Santa Barbara Permaculture Network presents

2024 Eco Hero Award Honoring Albert K. Bates

Biochar Pioneer/Global Ecovillage Network UN Delegate/Author/Permaculture Teacher & Designer
Saturday, February 24, 2024 at 6:30 PM
Lobero Theatre

About the Event

Santa Barbara Permaculture Network celebrates its fourth Annual Eco Hero Award, honoring Albert K. Bates, Environmental Lawyer, Author, Right Livelihood Award recipient, UN Global Ecovillage Delegate, and Biochar Pioneer.

A perennial good-natured optimist, but hard-core realist, Albert Bates has been an advocate for the earth and its challenged ecosystem and climate for over 40 years.

Starting young as a lawyer, he inadvertently found himself defending an aquifer in Tennessee, where some of the most dangerous pesticides imaginable were proposed to be dumped, with a case that went all the way to the Supreme Court.  He won.

While researching that case, he connected with Tennessee congressman Al Gore, and began a journey of learning about ecological issues, including the ramifications of a warming planet, soon to be popularly known as “Climate Change”.  Continuing his work as a public interest lawyer, he later helped communities with lawsuits against the Atomic Energy Commission, cases that also went to the Supreme Court.

Like many of his generation, he gravitated towards living in an intentional community, joining the Farm Ecovillage in Tennessee in the 1970’s.  As an active member, he and others formed Plenty-USA, an organization to help build water & energy systems in challenged communities around the world.  Serving in the Bronx, Plenty-USA provided ambulances and emergency medical teams in areas where these services were almost nonexistent, while also training community members in medical skills.  In 2005 when hurricane Katrina devasted New Orleans, Plenty-USA was one of the first NGO’s on the ground to help, feeding and providing medical care.  In 1980, Albert & other Plenty-USA board members at the Farm were awarded the second Right Livelihood Award, sometimes called the alternative Nobel Peace prize, for their numerous projects & work.

Albert Bates is the founder and president of Global Village Institute for Appropriate Technology, a nonprofit scientific research, development and demonstration organization, with projects on six continents.  He teaches numerous courses in permaculture, natural building, sustainable design, biochar and ecovillage design courses at the Farm Ecovillage and around the world, and is an active participant at the International Permaculture Convergences.

First attending a United Nations Conference at the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, Albert has been an ongoing delegate to the United Nations Climate Conferences (COP), representing the Global Ecovillage Network (GEN) since 1994.

Recently, when Ukraine was invaded by Russia, he and others in the Global Ecovillage Network (GEN) formed a project called the Green Road, to give refugees temporary homes with 62 ecovillage sites in Ukraine, and 265 others close by in the European region.

Albert Bates is the author of more than 30 books including Climate in Crisis (forward by Al Gore); Cool Down; The Paris Agreement, the Best Chance We Have to Save the One Planet We’ve Got; The Biochar Solution-Carbon Farming & Climate Change;  and is the coauthor with Kathleen Draper of Burn: Igniting a New Carbon Drawdown Economy to End the Climate Crisis.  Albert will be one of the keynote speakers at the upcoming International Biochar Conference in Sacramento, CA in February 2024.

The Santa Barbara Permaculture Network Eco Hero Award honors those individuals who have committed themselves to work in service of the planet and its inhabitants for more than thirty years, with actual solutions and concrete ways forward that benefit many, often on a global scale, while demonstrating pathways forward for future generations.  Past recipients of the Santa Barbara Permaculture Network Eco Hero Award include John D. Liu; Paul Stamets & Louie Schwartzberg; and John & Nancy Jack Todd.   We are honored to have Albert Bates join us in person as the recipient for the 2024 Eco Hero Award.  A reception follows in the Lobero courtyard for all ticket holders.

Ticket Information

$106 - VIP Friends of Eco Hero
$26 - Section A
$14 - Section B

(Ticket prices include a per ticket Lobero Facility Fee; other fees may also apply.)

Reserved Seating
Seating Chart

Click to enlarge

Presented By

This event is presented by Santa Barbara Permaculture Network