Heather Spence, Marine Biologist
Orchestrating Coastal Marine Ecology Investigation and Outreach

Heather Spence, Marine Biologist

2016 – Futuristic hope

Worried about the state of our global ecosystem? Already 2016 is off to a good start with 5 forward-looking, inspiring events that took place in DC. They provide a hopeful glimpse at what’s to come in the not-so-distant future:


Feb 5 @ Inter-American Development Bank (IDB): “Colombia 2030: A Sustainable and Peaceful Future”

This morning the President of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos, beautifully described his vision for prioritizing education to reach ambitious yet possible goals


Feb 4 @ Inter-American Development Bank (IDB): “It’s disruption time! How the collaborative economy is transforming world economies”

Robin Chase, Founder of ZipCar, and Luis Alberto Moreno, IDB President, discussed how ‘excess capacity’ – e.g., cars sitting unused – means opportunity for business and sustainability. Why should people invest in having only one job, when having several jobs provides more job satisfaction, diversity and security? If you think this is abstract futuristic talk, you should have heard the IDB employee’s enthusiasm. There will still be roles for institutions, but they will play adapted roles.


Feb 4 @ Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences: “Social media tour of Sentient Chamber”

Hosted by Alana Quinn of CPNAS, Philip Beesley led a tour of his art installation “Sentient Chamber” which explores human-nature interactions with whispers, subtlety and mesmerizing fractals that draw you in to their enveloping tentacles and visions of a more gentle future.


Feb 4 @ Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences: “Ideation, Translation, and Realization: DC Art Science Evening Rendezvous (DASER)”

What is creativity? How do we use it to promote a sustainable future? Rich discussion included recognition of a need to provide opportunities for slow, complex, fragile, inter-disciplinary explorations, both in school and in the workplace

Presenters: Kimberly Suda-Blake (Senior Program Director, National Academies Keck Futures Initiative); David A. Edwards (Founder and Director, Le Laboratoire); Richard N. Foster (Co-Chair, Presidents’ Circle of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine); Patricia Olynyk (Director, Graduate School of Art, Washington University); Philip Beesley (Director, Living Architecter Systems Group); JD Talasek (Director, Cultural Programs, National Academy of Sciences)


Jan 29 @ Georgetown University/ Indigenous Delegation “The Invisible Killer – Radioactive Pollution in Unsuspected Places”

Even Snowzilla couldn’t get this group down. Native American and #CleanUpTheMines representatives gathered to raise awareness about thousands of hazardous abandoned uranium mines throughout the United States and promote a stronger bonds between human groups and with nature


For more pictures: https://www.instagram.com/heathers2pence/ 


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Solar Power!

This is from the Swiss Embassy —

Riding on Sunshine

Swiss schoolteacher Louis Palmer and his SolarTaxi are driving around the world on a mission—to show the world that solar energy technologies are feasible and ripe for development. The SolarTaxi, built in cooperation with four Swiss universities, is fueled entirely by the sun. By the time he finishes his trip in December 2008, Palmer will have driven through five continents, over 40 countries and over 33,000 miles without spending a penny on gasoline.

Palmer arrived on the East Coast of the United States last month and held several events under the banner of ThinkSwiss-Brainstorm the Future to promote alternative energy together with the Swiss Embassy in Washington, D.C., The Consulate General in New York, and swissnex Boston. Palmer presented his car to students and staff at such prestigious universities as Georgetown, New York University, and Harvard, among others. He also gave test rides to Washington, D.C. government officials and drove UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to work in Manhattan on his morning commute.

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Fiorella Terenzi says, the more I study astrophysics, the more awe I feel about the universe. There’s music in the stars.

My great grandfather Francis Jacob Shreve, born Feb 10 1880, told me Let your habits be your allies.

Victor Wouk shared with me that being open to unexpected opportunities can lead you in interesting directions.

My grandmother Esther Simon Dunkelberger said, if things don’t go as you plan it’s an adventure.

Brad Waller says, always CTSIYPS (check to see if your partner is sane).

David Howard says, perform like a red high heeled shoe.

“The investigation of truth is in one way hard and in another way easy. An indication of this is found in the fact that no one is able to attain the truth entirely, while on the other hand no one fails entirely, but everyone says something true about the nature of things, and by the union of all a considerable amount is amassed.”


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