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Traditional Ecological Knowledge at the 2015 Bioneers Conference

It's almost here! The 26th Annual National Bioneers Conference will take place in San Rafael, CA from October 16-18. The three day gathering will bring attendees together and provide them the opportunity to connect with change-makers, leaders, and community activists for emerging conversations about practical, visionary solutions for the world’s urgent environmental & social challenges.

The conference will feature speakers, performers, workshops, and discussions covering topics from climate mitigation, to indigenous knowledge, to restorative justice, and much more. The Bioneers conference is structured similarly to our EcoFarm conference, with all-day intensive pre-conference workshops taking place the day preceding regular conference activities.

One unique pre-conference session that Bioneers is hosting is a Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) demonstration and workshop entitled Acorns, Elderberries and Pine Nuts: How to Keep Our Cultural Landscapes Healthy. Traditional Ecological Knowledge can be often overlooked when addressing the environmental crises we face today, but Western Science alone isn’t sufficient for solving these problems either. The two must come together, and operate side by side and in concert if we want to effect change.

The best part of an all-day pre-conference, in our opinion, is the opportunity to get “down and dirty” in the subject matter. This intensive session will be a hands-on experience, exploring the knowledge, sciences, and practices of California Native peoples who are working to protect and restore their eco-cultural heritage. Environmental stakeholders from all different backgrounds, including conservationists, scientist, NGOs, and governmental organizations, can benefit from these teachings.

Often the key to a revolutionary breakthrough is simply in seeing things from a different perspective, and this session aims to help attendees refine their understanding of ecosystems and their land management systems through teaching TEK and indigenous stewardship ethics. Hosts and speakers will include Cara Romero (Chemehuevi), Director of Bioneers’ Indigenous Knowledge Program; Tiffany Adams (Miwok/Maidu/ Chemehuevi); Leah Mata (Northern Chumash); and Edward Willie (Pomo/Walkiki/Wintu).

The 26th Annual National Bioneers Conference is just around the corner. Visit for the full schedule and registration. Bioneers has generously offered members of the EcoFarm community $75 off of 3-day conference passes with the discount code: ECOFARM15, as well as $25 off of 1-day passes with the discount code:ECOFARM1DAY. Register here:, and we’ll see you there!