Promise to Our Planet 2023

 · April 12, 2023

Acterra’s “Promise to Our Planet” benefit for climate action took place on March 23, 2023. The event was a virtual gathering that reviewed recent achievements over the past year and brought together a community that was dedicated to building solutions to the climate crisis. The theme this year was “Charting Progress, Celebrating Community.”

Watch the Promise to Our Planet 2023 event recording here.

Ertharin Cousin, Distinguished Fellow, Global Food and Agriculture at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, provided an initial welcome address, followed by networking in randomized small groups. The main event featured State Senator Josh Becker, California’s 13th District, who discussed California climate policy; youth poet D’mani Thomas, reading an original work; a tribute to the late Walt Hays, environmental champion and longtime friend of Acterra; and remarks by Violet Saena, founder of the organization Climate Resilient Communities, which, over the course of the past several years, has transitioned from Acterra program to Acterra’s Fiscally Sponsored Project to independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit status in March 2023. 

Four concurrent breakout sessions were offered on Acterra’s areas of work: Beneficial Electrification, Food and Climate Change, Education, and Advocacy. The guest speakers for these sessions were Tom Kabat, Katie Cantrell (Greener By Default), Kamille Lang (Office of Sustainability, County of San Mateo), and Juan Estrada (Green Foothills). 



Acterra presented “Champions of Promise” awards to Oscar Anderson and Kai Mirchandani (for People Plates Planet), Roxana Franco and Adriana Fernandez Arriaga (for Conservacion Cultura), Christine Luong (City of Palo Alto Sustainability Manager), and lead members of the San Mateo Climate Action Team (SMCAT). All of the awardees exemplified leadership in advancing climate action locally in their communities, many of them in volunteer capacities. This part of the evening was one of the most inspiring and memorable.

To address the urgency and complexity of climate change, communities must rally and work together. As a catalyst for education and empowerment, Acterra’s programs enable community members to take action on climate in impactful ways — including personal changes to their lifestyle or advocacy for broader policy solutions. These goals were outlined by Acterra’s staff in the fundraising portion, called Acterra’s Fund-A-Future, to benefit climate action. To conclude the evening, the audience heard from Dr. Jon Foley, Executive Director of Project Drawdown, on his thoughts on a road map for climate solutions that could be both timely and provide the greatest impact. 

If you missed any part of the event, you can watch the Promise to Our Planet 2023 event recording by clicking on the thumbnail below. Please stay tuned for Promise to Our Planet 2024! We can’t wait to see what progress the next year brings.


Acterra would like to acknowledge our event Sponsors:

Supporter Level: City of Hayward, City of Palo Alto, Katie & Jean-Louis Excoffier, Peter & Melanie Cross.

Benefactor Level: Peninsula Clean Energy; Silicon Valley Clean Energy; Office of Sustainability, County of San Mateo; Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian; RethinkWaste; Heising-Simons Foundation; Langan.

Community Level: Arkin Tilt Architects, Minerva Consulting.


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