2016 Dynamics Workshop Photos

Congrats to the Dynamics of Climate Class of 2016. This professional development workshop Dynamics of Climate equips middle and high school science teachers with activities and lesson plans about climate change science & solutions to improve climate literacy and encourage sustainable living practices at school and at home.  These 26 teachers from urban, suburban and rural school districts are responsible for teaching 4,404 students every year!  The schools represented are shown below.

The 2016 workshop was made possible thanks to sponsorship from the City of Carmel, Noblesville East Middle School, Purdue Climate Change Research Center,  Sierra Club Hoosier Chapter, Environmental Education Association of Indiana, Hoosier Interfaith Power & Light, Earth Charter Indiana, Rectify Solar, Inc, Solar Systems of Indiana, and Advocare Brandy Yost.  Many thanks to Mayor Brainard, Sue Maki, Brandy Yost, Leslie Webb, Alexia Lopez, and Cindy Muse.  Special thanks to Rick Towle for partnering with CGI to co-host the workshop.

  • Carmel High School (3)
  • Noblesville East Middle School
  • Fishers High School
  • Mississinewa High School (2)
  • Herron High School
  • Lebanon High School
  • Bosse High School
  • Edgewood Junior High School (2)
  • Doe Creek Middle School
  • Peru Junior High School
  • William Henry Harrison High (Evansville)
  • New Tech Institute High School
  • F.J. Reitz High School
  • IUPUI Students (9)
  • Oaklanden
  • Sense Charter School
  • Paramount

Sustainable Living Seminar - Merchants of Doubt

Wednesday, September 21, 2016        Merchant_of_Doubt_image
6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Carmel Clay Public Library
55 4th Avenue Southeast, Carmel, IN 46032



Are you confused about climate change, or know someone who is?  Climate scientists have been warning us for years and have shown multiple lines of evidence of global warming. Yet, the public and some elected officials doubt the science.  So, what does it take to cast doubt, and who would do such a thing?  Merchants of Doubt reveals how the same tactics and strategies and even some of the same people used to cast doubt on the science that linked cigarettes to cancer are being used again to cast doubt on climate science.  The film shows how two Republicans, who believe we have a moral responsibility to future generations, went from being climate deniers to climate advocates.  This powerful documentary from the acclaimed documentarian, Robert Kenner (Food Inc.), is based on the book by Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway.

“Merchants of Doubt” tells the story of how a loose-knit group of high-level scientists and scientific advisers, with deep connections in politics and industry, ran effective campaigns to mislead the public and deny well-established scientific knowledge over four decades. The same individuals who claim the science of global warming is "not settled" have also denied the truth about studies linking smoking to lung cancer, coal smoke to acid rain, and CFCs to the ozone hole. "Doubt is our product," wrote one tobacco executive. These "experts" supplied it.  Find out how Robert Kenner investigates the shadowy world of professional skeptics, whose services are bought and paid for by corporations, think tanks and other special interests to cast doubt and delay public and governmental action of climate change.



2015 Legislative Session

Oppose HB 1321 - Pro-Fracking

Bill origin: ALEC?      
Bill author: Rep Koch  
Co-authors: VanNatter, Frye

Status: Referred to House Natural Resources, but was not heard.

This pro-fracking bill would prohibit local government entities, cities, towns and counties from regulating hydraulic fracking.  A similar bill was introduced in 2014 and also died in committee.

Youtube Video - The Fracketts


Sign up for the Dynamics of Climate Workshop
2-Day Professional Development Workshop for
Middle and High School Science Teachers.

Dates:  June 20-21, 2017
Times:  10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Location:  Noblesville East Middle School, 1625 Field Dr. Noblesville, 46060  (map)
Room: 1231
Workshop is limited.
  • Work in small groups on activities you can use in your classroom.
  • Bring your laptop to review new lesson plans and discuss with group.
  • Earn Professional Development Points!
  • Limited assistance is available to qualifying teachers to help offset expenses such as travel and daycare expenses.  To qualify, you must be a middle or high school science teacher present for both days of the workshop. Assistance will be assigned in the order in which you register.
Participants will learn activities and lesson plans for -
  • Climate Systems
  • Greenhouse Gases
  • Greenhouse Effect
  • Carbon Cycle
  • The Earth’s Energy Budget
  • Climate Data, Variability and Change
  • Changes in the Climate System
  • Adaptations and Mitigation
  • Wedge Game
  • Action and Impacts
  • Leslie Webb, Carmel Green Initiative president, trained at Purdue to facilitate this program
  • Brandy Yost, High School Biology Teacher, trained at Purdue to facilitate this program
  • Natalie Webb, Middle School Science Teacher
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, 2007) has concluded that global warming is unequivocal and that human activity is likely the main cause. The National Research Council’s Grand Challenges in Environmental Sciences (NRC, 2000a) identified four "grand challenges" that are directly linked to climate and climate change.  Additionally, the National Science Foundation has identified climate prediction and variability as a core study area.  Hence, it is vital that adults/teachers and students learn about climate and climate change.

The workshop will address four general questions: What is a climate system and its components?  What are causes and effects of component change?  What are the impacts of these changes?  What can we do about it?  The workshop will actively engage participants in learning through a combination of large and small group activity and discussion that is driven by climate data and visualizations. Participants will gain an understanding of climate variability, the interactions of natural and human systems, and the role of climate data and modeling in decision-making.

The workshop is designed to prepare middle and high school science teachers to both understand the science of climate and climate change and the methods for effectively teaching about climate and climate change.  The workshop consists of rich data sets and visualization activities that are model learning experiences and that address the major misconceptions students and adults hold about climate, global warming and climate change. The workshop was designed to align with a conceptual framework and are: 1) grounded in the research on students’ and adults’ conceptions of climate and climate change, 2) based on instructional activities and experiences that engage participants in analyzing and interpreting climatic data sets and visualizations and that require the application of scientific concepts, and 3) designed in accordance with the research on effective teacher professional development. The workshop promotes active learning and collaboration.  Participating teachers will qualify to earn Professional Development Points.

Here's how some science teachers are planning to use the information learned at the workshops...

"I plan to incorporate this into my ecology unit. We are also practicing problem based learning, so I am interested to see what is going on at a community level."  8th grade science teacher.

"I need the best and latest data to help students understand that climate change is real."  9th grade biology teacher.

"I would like to use this information to improve the Global Climate Change unit of my Environmental Science course."  11-12th grade AP Environmental Science / Physical Geology teacher


Past participants include teachers from Boone, Grant, Hamilton, Johnson, Marion, Miami, and Vanderburgh counties:
  • Carmel High School (8)
  • University High School
  • Guerin Catholic High School
  • Noblesville High School (2)
  • Hamilton Southeastern High School  (2)
  • Fishers High School  (3)
  • Zionsville Community High School
  • Pike High School
  • Brebeuf Jesuit
  • Excel Center
  • Crispus Attucks Medical Magnet H. S.
  • Southwood Jr/Sr High School
  • Mississinewa High School (2)
  • William Henry Harrison HS
    (West Lafayette)
  • Herron High School (2)
  • Greenwood Community HS
  • Lebanon High School
  • Bosse High School
  • Peru Junior High School
  • Bedford-North Lawrence HS
  • William Henry Harrison HS (Evansville)
  • New Tech Institute High School
  • F.J. Reitz High School
  • Carmel Middle School
  • Creekside Middle School
  • Noblesville West Middle School
  • Noblesville East Middle School (2)
  • Emma Donnan Middle School
  • Franklin Township Middle School East  (3)
  • Franklin Township Middle School West  (2)
  • Edgewood Junior High School (2)
  • Doe Creek Middle School
  • IUPUI (9)
  • Oaklanden Elementary
  • Sense Elementary Charter School
  • Paramount Elementary
  • Butler University










Click here to see photos from our workshops!



Many thanks to our Partners, Sponsors and Facilitators!

This workshop is offered by Carmel Green Initiative in partnership with Noblesville East Middle School, the City of Carmel, and Purdue University.

This program was developed at Purdue University by the Departments of Curriculum and Instruction, Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, and Agronomy  with a grant from the National Science Foundation, Geoscience Education program.  The project directors are Dan Shepardson(PI), Professor of Geoenvironmental and Science Education, Departments of Curriculum and Instruction and Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Purdue University and Dev Niyogi (CoPI), Indiana State Climatologist and Associate Professor, Departments of Agronomy and Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Purdue University.














Hamilton County Soil & Water Conservation
The Hamilton County Soil & Water Conservation Hamilton_County_Soil_and_Water_Conservation_District District organizes various workshops throughout the year.



2016 Native Tree SALE!!!
Don't miss this sale!  Hamilton County Soil & Water Conservation District is offering over 30 varieties of native trees and shrubs for only $25.  Payment and orders are due before Saturday, Sept. 3. Read more.





Mission Monarch Habitat Creation Workshop  MissionMonarch
Come tour St. Peter's award-winning native habitat landscaping on Monday, Aug 15, 6-8 p.m. Approximately 2.5 acres of land were restored to prairie, pollinator gardens, rain gardens and bioswale using a variety of native wildflowers, grasses, sedges, trees and shrubs.  In addition to providing the awe and beauty of nature, the restored landscaping promotes stewardship of God’s creation, creates a habitat for God’s little creatures (insects, butterflies, birds, and small mammals), significantly reduces its carbon footprint and maintenance costs, requires less mowing and use of chemicals, and promotes better drainage and recharge of the White River watershed.  It’s very impressive and gives you great ideas for replacing your own manicured, fossil fuel intensive lawns. Be inspired and learn how to create a native habitat in your own yard, neighborhood, business or church.  Read more.



Rain on Main is back!
Painted rain barrels from the art competition will be on display along Main street from Aug. 13-19. In addition to a formal panel of judges, the public is invited to vote for their favorite in a "People's Choice" contest.  The barrels will be featured at the Aug. 20 Carmel Farmers Market where the barrels will be auctioned off to the highest bidders in a silent auction, will be held with all proceeds going to educational signage in Carmel parks. Read more.


Native Plant Kits
Orders & payment are due by April 23rd

Native plants are those that have grown and thrived in this area since before settlers made this area home.  Native plants are beautiful, low maintenance, and provide ideal food for many pollinators! This spring take the guesswork out of your landscaping and go native by purchasing one of the Soil and Water Conservation District’s native plant kits.
Each native plant kit is contains 50 native plants for $120 and takes the guesswork out of plant selection by providing a set of plants that will be perfect for your yard. There is a kit for any area of your landscape including pollinator garden, rain garden (for wetter areas), prairie garden, and shade garden.  Each kit contains 10 different species of native plants and can fill a space anywhere from 50 to 150 square feet.
Plant kit orders can be placed online at or by visiting the SWCD office at 1717 Pleasant Street in Noblesville. Orders and payment are due by April 24th.  The plant kits will be available for pick up at the SWCD office on Friday May 13th.

More information on native plants and additional sources for native plant purchases can be found on the Hamilton County SWCD website (

Questions regarding the plant sale or SWCD resources can be directed to Claire Lane at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 317-773-2181.


Creating a Sustainable Homestead on your Suburban Lot
Sunday, April 2nd, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. HomesteadingPhotos
Hamilton County 4-H Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall C
2003 Pleasant St.
Registration begins at 8:30
$15 per person, includes lunch featuring local ingredients
Register Online
Producing your own vegetables, eggs, and honey is no longer just for rural homeowners and farmers. It doesn’t take acres of land to provide fresh healthy food for your family. Join the Hamilton County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) and Purdue Extension Hamilton County for an introduction to homesteading by several local experts.
Education sessions on backyard beekeeping and chickens, local food sources, and an introduction to home food production as well as the basics of food preservation, will all be covered by local experts. An urban soil health expert will teach how to develop healthy, productive soils for gardens. Additionally, SWCD and Purdue Extension staff will share with attendees the many local resources available to them to start these efforts.
Beekeeping 101 - Kate Franzman of Bee Public

Intro to Backyard Chickens - Andrew Brake of Naptown Chickens

Backyard Conservation: How we can help! - Claire Lane of HCSWCD & Diane Turner of Purdue Extention

Eating Local: Where to find local food & overview of home production - Chef  Thom England of Ivy Tech Culinary Program and co-founder of Dig-IN

Urban Soil Health - Kevin Allison of Marion County SWCD

Food Preservation Basics - Joyce Moore of Urban Patch

See Flyer

See News Release

Visit Hamilton County Soil & Water Website

2015 Native Tree Sale
Orders & Payment are due Sept. 3, 2015

Free Pond Management Workshop
Wednesday, July 29, and
Wednesday, August 5, 2015
6:30-8:30 p.m.
John Hensel Government Community Room
Pre-registration is appreciated by contacting 
Jake Houchins at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  or 317-773-2181.
There are over 1,000 neighborhood stormwater ponds in Hamilton County and many are plagued by issues such as erosion, algae blooms, Canadian Geese infestations, and high maintenance costs
There will be speakers for a variety of topics. Refreshments will be served. All of the information for the event, as well as the registration form can be found at

Free Workshop on Pond Shoreline Enhancement
Saturday, June, 13, 2015, 9 a.m.
Ridgefield Subdivision in Fishers
From HW 37 go east on 131st St. and turn right on Promise Road. Make immediate right onto Alamosa Drive
Pre-registration is appreciated by contacting
Dan McCord at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 317-997-2296 or Claire Lane at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 317-773-2181.


This free workshop will cover how shoreline vegetation and native plants can help decrease or eliminate these concerns.  An installation demonstration will be given by Hoosier Aquatic Management and Dan McCord, a resident of Ridgefield Subdivision will guide attendees through the process his neighbored undertook to improve their common areas and ponds. He will discuss challenges and management as well as the significant maintenance cost reductions Ridgefield has seen from their investment in their ponds.  Attendees will have the opportunity to view the established plantings at Ridgefield to get a better vision of what is possible in their communities.

Claire Lane of the Hamilton County Soil and Water Conservation District will discuss free assistance that is available to interested individuals and communities as well as financial assistance options to get projects started.

The Hamilton County Soil and Water Conservation District is partnering with the Hamilton County Urban Conservation Association, Hoosier Aquatic Management, and the Indiana Native Plant and Wildflower Society to host a “Shoreline Enhancement Workshop” at Ridgefield Subdivision in Fishers.

More information is available online at




Free Pond Water Quality Testing for your Neighborhood

The SWCD is undertaking a study to better understand the water quality in Hamilton County detention ponds.  A no obligation inspection will be offered including a review of pond management, physical structure, and laboratory water quality testing.  A free report will be provided to the pond owner/manager at no charge. If you or your HOA would like to be considered for this free program, contact the SWCD at 317-773-2181 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

More information is available online at



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