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You Visit Tour. Webb Lion Fountain. June 1 2017. Photo David B. Hollingsworth

ECOnference '13, from Environmental Sustainability to Sea Level Rise

An internationally renowned urban revitalization eco-entrepreneur delivered the keynote address at ECOnference '13, Old Dominion's annual engineering, energy and environment conference.

Majora Carter, a Peabody Award-winning broadcaster who is responsible for the creation and successful implementation of numerous green-infrastructure projects in the New York area, gave the lunchtime address at ODU's Ted Constant Convocation Center in keeping with a day focused on addressing key environmental issues. The event, co-sponsored by ODU Business Gateway and the Hampton Roads business journal Inside Business, brings together leaders in fields where engineering and the environment intersect, including leaders of green industries, the military, academia and interested citizens.

"We're proud to host the ECOnference at Old Dominion University every spring," said ODU President John R. Broderick, who welcomed participants to the daylong conference that started at 8 a.m. "The issues of environmental sustainability, economic development and alternative energy will be solved only if everyone is at the table. An event like the ECOnference is a perfect venue to spark meaningful debate."

ECOnference attracted nearly 400 participants, who came together to share ideas and information. Expert presenters included Tim Cole, chief sustainability officer for Virginia Beach City Public Schools; Christy Everett, director for Hampton Roads of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation; and Heather Wood, director of environmental affairs with the Virginia Port Authority.

Among the ODU faculty presenters were Sylvain Marsillac, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering and a national expert in solar energy research; Erika Marsillac, assistant professor of supply chain management who specializes in so-called "green" supply chain research; and Adrian Gheorghe, professor of engineering management and systems engineering.

Breakout sessions covered green energy, greenhouse gas reduction for cities, industry challenges for environmental compliance, and connecting green building construction to economic sustainability.

Members of Team Tidewater, the joint Old Dominion University/Hampton University team that is competing in the Department of Energy's 2013 Solar Decathlon, also appeared at an afternoon session, discussing this year's entry in the worldwide event, Canopy House.

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