|Community members and the press are invited to celebrate and learn from Austin-area youth and educators who are working to take action against climate change and improve climate resilience through data-driven projects. 14 K-12 student groups from across the Austin area will be sharing their STEM-based sustainability projects at Austin City Hall on May 11 as part of the 7th annual Central Texas Student Innovation Showcase. Each student group collected data in their school community, identified a sustainability issue, designed a solution, and received a grant from the EcoRise Student Innovation Fund to bring their solution to life.
In addition, the Austin Youth Climate Equity Council members will present their community impact projects and recommendations to engage community members in Austin’s Climate Equity Plan. The Youth Council, now in its second year, offers local high school students a way to engage in civics and contribute their voices and ideas to improving climate resilience for all in Austin.
“I am so impressed by the dedication and passion that our youth leaders bring to addressing the challenges of climate change,” said Zach Baumer, the City of Austin’s Interim Chief Sustainability Officer. “Their innovative ideas and projects demonstrate that sustainability is not only a necessary goal but an achievable one. I am excited to see the impact that their work will have on our city and beyond.”
“Youth continue to offer unique perspectives on climate and environmental justice challenges and unmatched imagination and ingenuity when it comes to implementing climate solutions. EcoRise is proud to activate passionate K-12 students with resources to help bring their bright ideas to life,” said EcoRise Executive Director Jon Stott. “We are excited to provide the opportunity for the community to connect with, learn from, and celebrate these young changemakers.”
Since 2014, EcoRise and the City of Austin’s Office of Sustainability have partnered to make the Student Innovation Fund possible for K-12 students in the Austin area. Join us at the Showcase to discover this year’s projects, including improving learning gardens, adding water conservation features like ponds and rain barrels, and promoting sustainable transportation options like biking to school. Learn more about the student showcase and RSVP.
The Office of Sustainability and EcoRise have worked together to foster the Austin Youth Climate Equity Council since 2021. These young leaders have learned about sustainability, civic procedures, environmental justice, and how these concepts relate to improving their community’s health and well-being. Hear the Austin Youth Climate Equity Council discuss their findings and recommendations on transportation, food access, and green spaces at the event from 5:30-7:00 pm in City Hall Council Chambers. Learn more and RSVP.
About the City of Austin’s Office of Sustainability
Austin’s Office of Sustainability works to ensure a thriving, equitable, and ecologically resilient community by providing leadership, influencing positive action through engagement, and creating measurable benefits for Austin. The office works to achieve net-zero community-wide greenhouse gas emissions by 2040, a healthy and just local food system, resource-efficient strategies for municipal operations, tangible projects that demonstrate sustainability, and a resilient and adaptive city. Find out more at www.austintexas.gov/
EcoRise mobilizes a new generation of leaders to design healthy, just, and thriving communities for all. The national non-profit organization offers a range of curricula and programs for students, teachers, school districts, and partners, designed to advance environmental literacy, sustainable schools, and equitable access to green career pathways. EcoRise is currently supporting more than 8,000 teachers in helping over 400,000 students solve real-world sustainability challenges concerning energy, water, waste, transportation, air quality, food, and public spaces. To learn more about EcoRise, visit www.ecorise.org.