Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Sustainability Committee notes 2/1/08

To keep everyone updated on what the Sustainability Committee is doing, here are the notes from last meeting. If you have anything you want brought up next meeting, just comment or send me an email lcrewspless@mica.edu

Committee on Sustainability

February 1, 2008

Meeting Notes

It was expressed that there is a need for obvious leadership from the highest levels of the campus Administration. A statement from the President on MICA’s commitment to sustainability and the reduction of greenhouse gases would carry a lot of weight with the students. Students are being asked to make significant contributions and sacrifices, but they are not seeing a high level of commitment from the faculty and staff. It appears as though MICA Administrators are not taking these efforts seriously.

Currently it appears that there is no recycling effort at campus events. Is there something that can be done about this?

The idea of a Ride Share program was introduced. This will be looked into with Human Resources. This would need to be an opt-in program, with a meeting date set up for those to attend if they’re interested. It would be up to the individuals to participate and make their own ride sharing arrangements.

Trash Talk is taking inventory of cans for recycling and landfill trash in all the buildings, will put cans together where necessary, and will place stickers on all cans. Additional cans may be needed. Cans are needed in all studio areas; currently only a very few exist and there is no recycling effort. Recycling maps will be placed in all buildings to make it easier for everyone to find out exactly where they can take their waste.

In order to get students to switch to compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), we may bring in a vendor to sell to students at the beginning of each semester. This would require a 10% fee from the vendor on all sales (as per MICA’s standard vendor agreement). There is also the possibility of Trash Talk buying directly from the vendor and selling CFLs at their Student Involvement Fair on February 22. A special deal could be arranged for students to get one free bulb when they buy one and bring in an incandescent bulb.

There is a solar decathlon in Washington, DC every two years. Is this something in which MICA could partner with JHU? For more information, go to http://www.solardecathlon.org/.

Rana Silver has offered to look into the possibility of partnering with other organizations for sponsorships (Whole Foods, etc).

Michael Hindle is looking into research and implementation of renewable energy and solar panels.

Daphne Porter is looking into the possibility of being able to shut down all computers at the end of the day. If this is reasonable, we will include this in the next community update email.

As part of an ongoing effort to get the word out to the MICA community, the Committee has come up with the following ideas:

Sustainability web site – needs to be updated and have more of a “fun and energetic” feel, with interactive links. Nicole Evanshaw will check with the Communications office to see how much flexibility in design exists, and if Trash Talk can share in design and maintaining content.
Installations – large or small scale installations across campus, which would incorporate the web site url (to drive traffic).
Bulletin boards – placed in key locations (Java Corner, CafĂ© Doris, and the Meyerhoff Dining Room) could have one side chalk board, and one side posters that will change periodically, and will include the web site url.
Email – a new email will be sent to update all MICA students, staff and faculty on the recent sustainability initiatives.
Trash collection – to visually illustrate the need for recycling, students may collect trash for one day (maybe in the Fox Building, maybe in Cohen Plaza) and then sort for recycling.

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