Omega Press Release

November 3, 2021

Omega Participates in COP26 Summit to Accelerate Climate Change Action Plans

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CEO, Robert “Skip” Backus Featured as Virtual Presenter & Panelist, with Delegates Onsite in Glasgow to Represent Omega’s Climate Initiative

RHINEBECK, NY– Following up on the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement, nearly 200 nations are joining forces with civil society, companies, and people on the frontline of climate change to inspire climate action and strengthen shared agreements. Among them, Omega Institute’s first-ever delegation is attending the COP26 summit in Glasgow, October 31–November 12, and will be joined virtually on November 8 by Omega’s chief executive officer, Robert “Skip” Backus, as a featured presenter and panelist on water conservation.

“We are at a critical moment when awareness and concern about climate change are building. These changes offer an opportunity to shift the larger societal perception and narrative of climate change from one of apathy, ambiguity, and avoidance to one of clarity, care, hope, possibility, and engagement,” Backus said. “We are proud to be participating in COP26, both in person and online, and to be part of this this historic moment and necessary dialog.”

Backus will participate in a panel discussion entitled, A Hidden Treasure: Groundwater as a Tool for Climate Adaptation and Resilience, and deliver a virtual presentation in the convention’s Water Pavilion, on the topic of managed aquifer recharge. Both will highlight Omega’s leading-edge water conservation process, which Backus began in 2009 when he founded the award-winning Omega Center for Sustainable Living (OCSL). To date, Omega’s closed loop hydrological system known as the Eco Machine™ has purified more than 60 million gallons of wastewater to recharge the aquifer.

“When you really step into understanding water, there is no separation between people and nature. Understanding and honoring interdependence is at the heart of Omega’s philosophy and curriculum,” Backus said.

Omega was recently accredited by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), after more than a decade of focused climate effort by the OCSL team. As part of Omega’s ongoing Climate Initiative, the OCSL has worked with many regional, national, and global partners in climate organizing, as well as a number of  collaborative projects that support widespread and effective climate education, training, public awareness, public participation, access to information, and international cooperation.

Omega’s on-site delegation will lend support to the planned efforts of two interconnected networksthe US ACE Coalition and ECOSthat work to bring greater collaboration to the coalition, and coordinate advocacy for a strong ACE work plan (one of the outcomes up for negotiation at COP26).

To learn more about Omega’s Climate Initiative, visit and follow on, and on Instagram and Twitter: @Omega_OCSL

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About Omega Center for Sustainable Living

Founded in 2009, the Omega Center for Sustainable Living (OCSL) originated as the first green building in America to achieve both LEED® Platinum and Living Building Challenge certification—the highest standards currently available in sustainable architecture. Located at the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies, in Rhinebeck, New York, the OCSL is an environmental leader, offering programs that teach the regenerative thinking and environmental practices modeled by the building.

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About Omega Institute for Holistic Studies
Founded in 1977, Omega Institute for Holistic Studies is the nation's most trusted source for wellness and personal growth. As a nonprofit organization, Omega offers diverse and innovative educational experiences that inspire an integrated approach to personal and social change. Located on 250 acres in the beautiful Hudson Valley, Omega welcomes people to its workshops, conferences, and retreats in Rhinebeck, New York, and online at