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*SUSPENDED* 1.5 Celsius

Friday, April 17 @ 5:00 pm7:00 pm

*SUSPENDED* For the safety of our community, the Athenæum has suspended all public programs through June. The library is developing virtual offerings and will send out any updates via our weekly enews. Please click here for updates on the library’s response to coronavirus.


Time is running out. We have less than a decade to act in order to ensure we have a safe and sustainable planet capable of supporting our families, friends and the world into the future. Rather than being despondent, we can make meaningful contributions to arrest climate change and support future generations in leading healthy lives. Panelists will share opportunities for acting as individuals, families, and organizations to improve economic, environmental, and social well-being in communities in Rhode Island. The panel will consist of Barnaby Evans, one of the co-founders of the Providence Resilience Partnership, and Richard Sellers, waste-to-energy expert and former Director of the Renewable Energy Program at the International Energy Agency.

The library was saddened to hear of the recent passing of Athenæum member and friend Deborah Dunning, who inspired this event and was its moderator. Registered attendees will be notified of any changes to the program as soon as possible.


Barnaby Evans studied environmental science at Brown University and single handedly started recycling there in 1973. Barnaby has worked on a series of transformative projects focused on revisioning and reframing community wide debates and circumstances in the arts, urban affairs, and community engagement. He was the artist in residence at MIT’s Department of Urban Studies after receiving MIT’s prestigious Kevin Lynch award and continues to lecture there and elsewhere. Projects include restoration of an abandoned school building, art and garden projects, WaterFire’s project to transform the local self-perception and national notoriety of Providence, the renovation of the WaterFire Arts Center, and the Woonasquatucket River corridor. Barnaby is now focused on advancing ways for communities to constructively address the climate crisis.

Richard Sellers is a well-recognized leader in the fields of renewables and distributed energy, In the late 1980s, Rick served as the International Program Director for the Massachusetts Photovoltaic Center, developing and implementing information and outreach programs. He then became Deputy Director of the. Solar Energy Industries Association in Washington and was responsible for creating their “Strategic Plan for the 21st Century.” In 1999, Rick joined the staff of the International Energy Agency in Paris where he created a new renewable energy program designed to increase the rate of renewable , distributed and clean energy market growth. Rick was a Founder of the Center for Resource Solutions in San Francisco, an organization that currently serves as a lead certifier of energy efficiency solutions. Since 2005, Rick has been engaged as an entrepreneur in the solar and distributed energy field. He returned to Rhode Island five years ago where he is focused on supporting businesses in transitioning to the circular economy and supporting public enterprises in transforming waste into fuel and new products.