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Project Drawdown


9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Social Studies, Engineering

Resource Type

  • Videos, 10 minutes, 47 seconds., CC, Subtitles

Regional Focus

Global, North America, United States, USA - Northeast, Pennsylvania

Erica Cochran Hameen: Climate Solutions & Equity Go Hand in Hand

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  • This video features an interview with Erica Cochran Hameen, a sustainable and equitable design researcher in Pittsburgh who explains the connections between climate action and equity.
  • Students will learn about ways to improve buildings to make them more sustainable and comfortable while addressing climate change and equity.
  • The video opens at the Phipps Conservatory, which houses 3 exemplary sustainable buildings.
Teaching Tips


  • This video proposes retrofitting as a way to tackle climate issues in today’s world. 
  • It explains the role of engineers and architects in ensuring sustainability and equity.
  • It provides discussion questions and links to additional information.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should understand the concept of inequity.


  • Teachers can use part 2:18-2:47 to describe retrofitting and its importance. 
  • This video can be used to teach the importance of a ‘can-do’ attitude. 
  • This resource could be used in a social studies class to start a conversation about the realities of inequity and steps that can be taken to bridge the gaps.
  • Teachers can use this as a hook to teach students about Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) guidelines.
  • Part 4:26 could be used in a history class to discuss the effects on Hurricane Katrina on New Orleans.
  • Energy poverty is described in this video and teachers can use it to explain the effect of the building environment on the well-being of inhabitants.
Scientist Notes
The resource emphasizes the link between environmental sustainability and equity. It offers a fundamental understanding of approaching significant environmental issues from an equity lens. It is advised to use this resource in the classroom.
  • Science
    • ETS1: Engineering Design
      • HS-ETS1-1. Analyze a major global challenge to specify qualitative and quantitative criteria and constraints for solutions that account for societal needs and wants.
  • English Language Arts
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • SL.11-12.3 Understand and evaluate a speaker’s point of view, reasoning, and use of evidence and rhetoric, assessing the stance, premises, links among ideas, word choice, points of emphasis, and tone used.
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