‘Tis the Season to Be Sustainable!
“Tis the season to be jolly”… and sustainable! The holiday season has arrived, we are all busy decking our halls and finding the perfect gifts! Unfortunately, some of these precious moments are unsustainable and harm the environment. Sadly, over six million tons of trash is sent to the landfills during the holidays! Luckily, there are solutions and the holiday season can be joyful for us and Mother Nature! Follow these tips to make the season festive, fun, and eco-friendly!
1. Gift with meaning! Pick one or two gifts that carry meaning rather than 4 or 5 cheap, superficial gifts! This brings more joy to your loved ones and reduces unnecessary consumption.
2. Shop local! Bowling Green has a thriving downtown- “For Keeps Gifts”, “Ben’s”, “Calico Sage &Thyme”, “Finders Records”, and “Eden Fashion Boutique” are just a few of the wonderful downtown shops with professional employees ready to help you pick out the perfect gift!
3. Make and give an Eco-Gift! Fill a reusable water bottle, hamper or even pots and pans with fun, eco-friendly products! Some great examples of eco-friendly gifts are homemade soaps, water bottles, reusable straws, solar powered chargers, bus tokens, and beeswax candles.
4. Experiences! Save yourself time and stress, just give experiences your loved ones will be sure to appreciate! Concerts, bus tickets, spring break hotels, and amusement park tickets are just a sample of the great experience-related gifts that you can give! By gifting experiences you reduce landfill waste and cut production emissions!
5. Use Re-Useable Dinnerware! Ditch the plastic utensils and styrofoam plates and pick up your re-usable dinnerware! Reusable dishware is better for the environment, healthier for you, and saves you money! A bonus is that re-usable dinnerware makes your table setting look more attractive and elegant!
Sibs and Kids "Paint with Mud"
“Is it real mud?!” squealed many excited children as they ran into the room for the Campus Sustainability Sibs and Kids “Paint with Mud” event on March 2nd. To answer their question, yes, it was real mud that had been dyed different colors to paint with! Over the first weekend of March close to 100 students, siblings, and parents stopped in to enjoy painting with this “earthy” activity. Those in attendance witnessed the creativity of all the participants, including “masterpieces” of abstract art, boats, pets, and nature.
If a room full of happy and creative “future Falcons” is not reason enough to sponsor this event then the benefits of mud play and soil education certainly made it all worthwhile. This “Paint with Mud” event provided BGSU sustainability educators with the perfect platform to create a dialogue around the importance of soil. The world population is growing and it is vital to keep soil healthy for food growth, proper water filtration, and ecosystem biodiversity. A healthy soil will filter water, sequester more carbon, and increase microorganism production. In addition, research shows that playing in mud is good for human health. It has been proven to stimulate exercise, idea formation, critical thinking, and fine motor skill development.
If you are interested in “Painting with Mud” or need other ideas for activities that are creative, encourage active participation, and are educational please contact the BGSU Office of Campus Sustainability and we will help guide you in the right direction!
This February BGSU will once again join in competition with other universities across the nation in “RecycleMania”. The goal of this national competition is to involve hundreds of universities nationwide and increase recycling rates and initiatives across campus. Each week the recycling rates from residence halls are measured and compared. Kreischer holds the “RecycleMania” championship title! This year, the contest is being coordinated by the National Wildlife Federation for the first time. As always, there will be an overall focus on waste reduction as well as recycling. If you are interested in becoming more involved with “RecycleMania” reach out to the BGSU Office of Campus Sustainability as we will be looking for volunteers! Happy Recycling!
Sustainability Month Success
Each year, universities dedicate the month of October to sustainable efforts. This past October, BGSU hosted a successful Sustainability Month which comprised of ten sustainability-related events! Among the many successful events was a tree planting, the Campus ReStore, Wind Farm Tour, Falcons After Dark, and The Business Case for Sustainability.
The tree planting event kicked off the month which was well attended by the Greek community. Those who attended planted three Autumn Blaze Maples near the new renovated outdoor basketball courts. These trees will absorb three tons of carbon dioxide by the time they reach 40 years old; while also producing over fifteen tons of oxygen.
Next, the ReStore opened its doors for about 150 faculty, staff, and students. This crowd of people was a pleasant surprise as the store was practically emptied! We gave away office supplies, clothing, and festive decorations that might have otherwise been thrown away. This event was a huge success for the university’s waste diversion efforts.
The office hosted a wind farm tour at the American Municipal Power-Ohio Green Mountain Energy Wind Farm later on in the month. We took a group of students, faculty, and staff to the site to learn about how the wind turbines work and the benefits of this sustainable source of energy. The group was led by Beth Parker, BGSU alumnus and Environmental Program Coordinator for the Wood County Solid Waste District. This was an amazing way to learn hands-on and expose BGSU personnel to sustainable practices!
The Falcons After Dark event was hosted in collaboration with University Activities Organization and the Office of Campus Activities. The event included pumpkin carving and painting with sustainability crafts, including making all-natural laundry soap and reusable tote bags. Also, we had composting stations for pumpkin waste set up to reduce the waste of the event too. This was a success in that about 200 people came to the event and over 150 people took part in the sustainable crafts.
The final event to cap off Sustainability Month was a presentation from Dr. Bruce Meyer, Associate V.P. for Design and Construction and Adjunct Faculty for the BGSU Schmidthorst College of Business Administration, entitled “The Case for Sustainability: BGSU Business”. He outlined how sustainability is incorporated into business practices and the benefits of doing so. In addition, he spoke of how BGSU has integrated sustainability into its own operations in recent years. This event attracted a number of business students and faculty.
In the spring semester look for more informative, educational, and engaging activities including Earth Week 2019 in April.
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Updated: 01/19/2023 09:33AM