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Indoor classroom featuring how-to workshops.

Discovery Stage Schedule

1:00 - Civics 101
1:55 - Protecting Life: The Climate Solution
2:45 - "How to go solar in the 21st Century"
3:40 - Change Your Investments, Change Your World
How we can use the power of our choices as investors and consumers to drive positive change in the world.
4:40 - Keeping Water ON your property

Civics 101 Workshop

Now is an important time for Austin and for the planet. Whether it’s global climate change or local transportation problems, there are lots of issues to get involved with... but what if you don't know how? That's where Civics 101 comes in. Civics 101 is a new initiative from the Austin EcoNetwork designed to teach Austinites how to participate in and engage with local government. We'll teach you everything from how to figure out who your City Council member is, to the best ways to contact your elected officials. Even if you're a City Hall newbie, we'll teach you everything you need to know to make a difference right here in your local community.

"How to go solar in the 21st Century"

The solar power market has already moved greatly through its early development: from the isolated labs of researchers and inventors, the tinkering workshops of hobbyists, the reclusive sites of off-the-grid applications, the strident efforts of green activists, to the singular homes of early adopters, to wall street's long-term investors, and more recently, to the doorstep offering. In this ever-expanding industry, there continues to be new horizons, each bigger than the last. In this talk industry experts convened by Solar Austin will discuss how solar power solutions in the 21st century are "crossing the chasm" to mass adoption. What new ways of acquiring solar power are emerging? Where is the innovation? How do we make the process simpler? When will it show up on new construction? And what are the evolving roles and blind spots of Utilities, Installers, technology manufacturers, policy makers, bankers and the marketplace? Building off a similar talk at a recent Solar Austin speakers series, we'll take a tour of what's to come and answer audience questions about how to go solar effectively.

Change Your Investments, Change Your World


An international public speaker, trainer, marketing strategist and serial social entrepreneur focused on creating impactful movements that make the world a better place. A community servant and a global citizen focused on using the power of storytelling and technology to be a bridge for peace. Ruden is the CEO of Austin+SocialGood and LevelUp Institute.


Nominated as Entrepreneur of the Year 2014, Austin Under 40; nominated Change Maker of the year 2016, Austin Young Chamber; and winner of 50 on Fire for AustinInno 2016 in Social Impact.

Keeping Water ON your Property


From rainwater harvesting, to graywater reuse, to landscaping features like rain gardens and bioswales, come learn how to keep as much water as you can on your property.

  • Learn how to manage stormwater runoff on your property through low impact development techniques
  • Explore rain gardens, bioswales, permeable pavements, and rainwater harvesting
  • Find out about City of Austin's new drainage charge system and how to reduce it
  • Discover how green infrastructure can potentially reduce your landscape's water use
  • Learn about the City of Austin graywater rules and how you can implement a graywater reuse system on your property.

What's not to love about cutting your water bills, reducing your demand on our highland lakes water supply and still provide some needed moisture for your landscapes?

Protecting Life: The Climate Solution

"What is the #1, most impactful solution to climate change and the extinction crisis?" Green Tech is an imperative for sustainability, but relying on it alone to stop climate change is like quitting smoking to cure cancer. We must rapidly engage eco-systemic solutions if we are to win today's climate and extinction challenges. Protecting and restoring Earth's most biodiverse ecosystems is the most multi-faceted solution to these global environmental crises. It's also the most affordable. Chris' talk will layout the facts regarding this bold realization, connect attendees to the history of life and the significance of biodiverse ecosystems to us today, propose a systemic solution to climate change, update the audience on the urgency of this solution, and connect people to the most accessible actions.