What Can We Take Away From Superstorm Sandy?

10/30/2012 § Leave a comment

By: Hayley Prihoda, Dunn’s Woods Restoration Project Intern

Yesterday, around 8pm, the eye of Hurricane Sandy touched-base over the Eastern Coast of the United States, devastating New Jersey and New Work and affecting at least a dozen other states. Reports claim that at least a few dozen lives have been lost to the storm and today over 7 million homes are left without power. Airline flights were canceled, state roadways were closed, and subways systems were closed from Washington D.C. to Boston: good thing too, as shocking pictures of the flooding of an underground station in New York City began to surface in the news. This storm was more powerful than the Northeast has seen in nearly a century.

While we repair the damage of the storm and keep all the families who have been affected in our thoughts, I think it is also important to take a moment to reflect on the severity of the storms of recent years and the measures that can be taken to protect ourselves against them. In his book, The Nature Principle, Richard Louv addresses the prevailing notion that there is a safe location, a haven to escape to when natural disasters seem to threaten our livelihood. Is there a place were we are not at nature’s will? Will the technological advances of man every be able to overcome the forces of nature? And, is this even the question we should be asking? « Read the rest of this entry »

Is Waste-to-Energy the Future?

10/30/2012 § 2 Comments

By Mark Milby, IUOS No Waste Program Coordinator

http://www.epa.gov/According to the EPA, the U.S.’s recycling rate (waste recycled or composted divided by total waste) was 34% in 2010. Whether or not you find this impressive depends on your perspective; personally, I find the recycling of 85 million tons of material reassuring, but I also roll my eyes since I happen to know that the majority of my trash is recyclable (and then another quarter is compostable).

For proof, take a look at how the EPA breaks down MSW (Municipal Solid Waste – what you and I put at the curb) waste by component (embedded pie chart)… over 80% of it is easily recycled or composted. Like Erik said last week, this stuff is not rocket science: I bring recyclables to the Downtown Bloomington Recycling Center every few weeks, and I have a simple trash can behind my house where I throw food scraps, grass, and leaves. I’ve never bought soil or fertilizer for my garden. 80% waste diversion, easy peasy.

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This Week in Sustainability 10.29.12

10/29/2012 § Leave a comment

This Week img

Upcoming events are listed in a weekly email bulletin and on our calendar. If you do not receive our weekly email and would like to, please email sustain@indiana.edu to subscribe.

Select ongoing events and opportunities are highlighted in our weekly email, while the full list of items are available on this weekly blog post. Instructions for submitting an item to either our calendar or blog are at the end of this post.

IUOS Website | Twitter | Facebook |  Calendar

Featured news, ongoing events, and opportunities: 

Donate During Class Registration (posted 10/29)
All IUB students will have the opportunity to donate $5 to the Sustainability Fund when they register for spring classes. Please encourage your organizations to complete the simple actions below to help publicize the fund. This effort goes a long way to advancing sustainability on campus. Donations to the fund help us support sustainable infrastructure on campus like the forthcoming motion- and sunlight-sensors to be installed in the stairway of Ballantine Hall.

Greenest Floor Challenge (posted 10/8)
Indiana University will hold its First Greenest Floor Challenge from October 22 to November 12 this year.  It is a competition that rewards the floor within each residence hall that “green certifies” the largest percentage of rooms.  The Challenge is meant to instill sustainability-driven values in students and teach them how to reduce their energy and water consumption.  For more information, click here.  To register your room, click here.

Indiana University’s 8th Annual Energy Challenge (posted 10/15)
The purpose of this challenge, which runs from October 22 to November 12, is to instill conservation habits in all participants.  This challenge rewards participants for making small changes that will have a big impact on the overall decrease in IU”s environmental impact.  To watch the promotional video click here.  To learn more about the Challenge or see past results, click here.

First Annual Sustainability Awards Ceremony (posted 10/29)
IU faculty, staff, students, alumni, and community members will be recognized as one of our sustainable leaders at the First Annual Sustainability Awards Ceremony!  Awards will be presented in four categories: Excellence in Research, Excellence in Teaching, Leadership Award, and Team Award. The Awards Ceremony will be on November 14 from 7-8 pm at the Neal-Marshall Black Culture’s Grand Hall.  For more information click here.

Fourth Annual Bluegrass Bioneers  Conference (posted 10/22)
This three day conference, from November 2 to November 4 will center around Bioneers: inovative and inspirational thinkers who use nature to solve environmental and social problems.  Numerous keynote speakers, breakout sessions, feature films, music, and others events will compromise this conference.  The Bluegrass Bioneers is still FREE and open to ALL.  Donations are accepted to help offset the costs at the conference.  For more information click here.   « Read the rest of this entry »

The Greenest Floor Challenge

10/23/2012 § Leave a comment

By: Haley Long, Sustainability and the First Year Experience Intern

The first day of the Greenest Floor Challenge has come and gone here at Indiana University Bloomington and during the first day of the competition we had over 50 students have registered their room to be “Green Certified” through the Green Room Certification Program!

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Three Steps to Zero Waste Events

10/22/2012 § 1 Comment

By Erik Schneider, Greening IU Athletics Intern

As more and more organizations and event planners take environmental impacts into account, many have realized that waste doesn’t have to be a fact of life. With some planning, an event can go from having only landfilled waste to having everything reused or recycled.

Anything from a 100,000 seat football game to your next potluck can aim for zero waste. In some cases having no waste at all may not be feasible, though it is possible to get very close, while in other cases, this goal can be reached. To do so, there are 3 steps to take:

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This Week in Sustainability 10.22.12

10/22/2012 § Leave a comment

This Week img

Upcoming events are listed in a weekly email bulletin and on our calendar. If you do not receive our weekly email and would like to, please email sustain@indiana.edu to subscribe.

Select ongoing events and opportunities are highlighted in our weekly email, while the full list of items are available on this weekly blog post. Instructions for submitting an item to either our calendar or blog are at the end of this post.

IUOS Website | Twitter | Facebook |  Calendar

Featured news, ongoing events, and opportunities: 

Last Day to Nominate! (posted 10/22)
NOMINATION DEADLINE is today, Monday, October 22, at 11:59 pm.  Recognize IU faculty, staff, students, alumni, and community members as one of our sustainable leaders at the First Annual Sustainability Awards Ceremony!  Awards will be presented in four categories: Excellence in Research, Excellence in Teaching, Leadership Award, and Team Award. The Awards Ceremony will be on November 14 from 7-8 pm at the Neal-Marshall Black Culture’s Grand Hall.  For more information click here.  To nominate a person or group for this award click here.

Greenest Floor Challenge (posted 10/8)
Indiana University will hold its First Greenest Floor Challenge from October 22 to November 12 this year.  It is a competition that rewards the floor within each residence hall that “green certifies” the largest percentage of rooms.  The Challenge is meant to instill sustainability-driven values in students and teach them how to reduce their energy and water consumption.  For more information, click here.  To register your room, click here.

Indiana University’s 8th Annual Energy Challenge (posted 10/15)
The purpose of this challenge, which runs from October 22 to November 12, is to instill conservation habits in all participants.  This challenge rewards participants for making small changes that will have a big impact on the overall decrease in IU”s environmental impact.  To watch the promotional video click here.  To learn more about the Challenge or see past results, click here.

Green Drinks Bloomington (posted 10/15)
Green Drinks Bloomington is a lively, informal social networking event for people from all walks of life who are interested in making a more sustainable world.  It is held the 4th Wednesday of every month from 5:30 – 7:30 pm at the Banquet Facility of the Upland Brewing Company. This month’s speaker Bill Brown will discuss conserving energy in his presentation “Negawatts, Negatons, Negagallons: Using Less, Thriving More”.  There’s a $5 suggested donation and some food will be provided. To receive a monthly reminder, email greendrinksbloomington@gmail.com.  To learn more about Green Drinks visit http://www.greendrinks.org.

Get involved with Dunn’s Woods Restoration Project (posted 9/10)
Are you interested in getting more involved on campus and learning about the history of IU, urban green space, native flowers, or biological diversity? If so, come out and volunteer with the Dunn’s Woods Restoration Project.  For more information and future volunteer dates click here or email hprihoda@indiana.edu .

« Read the rest of this entry »

This Week in Sustainability 10.15.12

10/15/2012 § Leave a comment

This Week img

Upcoming events are listed in a weekly email bulletin and on our calendar. If you do not receive our weekly email and would like to, please email sustain@indiana.edu to subscribe.

Select ongoing events and opportunities are highlighted in our weekly email, while the full list of items are available on this weekly blog post. Instructions for submitting an item to either our calendar or blog are at the end of this post.

IUOS Website | Twitter | Facebook |  Calendar

Featured news, ongoing events, and opportunities: 

1st Annual Sustainability Awards applications DEADLINE EXTENDED!  (posted 10/15)
The NOMINATION DEADLINE has been moved to Friday, October 19 at 11:59 pm.  Recognize IU faculty, staff, students, alumni, and community members as one of our sustainable leaders at the First Annual Sustainability Awards Ceremony!  Awards will be presented in four categories: Excellence in Research, Excellence in Teaching, Leadership Award, and Team Award. The Awards Ceremony will be on November 14 from 7-8 pm at the Neal-Marshall Black Culture’s Grand Hall.  For more information click here.  To nominate a person or group for this award click here.

Greenest Floor Challenge (posted 10/8)
Indiana University will hold its First Greenest Floor Challenge from October 22 to November 12 this year.  It is a competition that rewards the floor within each residence hall that “green certifies” the largest percentage of rooms.  The Challenge is meant to instill sustainability-driven values in students and teach them how to reduce their energy and water consumption.  For more information, click here.  To register your room, click here.

Indiana University’s 8th Annual Energy Challenge (posted 10/15)
The purpose of this challenge, which runs from October 22 to November 12, is to instill conservation habits in all participants.  This challenge rewards participants for making small changes that will have a big impact on the overall decrease in IU”s environmental impact.  To watch the promotional video click here.  To learn more about the Challenge or see past results, click here.

Get involved with Dunn’s Woods Restoration Project (posted 9/10)
Are you interested in getting more involved on campus and learning about the history of IU, urban green space, native flowers, or biological diversity? If so, come out and volunteer with the Dunn’s Woods Restoration Project.  For more information and future volunteer dates click here or email hprihoda@indiana.edu .

« Read the rest of this entry »

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