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2022 Environmental Summit – Climate Change

Building Climate Change Resiliency into Our Landscapes


We are pleased to announce that our Keynote Speaker for the virtual 2022 Environmental Summit is Doug Tallamy. Doug Tallamy is a professor in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware in Newark, Delaware. Doug won the Silver Medal from the Garden Writer’s Association for his 2007 book, Bringing Nature Home, widely recognized as one of the most important books of its kind. More recently, he authored another book, The Nature of Oaks: The Rich Ecology of Our Most Essential Native Trees. Doug will discuss simple steps that each of us can- and must take to bring about positive changes to the environment.

The impacts of extreme weather events and evidence of climate change are continuing to grow. So too is our understanding of the challenges we face, collectively, but the good news is that none of this is inevitable if we start making changes in our own backyard. Building resilience — the ability to adjust easily to or recover from a stress or change — is an important step in preparing to successfully address current and future pressures. We have an exciting lineup of speakers so join us virtually on Tuesday, January 25th from 8:30am – 12:00pm for the 2022 Environmental Summit.


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View the full summit agenda


Virtual Summit Agenda

8:30 – 8:45 Welcome
Brook McDonald, President/CEO, The Conservation Foundation
Barb Szczepaniak, Vice President for Programs, DuPage Foundation
Dan Cronin, DuPage County Board Chairman
Dan Hebreard, President Forest Preserve District of DuPage County


8:45 – 9:45 Nature’s Best Hope
Dr. Douglas W. Tallamy, T. A. Baker Professor of Agriculture in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware
Recent headlines about global insect declines and three billion fewer birds in North America are a bleak reality check about how ineffective our current landscape designs have been at sustaining the plants and animals that sustain us. To create landscapes that enhance local ecosystems rather than degrade them, we must add the native plant communities that sustain food webs, sequester carbon, maintain diverse native bee communities, and manage our watersheds. If we do this in half of the area now in lawn, we can create Homegrown National Park, a 20 million acre network of viable habitats that will provide vital corridors connecting the few natural areas that remain. This approach to conservation empowers everyone to play a significant role in the future of the natural world.


9:45 – 10:00 Questions


10:00—10:15 Building Resiliency in Your Yard with Conservation@Home
Jim Kleinwachter, Conservation@Home Program Director, The Conservation Foundation
The “typical” yard can easily be improved to help reduce water run-off, increase wildlife habitat, and improve the soil. The benefits of improving the environment are many including, reducing your water use, creating more area for birds and butterflies, reducing chemical use, less lawn mowing, and learning about invasive species that may need to be controlled in your yard. This educational presentation will highlight a variety of techniques for transforming your yard into a beautiful, habitat that will improve the environment and make your yard more resilient to climate change.


10:15 – 10:20 Break


10:20 – 11:00 30X30 Plan in Illinois: Actions to Fight Climate Change
Lindsay Keeney, Conservation Director, Illinois Environmental Council
Join us to discuss the international campaign to protect 30% land and water by 2030, and how Illinois can align with this ambitious goal. IEC has convened a coalition of conservation experts, community organizations, land trust, land and water management organizations, and more to develop a strategy for how Illinois can resolve its conservation issues in a comprehensive and equitable manner.


11:00 – 11:05 Questions


11:05 – 11:25 How can Regenerative Agriculture Help Build Climate Resiliency
Cliff McConville, Owner, All Grass Farms
Learn how All Grass Farms practices regenerative agriculture. One of the biggest potential benefits of regenerative agriculture is that it can help combat climate change. The thought is that regenerative agriculture’s strong focus on soil health and reduced tilling efforts can lead to more carbon being sequestered into the earth instead of being released into the atmosphere as a harmful greenhouse gas.


11:25 – 11:30 Questions


11:30—11:55 Relationships, Resiliency & Rivers – Long-Term Project Increases Opportunities for Fish & Paddlers
Jennifer Hammer, Director of Watershed Programs/Ecological Restoration
The Conservation Foundation has had it’s eye on the dam in the Hammel Woods Forest Preserve in Shorewood for over 20 years. Starting in the late 1990s with a canoe trip with the Executive Director of the Forest Preserve District of Will County, authoring a C2000 funded study on the impacts of dams in the DuPage River watershed and working with the Lower DuPage River Watershed Coalition to further confirm how that dam blocked the movement of fish to upstream reaches. The work of many partners and the critical funding from the Lower DuPage River Watershed Coalition has resulted in opening up fish passage from the lower reaches of the DuPage River up into the East and West Branches and the many small tributaries providing many more opportunities for fish and other aquatic species to adapt to our changing climate.


11:55 – 12:00 Questions/Closing Comments


Thanks to our sponsors:


Bedrock Earthscapes logo



Cool DuPage logo


DuPage Foundation logo 2021


Forest Preserve District of DuPage County logo


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