Omega Center for Sustainable Living | Conference

Drawdown Learn Conference

What Schools & Communities Can Do About Climate Change

- Rhinebeck, NY

We are no longer taking registrations for this workshop.

Join the Omega Center for Sustainable Living for this weekend conference to cultivate and strengthen partnerships in the effort to reverse global warming.

In order to reverse global warming, it’s time for everyone to get involved—to connect and partner, and to weave together disparate efforts into local, regional, and global solutions-oriented movements.

And what better way than by engaging with and supporting the young people who have the largest stake in our efforts?

Since the nonprofit, environmental organization Project Drawdown published Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming in 2017, schools, community groups, nonprofits, governments, businesses, and individuals have been galvanized by the solutions-based blueprint.

Join the Omega Center for Sustainable Living and many partner organizations for this weekend conference to cultivate and strengthen relationships; share information, resources, and curriculum ideas; learn with and from young leaders; get inspired about what’s possible; and develop the support needed to achieve Drawdown by or before 2050—the critical point when atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations peak and decrease each year after.

Through inspiring talks, resource sharing, event exhibitions, and breakout and unconference sessions, you:

  • Gain updates on Project Drawdown’s findings and goals
  • Explore other practical roadmaps that people have found useful in conjunction with Drawdown.
  • Nurture and support youth leadership
  • Help bring intersectionality more fully to the forefront of our efforts
  • Be part of an emboldened and growing network of early adopters who wish to do more through schools and community work
  • Consider adaptation strategies and how schools, communities, and businesses can support local government efforts
  • Begin or deepen partnerships, collaboration, and mutual support toward learning and implementing Drawdown solutions with your school community, municipality, and other potential partners in your district, city, or town

In 2018, along with the project Drawdown team, more than 200 participants representing dozens of schools and partner organizations gathered at Omega to learn together and incubate ideas.

We invite you to join this expanded gathering in 2019 to further amplify Drawdown solutions across several areas: community/cross-sector education, action, and organizing efforts; K-12 education; higher education, and through innovation, ideas, and technology.

Join fellow students, activists, educators, curriculum developers, organizations, librarians, parents, and local officials taking action to reverse global warming, including a growing number of young leaders demonstrating that age does not determine who belongs at the table.

DRAWDOWN™ and DRAWDOWN LEARN™ are trademarks of Project Drawdown and are used with permission.


Connect, learn, and help chart a path forward for solutions-based climate change education and action in your school or community.  

To view the detailed 2019 in-person breakout schedule descriptions and presenter bios for Sat, Oct 19, click HERE.

4:00 p.m.–7:00 p.m. Check In (Rooms available after 5:00 p.m.)
7:30 p.m.–9:30 p.m.

Conference Welcome with Laura Weiland

Ceremonial Open with Schaghticoke First Nations, Penobscot, Tlingit and Taino Peoples

Remarks by Omega by CEO Robert "Skip" Backus

Remarks by Naomi Hollard, Sunrise Movement

The Nexus of Climate, Gender Equality, and Women's Leadership with Katharine Wilkinson, Project Drawdown VP of Communications & Engagement

Healing and Transformation: A Conversation: Katharine Wilkinson and Sherri Mitchell

Panel: Women Advancing Climate Policy Solutions with Rhiana Gunn-Wright (Green New Deal policy lead), Jen Metzger (NY Senator), and Didi Barrett (NY Assemblywoman) moderated by Carla Goldstein (cofounder, Omega Women's Leadership Center)

9:00 a.m.–10:10 a.m.

Morning Full Group Session

From Anxiety to Action: Psychology for Climate Work with Renee Lertzman, PhD.

Overview & Updates on the Drawdown Research with Chad Frischmann, Project Drawdown Vice President and Research Director

10:30 a.m.–12:25 p.m.

Drawdown Learn Breakouts: Presentations, Workshops, and Strategy Sessions 

View Detailed Saturday Breakout Session Schedule and Presenter Bios

Breakout sessions will feature topics such as tools for emotionally intelligent climate action, unpacking the Green New Deal and the critical importance of equity, the role of education & engagement for the implementation of the Paris Agreement, the importance of biodiversity and nature-based solutions, libraries as critical partners, Drawdown research & mentorship, the transition to a 100% renewable energy future, innovative case studies in climate education, indigenous knowledge & worldview, youth leadership and climate action, public spectacle & theater for increased awareness and engagement, integrating Drawdown into school curricula, using design-thinking to engage students with Drawdown solutions, elevating the educator's role in climate justice using Drawdown & actionable research, and much more. 

12:25 p.m.–1:45 p.m. LUNCH
1:45p.m.–5:15 p.m.

Breakout Sessions Continued

5:30 p.m. Optional: Tour the Omega Center for Sustainable Living & Omega's EcoMachine -- the first Living Building Challenge and LEED Platnum certified building and a natural sewage reclamation facility that purifies gray and black water through the work of plants and microbiology. (see Breakout Schedule for other optional meet ups and sessions before dinner)
6:00 p.m.–7:30 p.m. DINNER
7:30 p.m. –9:30 p.m.

Drawdown Learn Expo and Celebration.  Meet and connect with other conference participants and presenters; display, encounter, & share innovative resources, curricula, student projects and ideas; book signings, & more!

If you would like to display or present something in the free event expo, please let us know by submitting this form.

9:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.

Unconference Sessions - Participant and Presenter led follow up sessions to formalize commitments and plan our next steps

Updates from the Drawdown Organization with Jonathan Foley, Project Drawdown Executive Director

From Local Action to a Global Movement: Our Work in Hawaii with Henk Rogers

Youth Leadership Panel with Alexandria Villaseñor, Xiye Bastida, Birch Kinsey, Naomi Hollard, and others

Conference Close with Schaghticoke First Nations and other indigenous partners

1:00 p.m. Check Out


The above schedule is subject to change as the event continues to develop.

The Children's Program is generally available during standard workshop hours only. Contact Omega registration at 877.944.2002 for details.

Dining Hall Hours (Meals begin with dinner on arrival day and end with lunch on departure day.):
Breakfast: 7:00 a.m.–8:45 a.m.
Lunch: Noon–2:00 p.m.
Dinner: 6:00 p.m.–7:15 p.m.

Daily Open Classes in meditation, yoga, tai chi, or movement (subject to availability):
7:00–8:00 a.m., 12:15–1:00 p.m., 5:30–6:15 p.m., 5:30–6:30 p.m.

Meet the Presenters

  • Katharine Wilkinson, PhD, serves as vice president of communication and engagement at Project...
  • Rhiana Gunn-Wright is the policy director for New Consensus and served as the policy lead for the...
  • Xiye Bastida is a teenage climate activist based in New York City and one of the lead organizers...
  • Alexandria Villaseñor is a 14-year-old climate justice activist based in New York City and...
  • Andrew Revkin is the founding director of the new Initiative on Communication and Sustainability...
  • Jonathan Foley, PhD, serves as executive director of Project Drawdown, a nonprofit organization...
  • Chad Frischmann is a co-author and the lead researcher of the New York Times best-seller Drawdown...
  • Sherri Mitchell, JD, is an indigenous rights activist, spiritual teacher, and transformational...
  • Renee Lertzman, PhD, is an internationally renowned thought leader and adviser who works with...
  • Henk Rogers is one of the world’s leading advocates and activists for reducing, and eventually...
  • After a dedicated career as a community activist, writer, and leader of non-profit organizations,...
  • New York State Senator Jen Metzger (42nd District) has been a leading voice in the state...
  • Felicia M. Davis coordinates sustainability for Clark Atlanta University and is a member of the...
  • Frank Niepold is the climate education coordinator at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric...
  • Niclas Svenningsen serves as manager for the Global Climate Action team in the United Nations...
  • Jen Kretser is the director of programs and the Youth Climate Initiative for The Wild Center, a...
  • Mark S. McCaffery is founder and co-focal point of the Climate Education, Communication, and...
  • Timothy Damon is founder and president of the Global Youth Development Institute (GYDI), an...
  • Jaimie P. Cloud is founder and president of the Cloud Institute and author of the Education for...
  • Sachem HawkStorm, hereditary sachem (chief) of the Schaghticoke People, is a fierce advocate for...
  • Mark Lowery serves as assistant director of the New York State Department of Environmental...
  • Peter Buckland serves as the academic programs manager at Penn State’s Sustainability Institute...
  • Senorpe Asem-Hiablie, PhD, is an assistant research professor for the Institutes of Energy and...
  • Haley Stauffer is a graduate assistant at Penn State University in the Agricultural and...
  • Laura Weiland is director of the Omega Center for Sustainable Living (OCSL), and creator of Omega...
  • Robert "Skip" Backus is the chief executive officer of Omega Institute. For more than 20 years,...
  • Beth Osnes, PhD, seeks to use theater as a tool for women and youth to author a new story towards...
  • Lynne Cherry is an author, illustrator, filmmaker, and environmental lecturer. ...
  • Jaysa Mellers is a 14-year old activist who worked to shut down Connecticut's last coal-fired...
  • Laura Diaz is an innovative educator from the San Francisco Bay Area and the proud daughter of...
  • David Jacob has spent many years in public education developing innovative curriculum design and...
  • Saffran Mihnar is an advocate for climate solutions focused on communication, campaigning, and...
  • Rebekkah Smith Aldrich, MS, is executive director of the Mid-Hudson Library System, a public...
  • Rebecca T. Miller is Editorial Director, Library Journal and School Library Journal. Born a twin...
  • Matthew Bollerman is the director of the Hauppauge Public Library. Bollerman previously was...
  • Geoff Kirkpatrick is the Director of Bethlehem Public Library in Delmar, NY.  He is a former...
  • Abby Ruskey is a climate learning and action specialist from Olympia, Washington. Her work seeks...
  • Cinnamon Bear, of the Karuk Tribe, is an educator and traditional medicine herbalist who works...
  • Greg Schundler's career chronicles a journey from energy infrastructure finance in New York City,...
  • Bahar Bouzarjomehri serves as the vice president of Olympia (Wa.) High School's Climate Action...
  • Kaylee Shen is the president of the Olympia High School Climate Action Club, based in Olympia,...
  • Heidi Kirk teaches Environmental Science at Olympia High School in Washington State and advises...
  • As the climate and communities coordinator for The Wild Center, Erin Griffin works to empower...
  • Dazzle Ekblad, MS, MPA, is a climate policy analyst in the Office of Climate Change at the New...
  • Mario Trigueros is accountable for the success of the educational programs at the Pachamama...
  • Sue Staropoli serves as a facilitator and leader in the Rochester Pachamama Alliance community,...
  • Rogér Knoren focuses on expanding the reach and impact of Pachamama Alliance Communities. He...
  • June Hament has been a volunteer trainer and facilitator with the Pachamama Alliance for the past...
  • Martin Levin has been a volunteer with the Pachamama Alliance for the past 14 years. He has led...
  • Naomi Hollard is a Franco-Caribbean organizer for the Sunrise Movement who has been based at...
  • As President of MUSE Global and MUSE School CA, Rebecca Amis fosters creativity, incites change,...
  • Morgan Shepard attended MUSE School for both elementary and high school, where she developed a...
  • Isabel “Scout” Pronto Breslin, a high school student in Rhinebeck NY, co-created Hudson Valley...
  • Kellianne Ticcony studies marine biology at Stony Brook University. At Rhinebeck (NY) high school...
  • Having spent extensive time in Africa developing and implementing entrepreneurship and...
  • Liz Zavodsky oversees program engagement, sponsorship, and corporate partnerships at the...
  • As a longtime fifth grade teacher at Chancellor Livingston Elementary in Rhinebeck, NY, Chantal...
  • Robin Shornstein has been the librarian at the Woodstock Day School for 23 years, teaching...

Tuition & Fees

We are no longer taking registrations for this workshop.

Title Price

Drawdown Learn Conference

Tier Name Tier Price

Standard Tuition

This is the price of your workshop. Choosing this price helps Omega continue to retain world-class teachers and sustain classroom facilities.


Tier 1 Donor-Supported

This is our partially subsidized price for those with temporary or minor financial need.


Tier 2 Donor-Supported

This is our fully subsidized price for those in need of deeper financial assistance.


Tuition covers your workshop costs and time spent in class with the faculty. Please see Stay With Us below for accommodation choices—which include meals and other amenities for those who wish to stay with us. Or see Commute for those who will not be staying on campus overnight.

Accommodations cover your room, all meals, and use of amenities and facilities—which includes optional classes, evening performances, sampler classes (during the week), the lake, walking trails, parking, and all other guest services. A list of local hotels and inns is available for those who wish to stay off-campus and commute (see Commute below).

TYPE Rate - 2 Nights


1 pre-assigned campsite. Bathhouse nearby. Bring your own tent and all appropriate camping gear. Stoves, campfires, and recreational vehicles are not allowed on campus.

$ 246.00

Tent Cabin Double

Shared Room With Shared Bath
You must register with a companion if you choose this type of accommodation.
2 twin beds. Wood-framed, screened walls with canvas roof. Bathhouse nearby. No heat. No air-conditioning. Please bring your own sheets or sleeping bag, blanket, towels, and pillows. You may rent sheets, blankets, towels, and pillows for a small fee. Register with a companion.

$ 292.00

Dorm Single

Private Room With Shared Bath
1 twin bed. Hall bath shared by 5-to-12 guests. Heat. Air-conditioning. Free Wi-Fi. Pillow and blanket provided. You may rent sheets and towels for a small fee, or bring your own. Dorms are generally single gender, but may be coed.

$ 398.00

Tent Cabin Single

Private Room With Shared Bath
2 twin beds. Wood-framed, screened walls with canvas roof. Bathhouse nearby. No heat. No air-conditioning. Please bring your own sheets or sleeping bag, blanket, towels, and pillows. You may rent sheets, blankets, towels, and pillows for a small fee. Reserve as a private room.

$ 376.00

B Double Cabin Room

Shared Room With Shared Bath
2 twin beds. Bath shared with adjoining room. Heat. Ceiling fan. No air-conditioning. Free Wi-Fi. Register with a companion, or a same gender roommate will be assigned to you.

$ 446.00

A Couples Cabin Room

Private Room With Private Bath
You must register with a companion if you choose this type of accommodation.
1 queen-size bed. Heat. Ceiling fan. No air-conditioning. Free Wi-Fi.

$ 510.00

A Double Cabin Room

Shared Room With Private Bath
2 double beds. Heat. Ceiling fan. No air-conditioning. Free Wi-Fi. Wheelchair-accessible rooms available. Register with a companion, or a same gender roommate will be assigned to you.

$ 548.00

A Double Deluxe

Shared Room With Private Bath
2 double beds. Heat. Air-conditioning. Free Wi-Fi. Wheelchair-accessible rooms available. Register with a companion, or a same gender roommate will be assigned to you.

$ 604.00

A Single Cabin Room

Private Room With Private Bath
1 queen-size bed. Heat. Ceiling fan. No air-conditioning. Free Wi-Fi.

$ 702.00

B Couples Cabin Room

Private Room With Shared Bath
You must register with a companion if you choose this type of accommodation.
1 queen bed. Bath shared with adjoining room. Heat. Air-conditioning. Free Wi-Fi. 

$ 436.00

B Single Cabin Room

Private Room With Shared Bath
1 queen bed. Bath shared with adjoining room. Heat. Air-conditioning. Free Wi-Fi. 

$ 628.00


2 Nights Commuter Fee

If you are a commuter not staying in Omega accommodations, this non optional fee covers Omegas overhead costs, all meals, and use of the facilities, which includes optional classes, evening performances, sampler classes (during the week), the lake, walking trails, parking, and all guest services. An off-campus referral list is available.

Rhinebeck Campus

Omega reserves the right to cancel a program at any time. If Omega cancels a program, you will receive a full refund.

Refunds are available (less a $55 processing fee) up to eight days before your program or stay.

Nonrefundable credit toward a future Omega program or stay (less a $55 processing fee) is available if you give notice between seven and one day(s) before your program or stay. Credit may be applied to any Omega program or stay for one year following date of issue.

No credit or refund is available if you cancel on the arrival day; if you do not show up; or if you leave an event early for any reason. No refund will be available if you attend a program and are dissatisfied with its presentation or content.

For more cancellation policies, see individual workshops or the more detailed Omega Cancellations & Refund Policies page.


Travel Insurance

Program Insurance is available through TravMark's A+ Program Protection Plans. Get a free quote today.

Continuing Education

Certificate of Attendance$25

Organizational Partners

Omega's Drawdown Learn Conference emerged as a collaboration between Omega Center for Sustainable Living (OCSL) and Project Drawdown.

Our 2019 organizing partners and stakeholders include the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Climate Program Office; Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network (CLEAN); The UNFCCC Education, Communication, & Outreach Stakeholder Community (ECOS); Drawdown Penn State (Drawdown Scholars Program); Center for Environmental Education at Putnam/Northern Westchester BOCES; SunCommon; Blue Planet Alliance; Wild Center; The Cloud Institute for Sustainability Education; International Association for the Advancement of Innovative Approaches to Global Challenges (IAAI, GloCha); American Sustainable Business Council; Schaghticoke First Nations and other indigenous partners; Global Youth Development Institute; Pachamama Alliance; Young Voices for the Planet; Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Green Fund; New York Library Association Sustainability Initiative; New Yorkers for Clean Power / Student Climate Coalition; Rhinebeck Science Foundation; Woodstock Day School; Woodstock Transition;;  Center for Getting Things Started (C4GTS); SAGEX; Youth Education, Communications, Outreach (YECO) of Thurston County, WA; Climate Change Working Group of Frederick County, Sustainable Warwick; ESS/OneThing Brussels;  Bard Office of Sustainability; Drawdown East End; and more.


2019 Live Stream & Satellite Sites

There will be various sessions throughout the 2019 Drawdown Learn Conference that will be available for free via the event live stream and on Facebook Live. 

Last year more than 50 Groups organized satellite sites, and we encourage anyone who cannot join us in person to organize a climate solutions event in their own community alongside us here in NY.

For an online viewing schedule including the conference live stream and media zone (Facebook Live) sessions, click HERE

To register for the free live stream and/or to become an event satellite site visit

Drawdown Learn Expo

Many educators, schools, student groups, parents, and others are doing innovative work when it comes to climate change education. 

Have you developed tools, curriculum, creative projects, events, or another approach that is working?  

If you are planning to attend this Drawdown Learn event and are interested in sharing information or a display on a particular project or approach that you think would be helpful for others, please fill out this submission form and we will follow up with you about creating a small display or area with information that people can browse and discuss with you during the event celebration on Saturday evening.  

Space is limited and will be allocated depending on how many people would like to bring materials, and how large their demonstration requirements are. Submit requests early to be considered for larger displays. 

Professional Development Credit

This program includes 15 hours of professional development credit.  

In addition to registering for the event at Omega, teachers wishing to receive CTLE can register with our partners at the PNW BOCES Office through MyLearningPlan (there is a $25 fee). Registering for credit does not automatically register you for admission to the event.  Space is limited, please register with Omega first to ensure you are able to get a ticket.

If you prefer to check in with your own district or school about receiving professional development credit through them, you may request a Certificate of Attendance from Omega for a $25 fee when you register, or call 877.944.2002.  This is not a continuing education certificate.

Questions? Contact us at

Support Drawdown Learn

We believe that the solutions presented at Drawdown Learn can reverse global warming. We also believe that sharing these solutions far and wide—to engage as many people as possible in embracing the solutions—is imperative.

You can help! Omega is a nonprofit and donations are vital in enabling us to support the participation of educators, curriculum developers, community organizations, and students by offering more scholarships to Drawdown Learn

When you register for Drawdown Learn, consider making an additional donation to support OCSL scholarships.
•    $75 provides all meals for one local participant.
•    $250 underwrites a trip for a local classroom to tour the OCSL and have lunch in our Dining Hall.
•    $1,000 covers a full Drawdown Learn scholarship, including tuition and housing.

Of course, any amount helps show your support. Simply choose a donation amount and select Omega Center for Sustainable Living when prompted during checkout.

Sponsorship opportunities are available for the Drawdown Learn 2019 live stream and in person event. To get your brand involved, contact

Visiting Omega

Discover More