Science Café Cleveland presents


"Ecological Footprints - What's your shoe size?"


JULY 9, 2012




Sandra Albro and Geri Unger

Cleveland Botanical Garden




If everyone on the planet lived just like you do now, how many Earths would it take to provide each person with supplies like food, water, and gas? (Hint: More than one!) People and businesses can measure their environmental impact in terms of the amount of land that is farmed and drilled each year to support them. This measurement is known as an ecological footprint. Knowing the pieces that make up your own ecological footprint can help you make healthier decisions, not only for the environment but also for your bank account.


Sandra Albro and Geri Unger will talk quickly about how Cleveland Botanical Garden used its own ecological footprint calculation to save money. They then will introduce some free online tools that can tell you the size and structure of your own footprint. Using these tools, they will compare example footprints from an environmental enthusiast, a Hollywood star, a Science Cafe attendee, and a hunter-gatherer. Lastly, they will talk about how ecological shoe sizes are changing across the globe and what that means for all of us.




Sandra Albro and Geri Unger conduct research at Cleveland Botanical Garden in ways to reuse vacant urban land. They helped the garden calculate its ecological footprint in 2011, and they dabble in finding ways to reduce the size of Clevelanders' footprints through making use of local products and resources. Sandra and Geri both have backgrounds in ecology, the study of how organisms relate to one another and their environments. Sandra and Geri each use about 18 acres of land per year.




Global Footprint Network (GFN):


GFN's Ecological Calculator:


Center for Sustainable Economy's Calculator:





WHERE: The Market Garden Brewery

(Located at 1947 West 25th Street next to the West Side Market, Cleveland, Ohio)


WHEN: July 9, 2012

Drinks at 6:30 pm, discussion starts around 7:00 pm


WHO: Sponsored by Case Western Reserve University chapter of Sigma Xi, WCPN

ideastream, and the Market Garden Brewery



Click here to download a pdf of the event flyer