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Project Drawdown


6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Social Studies, Biology, Civics, Career Skills

Resource Types

  • Videos, 7 minutes, 9 seconds, CC, Subtitles
  • Activity - Classroom

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - Northeast, Pennsylvania

Tom Mulholland: Reviving the Land Through Community Power

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  • This short documentary features an interview with an individual from Pittsburgh that works to add more green spaces in urban areas and helps communities take action.
  • The video discusses the benefits of green spaces to the community and as carbon sinks.
  • Discussion questions, resources for further research, and recommendations on ways to take action to strengthen communities and combat climate change are also included.
Teaching Tips


  • This video provides a hopeful perspective on taking action to improve communities and combat climate change.
  • The discussion questions listed under the video are an excellent way to start a rich classroom dialogue or could serve as writing prompts.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should be familiar with the concept of a carbon sink.
  • Autotranslated subtitles for the video are available in a number of languages.


  • Consider having students research organizations in their area focused on environmental justice or conservation stewardship after the video to extend the lesson.
  • Discuss with students why having communities lead the way in determining how to restore vacant lots can be an effective way to approach land restoration.
  • Science classes can connect this resource to lessons about materials, heat, urban heat-island effects, and the health effects of no green spaces in urban areas.
  • Other resources highlighting the ways communities can work towards environmental justice are A Black-Owned Farm Fights Food Deserts in the Bronx and Indigenous Communities Are on the Front Lines of Climate Change.
Scientist Notes
The possibility of land reclamation as a successful, sustainable land management technique is explored in this film. It explains in great detail how unused land might be exploited as a carbon sink. The video contains no false assumptions about science. As a result, this resource is suggested for classroom use.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-3 Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Civics
      • D2.Civ.2.6-8 Explain specific roles played by citizens (such as voters, jurors, taxpayers, members of the armed forces, petitioners, protesters, and office-holders).
      • D2.Civ.10.6-8 Explain the relevance of personal interests and perspectives, civic virtues, and democratic principles when people address issues and problems in government and civil society.
    • Dimension 4: Taking Informed Action
      • D4.7.9-12 Assess options for individual and collective action to address local, regional, and global problems by engaging in self-reflection, strategy identification, and complex causal reasoning.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.6.2 Interpret information presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and explain how it contributes to a topic, text, or issue under study.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.9-10.1 Initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grades 9-10 topics, texts, and issues, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.
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