Half-Earth Day 2019

Save the Date:
October 7, 2019
University of California, Berkeley

Half-Earth Day brings together people from around the world and across disciplines to share their unique perspective and thought leadership on how we can successfully ensure the health of our planet for future generations.

Inspired by renowned biologist and naturalist Edward O. Wilson, Half-Earth is a call to conserve half the Earth’s land and sea in order to provide sufficient habitat to safeguard the bulk of biodiversity, including ourselves.

Half-Earth Day is an annual celebration and opportunity for scientists, conservationists, community representatives, decision-makers, and educators to share their progress towards biodiversity conservation and inspire fresh energy and engagement.

Join us for an exciting day of programming at the University of California, Berkeley.

Check back for further details.
Last updated: August 23, 2019


Take a look back at Half-Earth Day 2018.

Half-Earth Day Program Highlights

Half-Earth: How to Save the Natural World

7:00-9:00 pm
Zellerbach Hall

Featuring the Horace M. Albright Lecture in Conservation and the James M. and Cathleen D. Stone Foundation Distinguished Lectureship in Biodiversity, with biologist and naturalist Edward O. Wilson, award-winning actress and environmental advocate Glenn Close, and other special guests.

Tickets available soon.

Questions? Contact Chris Heltne at (919) 219-2279, cheltne@eowilsonfoundation.org, or the UC Berkeley College of Natural Resources at (510) 642-4902, cnr@berkeley.edu.

Half-Earth: Pathways to a Half-Earth Future

9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Clark Kerr Campus
Building 10 and Conference Center

Convening a conversation about a Half-Earth future, the day will feature a diversity of lectures, panels and workshops, including parallel educator & citizen science, science & technology, conservation & communities, and business & sustainability tracks.

Tickets available soon.

Questions? Contact Chris Heltne at (919) 219-2279, cheltne@eowilsonfoundation.org.

Half-Earth: Pathways to a Half-Earth Future

9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Clark Kerr Campus
Building 10 and Conference Center

Morning Sessions

9-9:50am – Opening Plenary

«« Getting To Half ««


10-10:50am – Breakout sessions

11-11:50am – Breakout sessions

12-12:50pm – Lunch – provided

Afternoon Sessions

1-1:50pm – Plenary Session

«« The Future of Conservation ««

José González, Founder and Emeritus President of Latino Outdoors and highly-regarded leader in conservation will lead a panel discussion with young rising leaders who reflect the changing demographic of the US, bringing new energy, enthusiasm and innovation to science and conservation. They will discuss issues of environmental justice, historic discrimination in parks and public lands as well as current trends in justice, equity, diversity and inclusion in the conservation movement. This is the future of conservation. With an introduction by Jonathan Jarvis, Executive Director, Institute for Parks, People and Biodiversity, University of California Berkeley and former Director of the US National Park Service.

2-2:50pm – Breakout sessions

3-3:50pm – Breakout sessions

  • « Environmental Literacy and Envisioning Half-Earth in Schools and Communities

    There’s a growing sense of urgency regarding awareness and education concerning our environment and natural heritage. Understanding key environmental principles and concepts is foundational to building consensus and taking action. Environmental topics in education are interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary, incorporating themes, ideas, and content in ecology, literacy, geography, social studies, conservation biology, civics, earth science, and history to name a few. California is a leader in the arena of environmental education. The newly launched CA Environmental Principles and Concepts framework will be discussed in the context of its broader meaning for education in the state and nationally. Important aspects of implementation and impact will be discussed including issues of diversity in community contexts.

    Invited Moderator:
    Karen Cowe, Chief Executive Officer, Ten Strands

    Invited Panelist:
    Amity Sandage, Environmental Literacy Coordinator at Santa Cruz County Office of Education
    Craig Strang, Director for Learning and Teaching, Lawrence Hall of Science

  • « Biodiversity Research, Zoos & Parks

    Building a National Park System in China

    President Xi Jinping has called for China to have a fully developed national park system in China by 2030 and has designated 10 pilot national parks to lead the effort. With funding from the Paulson Institute, Executive Director of the UC Berkeley Institute for Parks, People and Biodiversity Jon Jarvis has been leading the team effort to evaluate their pilot parks, train their leadership and develop a model that ensures sustainability and conservation and science are the top priorities. Jon Jarvis and Thea Yang will present their findings and recommendations from a recent trip to evaluate Sanjiangyuan National Park Pilot, an area of over 30 million acres on the Tibetan Plateau.

    Jon Jarvis, Executive Director, Institute for Parks, People & Biodiversity, UC Berkeley

    Modern Zoos and Aquariums are Conservation Organizations

    The 236 accredited members of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums are transforming the very conception of a modern zoological institution. No longer simply curiosities or menageries, modern aquariums and zoos are purposeful conservation organizations, powered by engaging and inspiring attractions. At a time when human populations are increasingly urban, indoors, and nature-disconnected, zoos and aquariums offer accessible opportunities for connection to nature, through animals, and in settings where visitors feel and emerge with a sense of empathy, and a knowledge of how they can act on it. At a time when wild nature is diminishing in the face of human expansion, aquariums and zoos are expanding investment in conservation, and collectively, now rank among the world’s largest conservation funders. And at a time when confidence in institutions, public and private, is at all-time lows, public trust in aquariums and zoos is robust and strengthening. In 2006, author Stephen Meyer told us that “the race to save the composition, structure, and organization of biodiversity as it exists today – is over, and we have lost.” Whether we have lost is yet an open question; but we are losing, and losing badly. We must find new ways to engage and inspire people, and modern aquariums and zoos are ready and able.

    Dan Ashe, President & CEO, Association of Zoos & Aquariums

  • « Business, Sustainability and Conservation

  • « Global and Regional Conservation Priorities in Oceans and on Land - cont.

4-4:50pm – Closing Plenary

«« Nature, Science and the Humanities:
We all have a role in Half-Earth ««

“The Importance of Science and the Humanities” will begin with a short presentation by Island Press President Dennis Miller celebrating the 25th anniversary re-release of E.O. Wilson’s autobiography “Naturalist,” and featuring a sneak peak of a graphic adaptation to be released in early 2020. Following this glimpse into his life and inspirational thinking, E.O. Wilson will take the stage, and Esri Co-founder and President Jack Dangermond will moderate a discussion about the importance of a consilience between science and the humanities to a Half-Earth future, and the important role we all play in achieving the goal of Half-Earth.

Half-Earth Day is Co-hosted By

Half-Earth Day Sponsors

Support for Half-Earth Day provided by E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation partner Burt’s Bees.

Questions about Half-Earth Day? Contact Chris Heltne at (919) 219-2279, cheltne@eowilsonfoundation.org, or the UC Berkeley College of Natural Resources at (510) 642-4902, cnr@berkeley.edu.