Engage with the environment

BGSU is mobilizing the community to get involved with sustainability efforts and issues during April. A full slate of Earth Month events and activities has been planned to raise awareness about and combat the effects of global climate change.

Organized by the Office of Campus Sustainability and the Department of the Environment and Sustainability, all the events are free and open to the public.

In 2015, the University adopted its Climate Action Plan to help meet its goal of being a carbon-neutral institution by 2040 as part of the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment.

Students have been active participants in BGSU’s environmental efforts. Among them, the student-led Green Initiatives Fund provides a pool of money for projects that enhance sustainability at BGSU. In honor of Earth Month, the Environmental Service Club invites others to join its “Adopt-a-Highway Earth Month Edition” on April 16.

To learn more about the issues surrounding climate change, the community is invited to attend a guest lecture by Dr. Henry Pollack, a professor emeritus of geophysics at the University of Michigan. He will be presenting a blend of climate science and policy in a talk entitled "Good COP, Bad COP: The Paris Climate Accord," at 7 p.m. April 18 in the Bowen-Thompson Student Union Theater. Pollack will share his research on how to move forward with public policy even though there is scientific uncertainty.

A highlight of the month is always the annual Eco-Fair, on Earth Day, April 20. The fair runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Union Oval and features environmental organizations, groups and initiatives from all across the region.

Two films will highlight different aspects of environmentalism. “Trashed,” a disturbing documentary about how the Earth’s resources are consumed and wasted, will be shown at 7 p.m. April 14 in 108 Psychology Building. And audiences will be inspired by “Billions in Change,” a documentary about one man’s rise from poverty into wealth and his commitment to improving the environment in the developing world. The screening begins at 7 p.m. April 19 in the Union Theater.

More of the month’s events are hands-on. Earth Month kicks off on Friday (April 1) with the “Once Upon a Desk” office supply giveaway, where students, faculty and staff with their BGSU ID can choose from a wide array of new and gently used office supplies. For the kickoff, additional items such as BGSU spirit gear, art supplies and bulletin boards will be available. The giveaway is held on the second floor of the Kreischer Quad.

The Campus Waste Audit on April 9 will be a chance to get your hands dirty and see what the University community is throwing away and what could have been recycled or reused. It is estimated that the Bowen-Thompson Student Union produces from six to seven tons of waste each week. The information gathered from the audit will help guide decisions about how to reduce waste.

One way to safely reduce waste is to bring used electronic items to the free recycling drive, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. April 9 in the Ice Arena parking lot.  View a list of accepted items.

To learn more about a clean way Bowling Green is adding to its electric power, take a tour of the wind turbines at the Wood County Wind Farm. Rides leave from Lot 7 just outside the pub at the Union at 2:45 p.m. April 13.

The Ecology and Conservation Association welcomes participants to the Invasive Species Removal Project, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. April 16 at the University’s Steidman Woods south of Portage. Help remove garlic mustard, honeysuckle, loosestrife and other problem plants.

BGSU is also coordinating with the city for other community-wide events.