Photo credit: Powell Gardens
Climate Change poses an existential threat to the flora and ecosystems public gardens showcase and conserve. The American Public Gardens Association is committed to supporting member gardens as leaders in sustainability and global climate change awareness. As conservation leaders, public gardens identify and mitigate critical threats to ecosystems, particularly as it pertains to biodiversity.
Climate and Education Resources
The American Public Gardens Association and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) partnership provides public garden professionals with opportunities for exchange on the impacts of climate variability and change, while utilizing the most current climate data.
Public Gardens have unique credibility as trusted science and conservation educators. As important centers of conservation as well as formal and informal science education, public gardens serve as a major source of climate change and sustainability information for visitors and students of all ages and skill levels.
Find NOAA tools and curriculum to address the challenges of communicating climate change to diverse audiences in the Library & Media Center.
Establishing Sector-wide Sustainability Standards
The Public Gardens Sustainability Index is an industry-specific tool with a structure that encompasses Environmental, Social, and Financial Sustainability best practices for gardens of all sizes, financial capacities, community demographics, and geographies.
“I have purposely presented the land ethic as a product of social evolution because nothing so important as an ethic is ever ‘written’… It evolves in the minds of a thinking community.”
~Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac
“When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.”
The Association would like to echo the sentiments of these two great environmental pioneers in saying, this Sustainability Index would not be possible without the many contributions from public garden professionals, individuals in academia, and individuals in the government and private sectors, all of whom are experts in their fields. Contributors to this index are part of an extensive interview and peer review process representing different gardens and perspectives across North America and beyond. Every effort has been made to engage field-wide specialists from diverse communities in vetting the “living documents” that make up this holistic and multi-faceted set of resources.
The Public Gardens Sustainability Index represents a thoughtful community of many individuals. The 12 Sustainability Index Attributes are interconnected; one cannot “tug” on a single attribute without finding it attached to the rest. The same can be said about our membership, the path to achieving more sustainable behaviors and practices is not to address social, economic, and environmental concerns on an individual basis. We would like to single out those individuals who contributed to this index by generously giving their time.
Our sincerest thank you!
Allie Byrd Skaer
Robert E. Mottern
Mary Kathryn Poole
Jennifer Schwarz Ballard
Sharon Van Loon