Energy Efficiency

Celebration at Millennium Park

Tuesday, August 10
Live Entertainment at 7pm
Film Screening at 8pm

Open to the public for free.

7:00-8:00 p.m.: Performances, music, fun activities and speeches
8:00-10:00 p.m.: Screening of Carbon Nation

Jay Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park
201 E. Randolph St., between Michigan Ave and Columbus Ave

The City of Chicago will host a Carbon Nation Celebration to celebrate the power of every-day climate change solutions for families, businesses and citizens. The event will include:

  • Performances by comedian Hal Sparks and the Happiness Club
  • Family activities and exhibits from the Museum of Science and industry
  • Celebrity appearances on the green carpet by the star of SHREK THE MUSICAL
  • Speeches from Chicago Department of Environment & Carbon Nation director
  • The world premiere and free screening of Peter Byck’s Carbon Nation film

Celebrity attendees include:

  • Mayor Daley–invited
  • Bill Kurtis, acclaimed documentary host and producer
  • Hal Sparks, actor and comedian
  • Suzanne Malec-McKenna, commissioner, Chicago Department of Environment
  • Peter Byck, director and producer of Carbon Nation
  • Star of Broadway in Chicago’s SHREK THE MUSICAL
  • The Happiness Club

Attendees also include those featured in the film:

  • Van Jones – Founder “Green For All” – Green Jobs Activist
  • Bernie Karl – “Crazy Alaskan” Geothermal Pioneer
  • Cliff Etheredge – West Texas Cotton Farmer turned Wind Farm Organizer
  • David Etheredge – Son of Cliff and Partner in Wind Farm
  • Dan Nolan – US Army Col. Retired
  • Art Rosenfeld – Energy Efficiency Pioneer and Retired Commissioner of the California Energy Commission
  • Michael Dunham – from JACO – “Fridge Guy”

This event is to celebrate the city’s commitment to environmental leadership and tackling climate change. In 2008, the city launched the Chicago Climate Action Plan which focuses on five major strategies—from energy efficient buildings and renewable energy to transportation, waste pollution and adaptation—to reduce Chicago’s greenhouse emissions 25 percent by 2020.

Here are some film stills:

Here is more info about the Chicago Climate Action Plan.

This event is promoted by Empirical Opera member, Samantha Mattone.


Dear Empirical Operans-

We have to take a moment to heartily endorse this  workshop.

It’s educational presentations and trainings cover sustainability efforts in Land, Water, Air, Energy and Community. It connects you with excellent, motivated, and resourceful citizens committed to activist projects. And it connects you with resources from the City of Chicago’s Dept. of the Environment and Chicago Center for Green Technology.

Check it out; orientation sessions happening this week!

Spring 2010 Leader Training

C3 Outreach info listed below and flyer linked here

Chicago Conservation Corps (C3)
You care. Do Something. We’ll Help.

Spring 2010 Environmental Leadership Training Series
The Chicago Conservation Corps is now recruiting for its Spring 2010 Environmental Leadership Training Series. During the training, you’ll learn from community and environmental leaders about urban environmental challenges and opportunities for change; then you’ll lead an environmental service project in your community with C3 support and resources.

Attend one of the orientations listed below to learn more. For questions or to reserve a seat, please contact (312) 743-9283 or

Thursday, March 25 – 7pm – 8pm
South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S. South Shore Dr., Chicago, IL 60649

Saturday, March 27 – 1pm – 2pm
Chicago Center for Green Technology, 445 N. Sacramento Blvd., Chicago, IL 60612

Monday, March 29 – 12pm – 1pm
City Hall 11th Floor, 121 N. Lasalle, Chicago, IL 60602

To apply for the C3 Leadership Training Series, you must be a City of Chicago resident and attend one orientation. The Spring 2010 training will be held at the Chicago Center for Green Technology, 445 N. Sacramento Blvd, Saturdays, April 10, 17, 24, and May 1 from 9:30am – 1:30pm.  A mandatory field trip will take place on Saturday, May 8.  A $75 fee covers course participation and project support. Financial assistance is available upon request.

For more information about the Chicago Conservation Corps Leadership Training Course, the Chicago Conservation Clubs, or to learn about other volunteer opportunities, visit

Promoted by E.O. member, Jason Greenberg (2009 Chicago Conservartion Corps Leader)

As a ‘graduate’ from this program, I can tell you it was a great experience and it supports a valuable social mission: literally the empowering of the individual (YOU) to make a difference in your community.

Composting & Gardening Projects, Water-Barrel Rain Capture for gardening, Vermicomposting Demos (that’s worm farming!), Energy Efficiency and Home Weatherization Workshops, Creative Reuse Materials Arts & Crafts, Raffles and more…!

Learn how to save the planet… and a little money too! Join us for…

Family Eco Night: Thursday, March 18

beginning at 5:30: Food and Fellowship for Pulaski Academy Families
6:00-7:30:  Workshops and Presentations (open to all)

•    How can I save money on heating bills?
•    How long would I have to ride a bike to power a light bulb?
•    Is there something I can do with these food scraps besides throwing them away?
•    How do worms help plants grow?
•    How can cereal boxes become works of art?

Food, prizes, fun family workshops, student presentations, arts and crafts

Pulaski Elementary Fine Arts Academy‬‎
‪2230 West McLean Avenue‬
‪(near Armitage Ave. & Milwaukee Ave.)‬

‪(773) 534-4391‬ /‬

Promoted by E.O. member, Jason Greenberg

Presented with Columbia College Chicago’s Center for Community Arts Partnerships, Illinois Parent Information Resource Center, City of Chicago, and Chicago Conservation Corps

Join the Climate Cycle Solar Schools Ride

Save the Date: May 15th, 2010

Biking, Bicycle, Bike-a-thon

On May 15th, 2010, Climate Cycle will be hosting its annual Solar Schools Ride. For additional registration and ride information, click here.

Climate Cycle is a non-profit organization that empowers youth to become leaders of the clean energy movement by installing solar energy systems and funding sustainability education in local public schools. This is made possible by alliances between students, community organizations and concerned citizens to usher in the new green economy.

Climate Cycle creates local solutions to global pollution. At the inaugural bike-a-thon in May 2009, 350 participants raised $67,000 to install solar energy on four schools. Because more money is spent on utilities than textbooks and computers combined, the time to retool our schools is now.

The time to help the environment and our children is now. I urge you all to participate in and support Climate Cycle’s programs which will directly benefit our children, while furthering Mayor Daley’s goal of making Chicago the greenest city in America.

—U.S. Secretary of Education and former Chicago Public School CEO Arne Duncan

For more info about Climate Cycle check out their website.

Its a momentous time for Greywater Systems (energy-efficient, resource-conserving plumbing systems that reuse water for secondary purposes within the house before shunting it into the city’s wastewater stream). There have been complex code and zoning regulations and legal blocks hindering implementation of greywater systems in Chicago. But the tide is turning; See the first city permit-approved rain-water capturing/greywater system implemented in the Yannell Zero Net Energy Residence designed by Doug Farr & Associates.

Yannell Zero Net Energy Residence designed by Doug Farr & Associates

This project is being tested and studied to gather information about the energy efficiencies and operational data about grey-water systems so that it may be replicated and adapted for future Green Architecture projects and for the redevelopment of residences and commercial structures in Chicago.

ALSO, there is a Greywater Workshop happening at the Chicago Center For Green Technology this Thursday, its free and open to the public and NOW is a great time to be learning and disseminating information about Greywater systems.
Recommended by E.O. member, Mark Miller!

Greywater Harvesting Systems in Residential Buildings
November 19, 2009  /  6:00-8:00 pm  / FREE 

Speakers: John R. Bauer & Stuart Bailin
Wahaso Water Harvesting Solutions

Chicago Center for Green Technology
445 N. Sacramento Blvd.

Here are some of the elements of the Yannell House’s Greywater system:1. Pipes capture rainwater runoff from the roof.
2.& 3. Timer valves allow a 5 min delay for debris washout into sewers- the solenoid valves open and the system captures the rainwater into the house’s greywater system.4. Pressure sensors detect stability of the waterflow through the micron filters.
5. Water level sensor on greywater tank toggles bwtweeen bypass or city-water intake to compensate for dry spells. Then diverts rainwater into a 550 gallon greywater cistern.