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Intermountain Sustainability Summit 
March 16, and March 18, 2022 
Live, Virtual Events  

Summit affiliated workshops are extended sessions for those seeking deeper exploration, connection, and collaboration with experts, colleagues and peers. 


Securing Utah's Balanced Water Future in a Climate Change World
Part 1: Wednesday, March 16, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Part 2: Friday, March 18, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Presented by the Utah Rivers Council featuring: 

Zach Frankel, Executive Director

Nick Halberg , Research & Policy Analyst
Lindsey Hutchison , Water Policy Associate

Climate Change threatens Utah's water supplies, ecosystems and economies, but simple solutions exist to avoid or mitigate these threats. There are numerous opportunities in Utah to implement a range of policies and programs to improve the governance of our water resources, rivers and lakes.

Many policy leaders have little idea what climate change holds for Utah's water future or how to adapt to this new world. This workshop covers the science, policy and politics; providing a comprehensive understanding of the challenges and opportunities before us. 

Come learn how we use water, who manages it, what policy options are available, and what successful strategies other Western states are utilizing to adapt to the pressures climate change is putting on water resources.

Presenters will explore four topics:

  1. Water supply governance and pricing policies;
  2. Climate change science and aquatic ecosystem services/impacts; 
  3. Water conservation and barriers to sustainable water policy in Utah;
  4. Utah watershed case studies, including the Great Salt Lake and Lake Powell.

The 2021 drought is part of a decades-long trend that climate change is placing on Utah's rivers, lakes, reservoirs, farms and cities. Many water bodies fell to their lowest levels in recorded history in 2021, and the trend is projected to continue. Informed policy leaders and the public have a much better chance of implementing sustainable water policies. 

Come away having a 360 degree understanding of what our water future can look like, and how you can make a significant difference in Utah's water future! 

Who should attend: water managers, local government and municipality representatives, policy leaders, industry representatives, farmers, community organizers, advocates and anyone with a stake in our water future.

Permaculture Design as a Framework for Climate Resiliency 
Friday, March 18, 8 a.m. to noon 

Presented by: 

Roslynn McCann, Associate Professor at Utah State University, Sustainable Communities

Permaculture is a design process that guides human communities in achieving the resilience and regenerative capacity of natural ecosystems. The principles and practices are drawn from ecological knowledge of traditional and Indigenous cultures integrated with modern scientific understanding and selected technology.

Permaculture design can be applied to build community and build resilience in light of climate change, all while attracting pollinators, conserving water, and growing primarily perennial edible food and forage systems.

During this workshop, participants will:

  • Calculate their rainwater harvesting potential based on average annual rainfall amounts in Salt Lake City; 
  • Explore alternative ways to use household and stormwater in an integrated design; β€― 
  • Conduct a needs and assets assessment of a design element, using a cherry tree as an example; 
  • Discuss their own landscapes in a facilitated discussion; and 
  • Practice applying real-world examples of permaculture design principles. 

Who should attend: community organizers, gardeners, landscapers, farmers, and those seeking to better understand how to design for sustainability. 

Become a Sustainability Super Champion and Save the World!
Friday, March 18, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. 

Presented by Viridescent, LLC featuring: 

Chance Thompson, Co-Founder / The Designer πŸΊ 
Karla Garcia , Co-Founder / The Researcher πŸ¦‰
Sean Nickerson, Co-Founder / The Architect πŸœ
Jake McMillanCo-Founder / The Creator βš‘

Are YOU tired of the doom and gloom world we live in? So are the VIRI_vigilantes πŸΊπŸ¦‰πŸœβš‘️. Join this immersive sustainability workshop to build and meet your sustainability alter-ego (the heroic, balanced, and optimistic change-maker from within). You'll become a comic book character, regenerative leader, and find inspiration unlike ever before.

Welcome to the #VIRIVERSE β™Ύ, where YOUR story as a change-making hero comes to life.

In this "ORIGIN" series workshop, our sustainability mentors will help you crack the code for weaving purpose and prosperity, and YOU will be given the key to saving the world and experiencing its beauty all at once. Let's break through the status quo.

We will be riding the #VIRIVERSE β™Ύ SLED Framework, sledding to a more sustainable way of making an impact on the world. Also... sledding is super fun, and we all need a bit more of that in our lives right now πŸ™ƒ.

The focus areas are:

  • S -- Storytelling: We'll help you drive support for your work & impact by inspiring others with your change-making adventure.
  • L -- Life Balance: We believe in a new way of working, where health, impact, happiness, and financial stability measure success.
  • E -- Emotional Intelligence: Learn to lead and follow through regenerative leadership principles and practices.
  • D -- Design & Systems thinking: Think big, act small, as we work together to evolve capitalism into a circular economy. 

Participants will get an immersive experience by participating in this live session. Should participants want to continue their change-making adventure and build their complete sustainability alter-ego with VIRIDESCENT, they can provide their email address to stay plugged in.

Who should attend: sustainability professionals, students, community organizers, advocates, and everyone interested in being a sustainability champion.