These are some thoughtful reflections on the climate crisis, resilience, education and sustainability.

Welcome to the fourth edition of the R2:1 Newsletter. In it are some thoughtful reflections on the climate crisis, resilience, education and sustainability. We hope you find it useful. And we are always open to hearing from you. Do you have something to contribute? Just let us know.  Enjoy the newsletter.


01 - My first eco-fiction book
By Cheryl Bradbee, BPhil, MCS, MDiv, MLA, PhD
02 - Make a difference and go green
By Aleksandar Janicijevic, Dipl. Ing. Arch
03 - Sustainable Communities Design
By Oruba Alwan, B.ARCH. LEED AP®. OAA Architect
04 - UN Development Programme to increase
a sustainable blue economy

By Elaine Bradbee
05 - R2:1 Board Meeting and other news

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01 - My first eco-fiction book

By Cheryl Bradbee, BPhil, MCS, MDiv, MLA, PhD

I’ve been waiting for fiction that addresses climate change, adaptation and resilience that isn’t also some kind of apocalyptic doom scenario. As a professor who regularly teaches climate change to young adults, I want to be able to convey a real hope to them. I have found for my own personal emotional well-being I have to avoid media that offers no hope.  

I just finished the Light Pirate by Lily Brooks-Dalton (2022, Grand Central Publishing, NY). I was skeptical going in but the book hooked me early with the tale of a baby born during a hurricane in Florida. The story gives no dates so it is impossible to know when the it takes place aside from being a projected future. Whatever the decade, Florida is suffering from multiple disasters. People are leaving. Cities going bankrupt.


Wanda, the baby born of a storm and named for it, has a difficult and unconventional upbringing but as climate things escalate, she ends up living with a woman neighbour who has prepared for climate challenges for years. A prepper of sorts this woman approaches the whole rationally, knows adaptation is key, and has invested to be ready. While reading I sometimes had to take a step back due to the sense of impending doom. But in the end the book offers hope with Wanda and her partner reflecting back on the growth of a community in their old age. All through the story women are the adapters and the communicators of wisdom. The overall theme through it all is that we develop resilience through adaptation and learning from one’s context. As the context shifts, so too must we. 

In this sense it is a hopeful book that I know some of my students might enjoy. Yes, civilization as we know it, especially in Florida and other spots, has a strong possibility of being lost in the future. But people get on with survival and create something new and beautiful. Nature does the same thing.

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02 - Make a difference and go green

By Aleksandar Janicijevic, Dipl. Ing. Arch.


In the last couple of months I was somewhat preoccupied by Eco-Anxiety, reading numerous texts about this issue. I was a surprised to find out how some of my 6 year-old graddaughter’s activity books dealt with the climate crisis.


Make a Difference and Go Green”, one of the books in my granddaughter’s collection, starts with this statement: “This precious planet is home to us, and it is filled with natural habitats and oceans for animals and plants to live in, too. And yet our actions are damaging it every day. The effects of climate change, pollution, burning fossil fuels, and habitat loss are being felt across the globe. To help make a difference and protect our planet, we must learn as much as we can”. 


This concept is quite concerning. What information we are passing to the youngest generation? We made a mess but it is up to you to fix it?  What are we 
doing, I asked myself.


The following images from different book will give you an idea what I am talking about. These are statements, written in her own words as she internalizes the messages: The world needs less – GARBAGE; and can use more – PARKS;
I wish for more – FOOD!

…Imagine an invention that could help make the world a better place for everyone: “My invention: THE SUCKER [for garbage around us]. Superhero name: Daisy, My superpowers: Lighting. Evil forces to conquer: POLLUTERS


Here is just a selection of titles dedicated to young kids, some as young as 3:

Old Enough to Save the Planet, Loll Kirby

Thank You, Earth: A Love Letter To Our Planet, April Pulley Sayre

Polar Bear, Why Is Your World Melting? Robert E. Wells

How We Know What We Know About Our Changing Climate, 
L. Cherry and G. Braasch

Our House Is on Fire: Greta Thunberg’s Call to Save the Planet 
by J. Winter

What is Climate Change? by Gail Herman

A Hot Planet Needs Cool Kids by Julie Hall

Mission: Save the Planet by Sally Ride and Tam O’Shaunghnessy

No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference by Greta Thunberg


Could this be the cause for frustration for young kids from an early stage 
of life? Are we in this way communicating fear of a climate breakdown? My opinion is that it is important to encourage and educate the young generation to become change makers but, we have to be very careful about how we do it.


The principal emotion should be love—to build a better world—but grief goes with it. Most of the kids targeted with this messaging have lived half of their lives under Covid19 stress, then compounded with the fear of the Global Climate Crisis. To me this also sounds like “soft denial” for adults: let’s push away the issue of Climate Change. It is not that serious, our kids can handle it easily.


“Our ability to protect the well-being of the people we care about doesn’t only depend on us having tools that help us self-soothe on an increasingly chaotic planet. What’s needed is a healthy sense of injustice that, when combined with emotional regulation, helps people act on behalf of others and the environment. [p188 - Generation Dread]

Continue to the next article 

03 - Sustainable Communities Design
By Oruba Alwan, B.ARCH. LEED AP®. OAA Architect

Oruba Alwan reports that she is working with Humber College, Faculty of Applied Sciences and Technology (FAST) to put together a new course in Sustainable Communities Design. The course will cover principles of sustainable design as applied to engineering. This will include basic environmental science and climate change with its impact on the environment. Students will examine energy and resource management including renewable energy sources and technologies, water management, and waste reduction. From there they will investigate building design including all the technical details of making a building work well. Students will have a chance to research sustainable materials, life cycle assessments, sustainable infrastructure, and transportation. It concludes with professional behaviour and project development.   

The point of the course is to ensure that students are climate literate and understand the demands of their future work in a climate changed context. Put together by a group of professionals the course seeks to enhance the education students already get with better knowledge of climate change, sustainability, and best practices going forward.


Meanwhile Cheryl Bradbee continues to teach the Applied Ecology for Planners at Toronto Metropolitan University Planning Program. This is a first year, 2nd term course focused on taking climate science and applying it to urban planning. The course focuses on climate change adaptation and biodiversity as the two major ecological issues facing planners. During the term students role play as planners for cities all over Canada, examine the issues specific to that locale, investigate how the city is both responding and communicating its response, and then make recommendations for action.  

Climate literacy is going to be essential in most professions going forward. It’s time for post-secondary education in Canada to step up and do all it can to make sure students graduate with real tools and skills to address the changes they are facing.  

Do you teach in post-secondary education? Have a story about what you are teaching? Please share. It encourages all when we know that this kind of work is getting done.

Continue to the next article

04 - UN Development Programme to increase
a sustainable blue economy
By Elaine Bradbee

In September 2022, Cube Zanzibar, an entrepreneur-boosting platform in Zanzibar, received a grant from the United Nations Development Programme to identify and incubate innovative solutions to the lack of waste management on the islands and to increase a sustainable blue economy. 

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Therefore, Cube ran several rounds of competition during November and December to identify the best solutions to these problems to be incubated. Cube focused on women and university students in their quest to promote innovate solutions and entrepreneurs. There were 130 applications from across Tanzania, out of which 40 were shortlisted. They were given intensive training in entrepreneurship, including obtaining funding, and one-on-one mentoring. These participants then presented their ideas to a committee. Ten finalists were chosen and attended an intensive boot camp focused on sustainable development and included people from across Africa. They visited local projects that reduced plastic waste, promoted renewable energy sources, and improved water sustainable development, learned about the culture, and went on an ecosystem tour.

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The ten finalist presented their ideas to representatives of partner organizations. The winners were Bakari Mongopo from Beifa Dry Foods who won first place prize for its contribution towards addressing challenges related to prolonging seafood shelf life using solar technology. Arafa Hamad Bakari from Asili Fertilizers earned second place with her efforts aimed at providing organic fertilizers for the hospitality and agriculture sectors in Zanzibar. Third place went to Ghalib Khamis Machano from Refasha, for skincare products made of seaweed. These winners are now working with Cube to bring their ideas to fruition.

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06 - Upcoming R2:1 Board Meeting
and other news

We are looking for partners in research. R2:1 hopes to put together a coalition of people asking questions, specifically asking questions about how to better educate and communicate climate change and resilience issues. Do you have any burning questions? Let us know. We may be able to include them in a survey. Do you work with a particular age group and have thought about how to better engage them on these issues? Share with us so we can learn more.

We are planning our Board Meeting for the first week  of April. Everybody is welcome, please join us if you are interested.

And if you have a specific research project in mind, please let us know. We would be happy to help, perhaps share a grant or partner.

Resilience 2:1
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
We are a non-profit, volunteer driven organization incorporated federally. Members represent a diverse group of disciplines and interests, all focused on the issue of resilience for Canada through a changing climate.             Contact us or Unsubscribe from Newsletter

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