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Traditional Ecological Knowledge & Sustainability in Cities

SUNY New Paltz Honors Thesis

Fall 2020

Advisor: Professor Lawrence McGlinn

This thesis is an exploration and analysis of the most efficient and appropriate ways policy makers, planners, and individuals can tap into the knowledge held by Indigenous Peoples around the world in order to improve urban environments to make them more sustainable and resilient to the effects of the climate crisis. Now more than ever, it is crucial to contextualize all human behaviors and practices with our history as a species. One of the best ways of doing this is lifting the voices of historically marginalized and silenced groups. By incorporating knowledge and wisdom that has been traditionally ignored into all individual and societal practices, the boundaries between the “natural” and “human” worlds can be redefined. By examining the potential that the wealth of knowledge held within Indigenous cosmologies, traditions, and practices has in regard to improving urban sustainability, a number of possibilities for integrating indigenous traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) into the modern sustainability movement are assessed. 

Carbon Offsets in New York State

GEO393: Climate Change and Society Professor McGlinn

6 December 2020

Research report on the carbon offsets market in New York State. Anthropogenic climate change is a dire threat to human kind, both to the present and future generations. In order to avoid the most severe consequences of the climate crisis as caused by global warming, there must be dramatic reductions in greenhouse gases emissions around the world before 2030 to avoid exceeding 1.5 degrees Celsius of global temperature rise. Carbon pricing and carbon offsetting are two proposed systems to incorporate the ecosystem services and the damage industry causes to the environment into the capitalist system of assigning value through currency.

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Cartography Final Project December 2019

Understanding the impacts of the wall on 

people and the environment.

Social Media

Using Arc GIS Pro and Adobe Photoshop, I created maps and graphics to accompany research in order to educate my audience on important environmental issues.

Data Analytics

Data Internship at

Greenpeace USA, 2020

By completing data analysis on a variety of marketing KPIs, created a number of dashboards to visualize the performance of various campaigns

over time.


Climate Change Casualties

Protest organized by the Climate Action Club at SUNY New Paltz, November 2017

After founding the Climate Action Club with a group of environmental activists at SUNY New Paltz in August 2017, we organized this event as our first direct action on campus. A total of eight body bags were laid out in front of one of the main academic buildings and five student activists took turns lying in them. The bags were accompanied by different faux obituaries for the imagined victims of real climate caused natural disasters. Behind the body bags, a large map of the Earth was hung, with red thread connecting all of the different parts of the world where climate caused events have resulted in massive losses of life and property. Additionally, students and others who interacted with the demonstration were asked to make a pledge to take action on the climate crisis, and record these pledges on a large poster behind the body bags. 

This protest attracted hundreds of student and other participants throughout the course of the day, we well as significant social media engagement and attention from the press.



Professor Lisa A. Phillips, SUNY New Paltz

Contributed research and helped shape ideas as Lisa A. Phillips began working on her book about parenting when your child falls in love. Helped find sources for the book and create social media presence for the project.



Profesora Ligia Aldana, SUNY New Paltz

Assisted Ligia Aldana in translating research papers for her anthology on the Montes de Maria region of Northern Columbia. Edited the grammar and formatting works being translated from Spanish to English to increase the precision and quality of the translation.



A passion project born out of the Bard C2C Sustainability Fellowship, aims to encourage people to start home vegetable gardens. This initiative addresses several sustainability issues including food insecurity, greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture, and connecting with nature.

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