Digital Portfolio: Ellen Sizer

May 8, 2017

Blog Postings:

W1: nothing was due

W2: Cronon “The Trouble with Wilderness” + Sullivan The Meadowlands

W3: Edward Abbey:”Desert Solitaire”

W4: Pascal Bruckner “The Fanaticism with Apocalypse”

W5: Coates “Nature: Western Attitudes Since Ancient Times”

W6: Coates: “Nature:Western Attitudes Since Ancient Times” P2

W7: Jonathan Foer: “Eating Animals” This is when I presented.

W8:Robbins and et al.: “Environment and Society”

W9: Wednesday March 15: No Meeting / Spring Break

W10: Wednesday March 22: Meet in Columbus at my haüs (7-8:30pm)

But I did a post: W10:Hodgkinson:” How to Be Idle: A Loafer’s Manifesto”

W11:Robbins et al.: “Environment & Society” (2ndhalf)

W12:Urbanik: “Placing Animals”

W13:Stoknes. “What We Think About When We Try Not To Think About Global Warming: Toward a New Psychology of Climate Action”

Current Events: (order is chronological)

W2: E-Waste Is Growing Rapidly in Asia

W3: Cowspiracy

W4: Why climate change is good news for wasps

W5: Underwater photographer of the year 2017 winners – in pictures
W6:Wind Power Sets New Record: Briefly Provides Majority of Electricity for 14-State Grid

W7: Got Almond Milk? Dairy Farms Protest Milk Label on Nondairy Drinks

W8: K-Cups will kill us!

W9: Wednesday March 15: No Meeting / Spring Break

W10: Wednesday March 22: Meet in Columbus at my haüs (7-8:30pm)

But I did a post:



W11:The U.S. Government Is Making It Legal To Shoot Hibernating Bear Families In Their Dens

W12: Russian Conservationists Launch Survey of Elusive Snow Leopard

W13:Climate Change Is A Major Threat To Us All, But Here’s Why You Might Not Care

Fun Links/Misc Links:

Nature Rx Part 1 this video is in conjunction with Week 3 post.

Local Food Sourced Salad Bar or Hyper Local Salad Bar Proposal

Electric Cars Aren’t As Green As You Think this video is in conjunction with Week11 post


Digital Course Portfolio

May 3, 2017

Post One- Introduction and Meadowlands

Post Two- Desert Solitaire

Post Three- Current Event (for Desert Solitaire Week)

Post Four- Fanaticism of the Apocalypse

Post 5- Nature (pt 1)

Post 6- Project Proposal

Post 7- Nature (pt 2)

Post 8- Environment and Society (pt 1)

Post 9- Environment and Society (pt 2)

Post 10- What we think about when we try not to think about global warming

Project Report

Wildlife Friendly Campus

Kylie Shaw

Making a College Campus More Habitable to Local Wildlife

College campuses are scattered across the country, owning a lot of land and there are significant pieces of these properties that aren’t being used or already green spaces.  These spaces are usually either made into gardens designed for aesthetics or left to grow without much litter clean up.  These areas could be used as natural wildlife habitats, with some minor changes or additions.

According to the guidelines for a wildlife friendly habitat set out by the National Wildlife Federation, these habitats should include three food sources , a water source, two places for cover, two places suitable for mating and breed, and two sustainable practices. These things are important for the native insect, bird, reptile, amphibian, and mammal populations and help grow the biodiversity for even small locations.  These locations are especially important to the migration butterfly and bird species who need plenty of food and water along the paths they take for their migration.  Also, examples of sustainable practices would be a reduction in the use of harmful chemicals and litter, which keeps these things from being taken in by the local plants and animals.

The location on the Ohio Wesleyan campus that I chose is surrounded by the Meek Aquatic Center, Selby Stadium’s parking lot, the field for throwing events for track and field, the rugby field, and a highway.  So, it’s a small space that’s constantly surrounded by human activity, but it’s a great place for small wildlife since it has a thick cover of trees and bushed. The main problem for this area is that there is a lot of litter.  This poses a choking or poisoning hazard to any animal that tries to eat any of it, but some litter can also leak harmful chemicals left over from the production process.

For my project I located all of the different things that fulfilled any of the requirements listed out by the National Wildlife Federation and also cleaned up the litter found in the area. 

The woods provides good cover and plenty of dead and fallen trees that are good for cover and raising young.  The throwing field next to the woods could be useful for some species’ mating displays, but, since it’s in use for most of the typical breeding, I don’t think it would usually get used for mating.  There is also a pond across the street that could sustain larger animals that can’t drink from the large puddles that are usually under the trees and bird houses lining the outer edge of the woods.  There are also bird feeders across the street at the science center.  There could be more native plants within the wooded area used as food for local animals, but for most of the semester the plants weren’t out and couldn’t be identified. I was able to pick up almost two full trash bags of litter, which I then separated into trash and recyclables and disposed of.

In the future, I think it would be helpful to know the plants that can be used as food for native animals as well as which are native and which are invasive species.  Also, the clean up process needs to be an ongoing thing, which could possibly be a responsibility that the university takes on.

Final Evaluation: Max Kerns

December 15, 2016

About Me

Discussion I led – The Fanaticism of the Apocalypse, Pascal Bruckner

Current Events Postings:

1. Colorado Towns Work to Preserve a Diminishing Resource: Darkness

2. Pressure on UK to sign climate deal

3. World’s watersheds lost 6 percent of their forests in 14 years

4. Climate Impacts: Melting Glaciers, Shifting Biomes and Dying Trees in US National Parks

5. Geoengineering in the sky with diamonds

6. Groundwater discharge to upper Colorado River Basin varies in response to drought

7. China makes headway in reversing desertification

8. REPORT: Oregon Lost 500,000 Acres to Deforestation Since 2000

Notes on Reading:

1. Meadowlands

2. Desert Solitaire

3. The Fanaticism of the Apocalypse – See above

4. Nature I

5. Nature II

6. Eating Animals

7. Environment and Society

8. Placing Animals – Missing Notes

9. Garbology

Project Related

1. Ideas

2. Proposal

3. Presentation

4. Project Report





Pacia Purcell: Course Portfolio

December 15, 2016

Notes for Reading

The Meadowlands

Desert Solitaire

The Fanaticism of the Apocalypse

Nature Part 1 (my presentation)

Nature Part 2

Eating Animals

Environment and Society

Placing Animals


Current Events

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Week 7

Week 11

Week 12

Week 13

Project Postings

Project Ideas

Project Proposal

Project Report


Amanda Apicella’s Course Portfolio

December 14, 2016

Discussion that I led – Desert Solitaire

Current Event:

Book Notes:


Digital Course Summary

December 14, 2016

So I made the mistake throughout the semester by combining both the book notes with the environmental article that I found, so here is one comprehensive list of posts from this semester:

Book Notes/Environmental Event

  • Introduction Post: https: //
  • Notes for Meadowlands:
  • Notes for Desert Solitaire:
  • Notes for The Fanaticism of the Apocalypse:
  • Notes for Nature Part 1:
  • Notes for Nature Part 2:
  • Notes for Eating Animals:
  • Notes for Environment and Society:
  • Notes for Garbology:



  • Proposal:
  • Final Report:

Project Report: Heating and Cooling on Campus

December 14, 2016

Contributors: Chris Pessell

Outline of Presentation:

  • What was the Purpose?
  • What are the problems with HVAC on campus?
  • Methods Used on OWU’s campus.
  • Methods being Implemented on other Campuses
  • Approaches for Improving HVAC on Campus
    • Administrative
    • Students



The purpose of this project was to study the current heating and cooling practices on campus to see how efficient and environmentally friendly they are. Having heated buildings on campus is an expected amenity on college campuses these days. I can remember when I was taking campus tours and there was almost always a question of whether the dorms had air conditioning and heating. For buildings with relatively new buildings, there usually is some form of efficient heating and cooling systems. However, for the majority of college campuses that have old buildings, the answer is either no or yes, but the system is archaic. OWU’s buildings are the latter. Most buildings were built-in the 1800’s and have large, inefficient systems. Seeing as OWU is currently in the process of building new buildings or working on replacing a dorm in the future, now is the perfect time to review efficient and environmentally sustainable heating and cooling systems in new buildings.

Methods of Heating and Cooling

The first question I asked was, what systems do OWU buildings have now? I sat down and interviewed two staff members, Peter Schantz and Jay Scheffel from buildings and grounds to answer this question. For most of the older buildings, Slocum being their primary example, they have extremely large and extremely old boilers that heat air that then run through vents throughout the building. There is often a lot of heat loss and because of their age, the boilers often leak. Maintenance is also a pain because, if something breaks, they may need to have it custom-made which can be really expensive. Other systems use boilers which heat up water and send it through pipes to controllable radiators. Meanwhile, the new, updated buildings, such as the Sluplexs, have residential style HVAC that runs at 94% efficiency. Merrick uses a system of heat transfer. When one room gets too hot , a system will transfer the air from the room into a system that heats up a room that may be too cool. Basically, instead of forcing the air to heat or cool, it transfers heated or cool air throughout the building where it is needed. It does this through an automated system. Meek Aquatic Center gets its HVAC through geothermal power. Most buildings have automated systems as well. Once the temperature drops to a certain level, heating will turn on. In most cases, the temperature has to be 55° or below before the heating activates. These methods used in newer or renovated buildings are all efficient and environmentally sustainable.

Now that I understood what was being done on campus, I wanted to find what other campuses were doing and if their methods were more effective or not. Many college campuses implement similar HVAC systems that OWU uses, but a few colleges do wildly different things. University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Innovation Campus uses a system where waste water is used to provide heat. Waste water from a near by waste water treatment plant is brought to a central building where it is heated up and circulated throughout the campus before being sent back to the central building and back to the treatment plant. This method is likely outside of what OWU can do as an entirely new building would have to be built-in a central location and connecting building to a central heating area would be extremely costly or down right impossible without destroying older buildings.

Other campuses use geothermal on a larger scale then OWU does. The main way that campuses are saving money and improving efficiency is by using energy meters to track energy use. Colleges, such as Oberlin, can then make low-level changes such as adding automatic systems to control when heat is activated which save thousands of dollars in heating costs. In the interview with Peter and Jay, they stated that there are a couple of master meters set up on campus to monitor steam and natural gas use. However, there has not been a meter reader position in around 15 years. As a result, obtaining accurate information on energy use around campus has been difficult.

Problems and Solutions

With a better understanding of what HVAC methods are used on OWU’s campus and other college campuses, I needed to learn about the problems and ways to mitigate them. Jay stated that one of the problems with the newer systems is keeping up with technology. As technology in HVAC increases, it becomes more expensive to keep systems up to date and harder to find replacement parts for systems that are older. Financial management would likely cure this problem, but that is out of the scope of this project.

Maintaining efficiency is a problem that can be addressed. Replacing old systems cannot be easily replaced without major renovations or replacing the building all together. Instead, changes can be made on a smaller scale: through guiding behavioral changes and education. Many students and faculty have a limited understanding of how these systems work. In dorms that have radiators, students don’t often understand how to operate them. The fiddle with the rotating wheel control, notice that it doesn’t seem to be working, and instead open a window. This can affect the heating efficiency of the room since may still be running. Better education for students whom may not be familiar with operating radiators could solve this problem.


Links to Internet Sources:

OWU Representative Contacts: