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Climate Change Research Month

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This March, York University's Organized Research Units (ORUs) host the second annual Climate Change Research Month with a series of events aimed at generating awareness of climate change research and mobilizing the campus community to take action.

Climate Change Research Month supports the University's commitment to climate change action through the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. All events are open to the public. Share and retweet @YUResearch with the hashtag #YUResearch #YorkUSDGs.

Please check back often for updates. If you would like your climate change research highlighted, please contact Corey Allen. If you are interested in Climate Change Research Month and would like to participate in the future, contact Prof. Elaine Coburn, Director of the Centre for Feminist Research.


Modelling the Health Impacts of Global Warming in Malawi, with James Orbinski
March 1, 2023, 1-2 PM
Hybrid event

The Dahdeleh Institute for Global Health Research presents its 2022-2023 Dahdaleh Institute Seminar Series. In this seminar, Dr. James Orbinski will explore the partnership between York University, University of California, and University of Malawi to expand dialogic and iterative engagement of the affected communities in the Chilwa Basin – with the objective to help further the understanding of policy makers and/or practitioners in the framing, delivery, and communication of our research on the health impacts of global warming.

Labour and the Climate Crisis: Developing a Worker-and-Equity Centred Clean Energy Economy
March 2, 2023, 6 - 7 PM

Keynote Speaker Dr. Lara Skinner is the Executive Director of Cornell ILR’s Climate Jobs Institute. Dr. Skinner is a nationally recognized expert in the labour and employment impacts of climate change, clean energy policy, and the transition to a low-carbon economy. Under Lara’s direction, Cornell has designed jobs-led climate programs for eight U.S. states and helped form coalitions composed of labour unions, elected leaders, environmental organizations and industry experts in states like Texas, Illinois, New York and Rhode Island.

Respondent Dr. Marjorie Griffin Cohen is an economist who is a professor emeritus of Political Science and Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University.  She has written extensively in the areas of political economy and public policy with special emphasis on issues concerning, labour, the Canadian economy, women, electricity deregulation, energy, climate change and labour, and international trade agreements.

Moderator Nathi Zamisa is completing an M.A. in Black Studies: Theories of Race and Racism in the Department of Social and Political Thought at York University. Nathi is currently the President of the York University Graduate Students Association, the Chair of the York Community Housing Association, a Board Member of the Global Labour Research Centre, and a Member of the York Senate's Academic Planning, Policy, and Research Committee.

The John Eleen Annual Lecture in Global Labour is co-sponsored by the Ontario Federation of Labour, UNIFOR, LIUNA Ontario Provincial District Council, Goldblatt Partners LLP, and Cavaluzzo LLP.

A Climate for Change? A History of Political Response to Climate Change in Canada
March 7, 2023, 12 - 1 PM
7th Floor Lounge, Kaneff Tower

Organized by the Robarts Centre for Canadian Studies

Within the context of the current global discussion on climate change, Canada’s political response to the ongoing climate crisis effects how our country is perceived on the international stage. Canada’s historical and contemporary position as an energy extraction state is key to the nation’s identity and economy, influencing its political decisions and it disproportionately contributes to, and suffers from, the consequences of global warming, and this tension is observable in current political discourse. This discussion begins with brief a global analysis of Green parties in EU and Australasia parliamentary systems. Several key themes were found to contribute to the emergence and success of Green parties globally and these themes are then compared to the history of the Green Party in Canada to analyze where the similarities and differences lie.  This presentation, by examining the relationship between human concern surrounding climate change and its iteration in political support, will add to important conversations surrounding Canada and the rise of concern at home and abroad about the issue of global climate change.

Book Launch: The End of This World: Climate Justice in So-Called Canada with authors Angele Alook and David Gray-Donald
March 8, 2023, 12-1:30 PM
Second Student Centre

Co-sponsored by York University's Global Labour Research Centre; Centre for Feminist Research; Centre for Indigenous Knowledges and Languages; Office of the Associate Vice Presidents of Indigenous Initiatives; and School of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies.

Join us for a book launch and conversation of The End of This World: Climate Justice in So-Called Canada, with authors Angele Alook (York University) and David Gray-Donald (The Grind). The climate crisis is here, and the end of this world—a world built on land theft, resource extraction, and colonial genocide—is on the horizon. In this compelling roadmap to a livable future, Indigenous sovereignty and climate justice go hand in hand.

Smudging in Sharm El-Sheikh: Experiences from Indigenous Peoples at COP 27
March 9, 2023, 12 PM

Join Professor Angele Alook and Dr. Graeme Reed as they discuss their experiences attending the twenty-seventh session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 27) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, held in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt. COP 27, heralded as an implementation COP, saw the greatest number of Indigenous Peoples representatives since the signing of the Paris Agreement in 2015. Despite the growing representation, decision texts referring to Indigenous Peoples declined compared to COP 26 in Glasgow. Professor Alook and Dr. Reed will unpack this reality, describing more about participating in the Indigenous Peoples caucus, key negotiation and political outcomes for Indigenous Peoples, and outlining some of the tensions of showing up as Indigenous in a non-Indigenous, colonial process. The presentation will end with some updates on their research focusing on uplifting Indigenous self-determined climate leadership.

March 10, 2023, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Allan Gardens Children's Conservatory (19 Horticultural Avenue, Toronto)

Sensorium: Centre for Digital Arts and Technology present a double bill entitled “Terrestrial” featuring Sri-Lankan born Canadian sound artist Seylon Stills, and a trio of Archer Pechawis, Grace Grothaus and Joel Ong in a site-specific performance at the Allan Gardens Conservatorium. Stills’ interactive creations incorporate nature inspired soundscapes, field recordings and immersive sonic textures, exploring spatialization and proprioception to create a sense of interconnectedness between participants and the natural world. The trio of Pechawis, Grothaus and Ong present a meditative performance combining traditional Cree song, wind data, tuning forks, and other instrumentation. By emphasizing the daily circadian rhythm of life, the artists remind us of the importance of being attuned to the natural cycles and rhythms of the world around us. They encourage us to slow down and take the time to appreciate the invisible phenomena that are all around us, and to reconnect with the natural world in a profound and meaningful way.

Fire and Floods in Our Own Backyard: Examining Climate Change Displacement and Internal Migration in Canada
March 16, 2023, 12 - 1 PM

Within Canada, climate displacement manifests in various ways in the face of recurrent sudden events such as floods and wildfires yet the topic has received very little scholarly attention in the country. While some are forced to move either permanently or temporarily, others choose to move to safer areas to mitigate future hazard risks. Whether we talk about evacuation, displacement, relocation, planned retreat, migration, or even the symbolic use of the term “refugee,” all these cases refer to human mobility induced by climate change, a phenomenon that an increasing number of people face.
Join us as Dr. Yvonne Su, Assistant Professor from the Department of Equity Studies, Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies here in York University discuss Fire and Floods in Our Own Backyard: Examining Climate Change Displacement and Internal Migration in Canada on Thursday, March 16, 2023 at 12:00pm – 1:00pm via Zoom.

World Water Day Research Celebration
March 20, 2023, 9 AM - 4 PM
Vari Hall Rotunda & the Link between Vari Hall and Central Square

Sponsored by Faculty of Science and Office of the Vice President Research & Innovation

Undergraduate students, graduate students and faculty members doing water related research at York will be presenting their work and will engage with the York community. All are invited to stop by and learn about the World Water Day and ground-breaking research at York tackling water crises in Canada and across the globe.

Moving from academia to the water industry; improving the resilience of water infrastructure to climate change
March 20, 2023, 1 - 4 PM
2nd Floor, Second Student Centre

Organized by Stephanie Gora for The International Water Association, Young Water Professional, Canadian Association of Water Quality and One WATER Institute

Event sponsors: Lassonde School of Engineering, University of Toronto, Toronto Metropolitan University

York Community members can register for free.

Omiwatari: Documentary Screening and Dialogue on the Cultural Losses of Climate Change
March 20, 2023, 4 - 5:30 PM
Second Student Centre

With Sapna Sharma, Department of Biology, York University and Zeesy Powers, filmmaker
Omiwatari depicts the first year in memory that Lake Suwa, site of a millennia-old phenomenon, remained ice-free all winter. The post-industrial landscapes of Japan’s rust belt bear witness to the price we pay for progress and our remaining possibilities to adapt to those losses. Within the next 50 years, the gods of this lake, whose annual reunion across the ice brought good fortune and balance between humans and nature, will never meet again. We are the cause, and it is up to us to find a way forward for ourselves.

Omiwatari is based on the research of Dr. Sapna Sharma and in collaboration with Mr. Kiyoshi Miyasaka, chief priest of the Tenaga Jinga shrine. It is presented as part of the 2023 World Water Day Conference.

A dialogue on the cultural losses of climate change and a Q&A will follow the screening.

UNDERGROWTH: Photography and the colonial gaze on the natural world
March 22, 2023, 10-11AM
Virtual Event

Organized by Laurence Butet-Roch, a photographer, writer, educator, and PhD student in environmental studies at York University, where she focuses on environmental visual communications and decolonial approaches to photography.

Artist Sara Angelucci will unpack the ideas behind, Undergrowth, her ten-year exhibition survey currently on view at the Varley Art Gallery in Markham, which examines the ways in which photographic practices have contributed to the divide between humans and nature. The exhibition is on view until April 30th and a virtual tour can be accessed here.

Climate Risk / Change Day
March 23, 2023, 1 - 3:30 PM
Virtual event (Register online here)

Organized by the Risk and Insurance Studies Centre

As part of our commitment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, Risk and Insurance Studies Centre is delighted to invite everyone to a virtual workshop that brings together renowned international scholars and influential industry leaders. The workshop aims at generating awareness of climate change risks and mobilizing the community to take action.

Featuring the following panelists:

Jennifer Winter, University of Calgary on "Energy Affordability and Net Zero Transition"
Marcos Pelenur, The Behavioural Insights Team, Americas on "Using Behavioural Insights to Support a Net Zero Society"
Madanmohan Ghosh, Economist, Bank of Canada on "Economic Modeling of Climate Change and Mitigation Policies for the Macroeconomy: Current Status and Some Analysis"
Andrew Hobbs, University of San Francisco on "Machine Learning with Satellite and Survey Data for Index Insurance"

A Planetary Health Advocacy Framework, with Carol Devine and Yasmin Al-Sahili
March 29, 2023, 1-2 PM

The Dahdaleh Institute for Global Health Research presents its 2022-2023 Dahdaleh Institute Seminar Series. In this seminar, Dahdaleh Institute Community Scholar Carol Devine and research assistant Yasmin Al-Sahili will discuss the Planetary Health Advocacy Framework. This framework aims to visualize key advocacy principles, actors and actions for humanitarian, global health and climate actors and beyond. Please join this interactive session for an overview of the crowd-sourced updated framework and contribute your feedback to the final (but living) version.

The Art, Science, and Social Science of Climate Change
March 30, 2023, 4 PM
Virtual (Register here)

Climate change is the existential crisis of our times. We will need all the ways that way know -- through the arts, sciences and social sciences -- to take up the climate emergency, for human beings and for the natural world that sustains us all. In this one hour panel, we bring together a scientist, a social scientist, an environmental studies scholar, and a film director to talk about how their work takes up climate change and the challenges it presents. The aim is to invite reflection on how we can understand and mitigate climate change, from the perspective of two scientists, a social scientist and a filmmaker working on climate change.

Panel: Dr. Laura McKinnon, Dr. Joanna Robinson, Shabnam Sukhdev, and Dr. Byomkesh Talukder
Chair: Elaine Coburn, Director of the Centre for Feminist Research