connection at: http://thelandconnection.org/blog/champaign-farmers-market-round-one

12:00 pm
Champaign County Economic Development Corporation
1817 S. Neil Street, Suite 100
Champaign, IL 61820

SEE YOU THERE!

 

 

Noon, Thursday, October 22, 2015

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Boneyard Creek Info Lunch 
Urbana Civic Center

108 E. Water Street
Urbana, IL

We will listen to Brad Bennett, City of Urbana, Environmental Engineer, discuss the Green Infrastructure improvement to the Boneyard Creek, City of Champaign's Eleanor Blackmon and Alex Nagy will follow up with Champaign's Green Infrastructure implementation in the large stormwater management projects including the Boneyard and West Washington St Detention Basin. A light lunch will be included during the presentations, then we will walk the Boneyard to see the Green Infrastructure.
SEE YOU THERE!

Upcoming Events:

Sustainability Week 2015!


CCNet will foster collaboration around leadership opportunities for Champaign County. The current topic that creates an opportunity for competitive differentiation is sustainability. This opportunity enables us to attract and retain innovative ideas, products and people, and it will attract external financial resources in the form of federal funds, research dollars and new corporate investments.