Nature Part 2 Notes

February 22, 2017

117-122: Discussion of the different styles of parks prompted me to reflect on Chicago parks today. Friends of the Park is an organization devoted to the “protection, preservation, expansion and improvement of the city’s 8,100 acres of parks and playgrounds.”  I find their word choice of “preservation” here interesting, because it refers to the upkeep of man-made playgrounds, which do not fit most definitions of “nature.” Friends of the Park has been involved with preventing the construction of parking lots, restoring gardens and conservatories, and recently preventing the construction of the Lucas Museum of Narrative Arts to keep the view of the lakefront from being blocked. This seems a little ironic to me since, from what I have observed, what people find most impressive about Lake Michigan when visiting Chicago is the Chicago skyline; they do not admire the actual lake as much as they admire the man-made buildings. When I think of Chicago parks, I think more about artwork and statues like the Bean, Buckingham Fountain, ice rinks and Crown Fountain; parks in Chicago seem to use the land to showcase human works and the culture of the city rather than connect with the green spaces of Chicago.

131: It was interesting to read about the different perceptions of landscape, and I could relate to the quote: “Theological and scientific innovations promoted feelings of awe for physical creation as an ordered system whose perfection mirrored that of its creator….” I think one of the reasons I am so interested in science is that I can further appreciate the world around me and connect with God. In conversations I have had with religious scientists, people have explained that this intricacy of the world serves as their proof of God’s existence. In a way, this also ties into the foundation of OWU’s Travel Learning program because it is heavily based on the idea that students can better appreciate places they travel to after formally studying and understanding components of that place.

156-158: “For social justice environmentalists the source of these problems is ‘environmental racism’….” One solution to environmental racism that we discussed in Environmental Ethics is science. For example, events related to uranium mining on Navajo land helped me to think that only if science is conducted in a non-bias way and people enforce regulations and educate the public fairly, scientific results can be effective in environmental justice. Science led to the discovery of what the casual agent for lung cancer associated with mining was, and John Harley’s work led to the definition of a working level (1412). By identifying the casual agent, the risk of danger became quantifiable, which led to regulations like New Mexico’s 10 working level-maximum (1414) and preventative measures like ventilation. Bias in the government system and a lack of publicity, however, limited success of regulations and preventative measures. Scientific findings must be made accessible and comprehendible to people, which PHS did not make an effort to do since some miners may not have had the literacy or English skills to understand the pamphlets they handed out (1413). These examples show that science leads to the resources to educate, though it doesn’t always mean people will choose to share scientific discoveries; its effectiveness depends on people with the power to spread such information in a fair way.

3

Here is an example of how “…propogandists exploited conservation and animal rights…” (170).

178: “…’designer’ animals – not only leaner chickens but a chicken that is nothing but lean flesh… ‘…our children will redefine living things as temporal programmes that can be edited, revised, and re-programmed.’” Thinking about the future of genetic engineering makes me uneasy because in extreme cases I believe it can lead to devaluing life as God intended it to be, but at the same time I can see it from an alternative perspective of God giving us the knowledge to take advantage of genetic engineering… I’m not quite sure exactly where I stand on this issue. This paper explains the complications with and examples of genetic engineering in companion animals like GloFish, inquiries about cloning deceased pets, the cloning of wild animals to prevent extinction, and the genetic engineering of farm and research animals for productivity. This website contains a draft of the FDA’s guidance on animals with modified genomic DNA. This website provides interesting examples of an artist’s portrayal of designer animals as satire.

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Kathryn Fleming illustrates the ridiculous idea that people can re-create the world to represent fantasy.

180-183: I like how Coates included arguments from both sides of what people think differentiates between animals and humans. I have always associated culture with humans, but in a way, animals have a type of culture too since they do have social hierarchies, niches and interact with members of their community. The discussion of bird communication as “dialects” containing “intra-community differences” reminded me of the specificity of certain bird calls which I think can be defined as language. For example, chickadees incorporate more “dee” notes in their calls as the size of a potential predator decreases (the call becomes more urgent when smaller predators, who are more likely to go after the small chickadees, are near), and chickens have a distinct call depending on if they see an air or ground predator.

190: “The crucial question is not how wild or natural nature is, but how healthy it is.” This reminded me of how the workers at Stratford had to cut down all the ash trees, even when new healthy trees grew, because the native trees could so easily become infested with amerald ash borers. In this example, I think nature was no longer natural because it was no longer healthy and invaded by an insect native to eastern Asia.

Questions:

116: What is your idea of an “ideal garden”?

133: “This desire stemmed from the belief that man’s essential nature resided in his emotions (‘I feel therefore I am’) rather than his reason (‘I think therefore I am’)….” Which belief do you identify more with?

138: What animals/plants are included in your “ethical circle,” if any?

176: “…by changing the weather, we make every spot on earth man-made and artificial… Nature’s independence is its meaning…’” Does nature have a separate existence from humans?

180- 183: Do you think human intellect, culture, language, tool-making capacity, artistic creativity and/or ability to think in abstract terms differentiates between animals and humans?


Nature pt. 2

February 22, 2017

Annotations from the reading..

I didn’t agree with the idea that there is no difference between natural landscapes and cultural landscapes.

Natural vs Cultural Landscape: Natural landscapes is the original landscape that existed before humans made any changes to it. Cultural landscape is the cultural properties that represent the combined works of nature and humans.

When he mentioned if animals had souls, I didn’t know wether to agree of disagree. Descartes said that speech embodied human rationality. So if you can talk then you are considered human therefore you have a soul. Intelligence didn’t matter. I still don’t know where I stand with this.

Gassendi doesn’t accept that animals exhibit behavior similar to the human language. Today, it is obvious that animals have they’re own way of communicating with each other. Not through physical words, but they do communicate through sound and body language.

 

 


Cooking Matters for Kids

February 22, 2017

Project Participant: Serena George

Description & overview of project:

Dr. Fink teaches a course called Cooking Matters, which is described as a hunger easement program. It educates adults on how to cook healthy, low-budget meals and how to avoid food waste. I would like to add an educational component for the children in the city of Delaware, with the goal of planning an event that helps them become more excited about eating healthy and cooking with their family.

I volunteer at Willis Education Center with the Big Brothers Big Sisters program, which is a mentoring program for 25 children grades 5-8. Some of the children in this program have a troubling home life, and a small thing I can do to support a healthy relationship between the children and their parents is to encourage the children to help their parents cook.

Every Tuesday, the children in this mentoring program spend 15 minutes eating a snack and socializing, 45 minutes studying and 30 minutes playing outside. Since exercise is essential to a healthy lifestyle (and the kids always have a lot of energy that they need to let out after a long school day), I am hoping to complete educational, cooking and gardening activities with enough time for recess afterwards. (It would be hard for the kids to re-focus after recess, so the recess will come last.)

Children will be given packets explaining MyPlate and the five food groups, then they will be given time to fill out a five-day meal plan that they can discuss with their parents. Each child will receive a letter addressed to their parents explaining the importance of MyPlate. This educational component is planned to last approximately 20 minutes.

I will then show the children how much sugar a glass of lemonade (the drink that is provided for the children every week at Big Brothers Big Sisters) contains, then have them try the healthier alternative of flavored water.

For the next 45 minutes, the children will make their own salsa and combine ingredients to make a yogurt parfait, then plant mint. They will be provided with the salsa recipe, information about local growers (depending on what food is supplied from where) and a handout explaining how to relocate the mint plant. This will be followed by time for recess.

This Cooking Matters for Kids event will take place at Willis Educational Center. I will reach out to the students involved in the Cooking Matters program, other HHK students and members of Veggie Club to recruit help. After contacting Stratford Ecological Center, Tad Peterson from Seminary Hill Farm, Bob Sullivan-Neer from Delaware County Community Market and Tortilleria La Bamba to inquire about plant/food donations, I will write a SIP grant to obtain pots, soil, seeds, chips, salsa and yogurt ingredients (depending on donation amounts), and printer points for colored handouts.

Outline of project:

Educational Component:

I attended a farm to table event hosted by Seminary Hill Farm and the students enrolled in Dr. Fink’s Cooking Matters class. The event started with everyone saying their favorite type of food. I think this would be a good way to start the activity with the kids, then I could transition into explaining MyPlate and what makes a healthy meal. Students will be given the below handout, then I will explain and give examples of the five sub-groups of vegetables (dark-green, red and orange, beans and peas, starchy, and other) and the two subgroups of grains (whole grains and refined grains).

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Next, the children will be given the below handout and asked to fill out the five-day dinner menu plan (with the help of their mentor). The letter for the parents will also be handed out at this time.

Drink Component:

The second activity of the farm to table event was an activity where we were given cups with different amounts of sugar and had to guess which drink contained what amount of sugar. Lemonade actually contained the most amount of sugar in the farm to table activity. Rather than give the children cups of sugar that they would probably eat, I will bring an example cup showing the amount of sugar one cup of lemonade contains, then substitute the lemonade for water flavored with fresh fruit, like the students who led the farm to table event prepared for us.

Food Component:

Next, the students at the farm to table event taught us knife safety, gave us a recipe for soup, and helped us prepare the meal. Since I can’t trust the children to handle knives, I will pre-slice all ingredients. Rather than making hot food which has the potential to result in burns, I have chosen to prepare chips and salsa (because it incorporates grains and vegetables) and yogurt with fruit (because it incorporates dairy and fruit).

Tubs of yogurt and pre-cut fruit will be laid out for the kids, then they can line up and make their own yogurt parfait. Salsa ingredients will be laid out and the children will combine desired ingredients in their bowls. Half of the children will make yogurt while the other half of the children make salsa, then the groups will switch. Recipes for the salsa and handouts explaining where the local ingredients came from will be given to the students.

Gardening Component:

After the kids are finished eating, they can put some soil in a small pot and plant mint. Instructions will be given about how to transfer the plant outside, which will serve as another bonding activity the children can do with their parents.

Exercise Component:

Children will play outside, as usual, with their mentors.

Potential Problems:

Seminary Hill Farms does not grow tomatoes in the winter, but they may have contacts for other regional growers. Tortilleria La Bamba is the closest tortilla chip seller near Delaware, but it is still far away in Cleveland. Also, it is a small shop and the owners may not be able to afford donating as many tortilla chips as the event would need; however, a SIP grant may cover that cost.

Bibliography:

“Cooking Matters @ OWU Health & Kinetics.” Sustainability & Environment @ OWU, 19 Nov.  2014, http://sustainability.owu.edu/?p=316. Accessed 21 Feb. 2017.

This website describes what the Cooking matters program is and provides Dr. Fink’s contact information.

“Serving Up MyPlate A Yummy Curriculum.” Choose MyPlate, https://www.fns.usda.gov/ sites/default/files/sump_level3.pdf. Accessed 21 Feb. 2017.

This packet describes what MyPlate is and explains the subcategories of vegetables and grains in detail. It also provides the 5-day dinner menu plan.

“My Plate at Home.” Choose MyPlate, https://choosemyplate-prod.azureedge.net/sites/default/ files/audiences/MyPlateAtHome-adults.pdf. Accessed 21 Feb. 2017.

This is a handout for parents describing the importance of interacting with their children when planning healthy meals. It gives examples of a balanced dinner and explains the importance of exercise.

Tortilleria La Bamaba & La Bamba Foods. http://tortillerialabamba.com. Accessed 21 Feb. 2017.

Tortilleria la Bamba was founded in Cleveland, Ohio and is a potential source to buy tortillas and spices. Contact information and order forms are found on this website.

Shah, Vrushabh; Brill, Michelle F. Cooking Brings Kids and Families Together. Visions 24(4): 1.

Research shows that cooking with children helps children establish healthy eating routines, helps to alleviate behavior problems and encourages family “togetherness.”

Anna Wildermuth

Anna is the Delaware County Program Coordinator for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Ohio. She has confirmed the ability to spend one of the program days carrying out this project, I am working with her to solidify a date and I will contact her again to ask about any potential allergy concerns.

Dr. Chris Fink

Dr. Fink is the advisor of the Cooking Matters program. I contacted him by email and he put me in contact with Sierra Wright.

Sierra Wright

Sierra is the Program Coordinator for Dr. Fink’s Cooking Matters program. She provided me with the idea of yogurt sampling and has offered to contact me before the weekly Cooking Matters program classes to inform me of the topic they will be discussing so that I can decide to attend the class if it will provide information relevant to this event.

Olivia Minervino

Olivia was one of the students who organized the farm to table event that I attended. I will contact her again for tips on organizing a food-related event.

Patrick Kaufman and

Patrick works with Seminary Hill Farm, who donated much of the food for Cooking Matters’ farm to table event. He explained the types of foods MTSO grows each season.

Tad Peterson

Tad is the food service and farm manager at Seminary Hill Farm. I will reach out to him to determine if MTSO would like to donate any food for this event.

Bob Sullivan-Neer

Bob works at Delaware County Community Market. I will explain my project to him and see if he has any input on where to obtain local food needed for this event.

“Growing Mint.” Bonnie Plants, https://bonnieplants.com/growing/growing-mint/. Accessed 21 Feb. 2017.

This website provides directions for planting mint. Mint should be planted during the         Spring in a moist and partly-shaded area.

“Salsa.” PBS, http://www.pbs.org/food/recipes/salsa/. Accessed 22 Feb. 2017.

This is a salsa recipe with instructions geared towards children.


Project Proposal

February 22, 2017

Recycling at Nationwide Hotel and Conference Center

Emily Bishop

 

Project overview: Recycling has been shown to be the best method to get rid of paper, in terms of environmental impact assessment (Villanueva et Henzel 2007).  According to a study from 1990, Americans will, either directly or indirectly, use 600 pounds of paper per year.  This is about nine times the world average.  The effect of this extreme paper use can be mitigated by recycling.  Recycling saves land, trees, water, and money.  Even more so, recycling has been shown to decrease Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere, preserve biodiversity, prevent erosion, and reduce the health hazards from the pollution created by making paper with virgin wood (Jones).  

The ultimate goal of this project is to establish a working paper recycling program at Nationwide Hotel and Conference Center in Lewis Center, Ohio.  The facility already gets non-paper items recycled by the city of Columbus, and recycles all paper that is shredded.  It has also implemented a lot of other sustainability methods such as automatic lights and low pressure shower heads.  However, there isn’t really anything set up for paper recycling.  The hotel alone uses a very large amount of paper and I can imagine the other buildings are using a similar amount.  Even though documents are shredded, those documents are usually the ones with security information which leaves almost all of the total paper to go into the trash.  There are even recycling bins placed around the facility, but are used as trash cans.  The staff that I have talked to is responsive to the idea and are willing to make the effort to start putting only paper into the recycling bins.  I think the program just needs someone to get it started.  

 

Project Outline:  

  1. Talk to the Director of Facilities to determine what the hotel already does to recycle, if anything
  2. Ask him if he would be willing to help me get a program started, and find out what I need to do.
  3. Work with maintenance and different department managers to get recycling bins set up in each area of the property.
  4. Inform co-workers of any new policies and teach them how to recycle properly (only put paper in the bins and nothing else.)
  5. Work with the Director of Facilities to help with the logistics of getting the paper picked up and ensure that it happens.  
  6. Pitch the idea to the General Manager to get approval.
  7. Determine paper use before and after the program has been implemented to ensure there was a positive change.  

 

Annotated Bibliography

Jones, P. R. E. (1989). Understanding paper recycling in an institutionally supportive setting: An application of the theory of reasoned action. Journal of Environmental Systems, 19(4), 307-321.

This paper discusses the benefits of paper recycling and how to encourage it in business.  I could probably use this information if I need to make my case for starting a recycling program because whoever I’m talking to about it doesn’t agree.

 

Villanueva, A., & Wenzel, H. (2007). Paper waste–recycling, incineration or landfilling? A review of existing life cycle assessments. Waste management, 27(8), S29-S46.

This paper took information from other studies about the best way to recycle and came up with the conclusion that recycling is the best method.  

 

Ryan Smith: Front Desk Manager at Nationwide HCC

Ryan is my manager and I work with him quite often.  He has been at the hotel the longest of my 3 managers and has been helpful with telling me who I should talk to.  He also started his own recycling program at the last property he worked at so I think he will be a good resource to help figure out a plan.

 

Gregg Gibson: Director of Facilities at Nationwide HCC

Gregg knows about all of the sustainability efforts the hotel already has in place and will have the most power to be able to help me start the program.  He already has logistics information for how much paper we currently use and would be able to get this information again after the program is in place. He is going to send me information on how to set up a paper recycling program and will help me actually get it set up.

 

Sue Bellen: General Manager at Nationwide HCC

As general manager, I need to have Sue on board in order for me to actually do anything.  She will be the one I go to after Gregg and I have set up the recycling program to get official approval and actually get it going.  

 


Project Proposal-Welcome Wildlife

February 22, 2017

Welcome Wildlife

Kylie Shaw

Description and Overview

College campuses take up a lot of space and owns a lot of space that aren’t taken up by buildings or walkways but are instead outside areas for the students to enjoy.  These areas could be great places for us to share our space with the native wildlife, but because of our lack of maintenance of these areas, they are lacking as habitats for these animals. The National Wildlife Federation certifies gardens and habitats that are considered wildlife friendly by standards that they have outlined.  This certificate is mostly just incentive to create a well rounded habitat for wildlife and to provide a general description of what that would entail.  I wish to create habitats on Ohio Wesleyan University’s campus that meet their guidelines and certify those locations.  To do this, the habitat needs to include three food sources, one clean water source, two locations for shelter, two places to ‘raise young’ which includes any place that is necessary or beneficial throughout the courting and breeding season, and use two separate techniques to maintain the habitat sustainably.          

The locations that I’ve chosen to expand to meet these requirements are the wooded area in between Selby Stadium’s parking lot and the discuss and javelin areas (Location 1), as well as the garden next to Sanborn Hall (Location 2).  Since these two locations already have food and water sources in place, as well as places for shelter, I will be focusing in adding places to ‘raise young’ and sustainable maintaining practices.  Before I am able to do this, the locations will need to be cleared of all of the litter that has gathered there.  I have already looked through Location 1 and there are a few large items that need to be taken out, but otherwise it is mostly small item litter.  Then, I will have to research what kind of habitats the native wildlife would need to go through their courting and mating seasons and find out how much of that can already be found in either location.  I will also be researching which  plants are native to this area and which are invasive.  With this information, I will remove the invasive species from the locations and, if needed, replace them with native species.  This meets one of the sustainability practice requirements.  For this requirement, I also will find out what kind of pesticide and fertilizer is being used in Location 2, since I don’t think there would be any used in location 1, and if they are chemical I will work to have them replaced by more natural pesticide or fertilizer.  Also for location 2, I believe that mulch is already being used for the garden, but I will make sure that that’s the case and make sure that it is also chemical free.  For location 1, I will find out whether the steep slope that leads down towards the creek is natural or a result of landscaping.  If it is a result of landscaping, then the rain runoff leading to creek could be leading to an increase in erosion.  If this is the case then I will find techniques to reduce this effect.  Some of these efforts, such as the initial clean up and invasive species removal, require an ongoing maintenance, so I would like to find a way to encourage students to continue upholding these habitat and sustainability standards.

Outline

A. Research and Explore

1. Research native plants to the area as well as past and present landscaping techniques used in the locations

2.Find any invasive species or chemical maintenance practices in the locations

3. Find places that already meet the requirements

4.Find places that could fill the requirements with some additions or changes

B. Communicate

1. Talk to Ohio Wesleyan grounds maintenance workers about any changes that would need to be made to products used or to the area in general

2. Get approval for any additions or changes that would have to be made

C. Do the work

1. Removal of litter and invasive species

2. Addition of native species as habitat, food, and breeding places

3. Implement sustainability/habitat practices as necessary/able

a. Change of landscaping to reduce erosion

b. Addition of dead trees or nesting boxes

c. Addition of mulch

Annotated Bibliography

“A Wildlife-Friendly Garden.” RSS. The Humane Society of the United States, Web. 22 Feb. 2017. <http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/resources/tips/gardening_wildlife.html? referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com%2F>.

The Humane Society offers suggestions for a wildlife friendly garden, using native plants as food and shelter.  They also make the point to include plants that offer year round protection and food for animals.  They also include suggestions for animals besides birds and butterflies, which are the wildlife that most gardens are geared towards and welcoming to.

“College Sustainability Best Practices: A Resource for Colleges and Universities.” Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, 2008. Web. 22 Feb. 2017. <http:// http://www.mass.gov/eea/docs/eea/lbe/lbe-campus-sustain-practices.pdf>.

This website provides examples of different sustainability projects that could be done on a college campus.  Most of these are aimed at making the college buildings and college life more sustainable, rather than the outdoor space being more sustainable. However, these projects, if applied on a campus wide scale could largely affect the overall sustainability of any college campus. The projects would have to on a large scale, though, and it would be best to implement many of these practices rather than one or a few.

“Go Native!” Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Web. 22 Feb. 2017. <http://ohiodnr.gov/ gonative>.  The Ohio Department of Natural Resources provides lists of native plants and alternatives to commonly used invasive species for gardens.  The list of plants is separated by type of habitat the area is and can be used to plan any changes to plant life in the locations.

“Habitat Feature: Snags.” Habitat Network. Web. 22 Feb. 2017. <http://content.yardmap.org/ learn/habitat-feature-snags/>.

This website explains the environmental impact of snags or dead trees, which is one of the options listed under the checklist.  They are extremely beneficial for a wide range of wildlife and are considered essential to a well rounded habitat.  It also offers an artificial snag option for gardens made out of a dead tree from somewhere else.  This would offer shelter to a wide range of wildlife in the locations chosen.

Jones, Kristy, Courtney Cochran, David J. Eagan, and Juliana Goodlaw-Morris. “The Campus Wild.” Naturalist, National Wildlife Federation How College and University Green Landscapes Provide Havens for Wildlife and “Lands-on” Experiences for Students Web. 22 Feb. 2017. <http://www.nwf.org/~/media/PDFs/Campus-Ecology/Resources/The- Campus-Wild/The-Campus-Wild-Aug25-LowRes-(1).pdf>.

This source contains examples of wildlife friendly and habitat protection projects done by other college campuses, under section 3.  The description of the featured colleges’ work explains what each location did, and each of these examples are fairly specific to each school’s location and that areas’ natural habitat.  I would like to incorporate some of these ideas, however an exact replica would be impossible with the difference in school location and amount of owned property.

“Landscaping the Sustainable Campus.” Indiana Wildlife Federation. Web. 22 Feb. 2017. <http:// http://www.indianawildlife.org/habitat-programs/landscaping-sustainable-campus/>.

The Indiana Wildlife Federation has a program for college campuses to aid in sustainable landscaping practices.  While this isn’t exactly the same as the wildlife garden explained by the National Wildlife Federation, it does explain some similar sustainability practices as the NWF for their certification.  The steps described on this website could be useful in creating the sustainability needed for the wildlife garden.

“Landscaping with Native Plants.” The Native Plant Society of Northeastern Ohio. Web. 22 Feb. 2017. <http://nativeplantsocietyneo.squarespace.com/landscaping-with-native-plants/&gt;.

This website lists native plants that could be used for gardens and landscaping in Northeastern Ohio.  With some checking, these plants could most likely be used for a wildlife friendly garden on campus.  These native plants would promote wildlife interaction with the gardens and offer a more environmentally friendly habitat for the area.

“National Wildlife Federation’s Garden for Wildlife: Garden Certification Walk-through Checklist.” National Wildlife Federation. Web. 22 Feb. 1017. <http://www.nwf.org/~/ media/PDFs/Garden-for-Wildlife/Certified-Wildlife-Habitat/NWF_Garden-Certification- Checklist.ashx>.

This source lists the requirements to be certified with the National Wildlife Federation as a wildlife habitat.  This checklist will be my guide for any improvements I want to make in my locations.  Since the locations I will be working with already have the food and water requirements, I will be focusing on the ‘raising young’ and ‘sustainability practices’ portion in order to meet the requirements.

“Protecting Wildlife on Campus.” National Wildlife Federation. Web. 22 Feb. 2017. <http:// http://www.nwf.org/Campus-Ecology/Get-Involved/Protect-Wildlife-On-Campus-Certify-Your- Campus-Habitat.aspx>.

This website is aimed at college campuses, providing  different opportunities to become a more sustainable and wildlife friendly campus.  They provide examples of sustainability projects that could be done on done on a college campus as well as examples of projects that other colleges have already done.  Along with these examples is the certification through the National Wildlife Federation to become a certified wildlife garden, which is the organization’s example of how to make a college campus, or any location, more wildlife friendly.

“The 39 Greenest Universities of 2016.” Best Colleges. 16 Feb. 2017. Web. 22 Feb. 2017. <http://www.bestcolleges.com/features/greenest-universities/&gt;.

This is a list of colleges, as measured by best colleges, named most sustainable.  The description of the colleges includes not only how the are sustainable and teach sustainability within the class, but also clubs and programs that offer sustainability practices on campus that can be implemented on other college campuses.


Project Proposal

February 22, 2017

Watch your butts!   

Cigarette butts contain all the carcinogenic chemicals, pesticides and nicotine that make tobacco use the leading cause of preventable death worldwide, yet trillions are dumped into the environment each year. Countless American smokers believe cigarette butts are an exception to the no littering rule because for some reason they think that cigarette butts are biodegradable. Most cigarette filters are composed of cellulose acetate which is a form of plastic. The white fibers in the cigarette filters which look like cotton is actually a plastic that does not degrade. Dozens of cities across the nation are fed up with this waste problem. Cities have passed bans on smoking on beaches and parks. In San Francisco, California the city applies a 33 cent a pack tax to cover the $11 million that the city spends annually removing the cigarette litter. Nationally cigarette butts account for 25% of litter on the streets.

I’ve been noticing that the number one littered item on campus appears to be cigarette butts. I predominantly find them more on the residential side compared to the academic side of campus. It’s very common to find them right outside entrances and exits of the dorms and especially at the designated smoking areas. The purpose of my project is to help keep the campus clean of this toxic waste. I plan to put Plastic Smoker’s Receptacle waste cans at almost every entrance of Stuyvesant Hall and one at the main entrance of Smith Hall. The brand that produces these waste cans is called ULINE and the cans themselves cost $48 but discounts may be applicable when purchased in bulk. These are the same cigarette cans the school has on the academic side of campus. There are some of these cigarette butt cans already on the residential side of campus, but they are either not conveniently placed or broken. So I need to find it is who is in charge of maintaining the cigarette butt trash cans and how I can get funding for the Plastic Smokers Receptacle.


Nature Pt. 2 – Current Event

February 22, 2017

Nature- Part Dos 

In the second  half of Nature, there are two points that struck me. The first point was when Coates talks about how in our world today, there are no landscapes left that have not been altered in some way by human interaction. I definitely agree with Coates on this point, but with how much the human population has grown, and is growing, it was almost inevitable that this would happen. The second point that struck me is when Coates writes about how Capitalism is the center of all our problems with the environment. At first, I did not agree with this point, but when I started to look deeper into what he was saying, I understood where he was coming from. In a capitalistic society, it creates a self drive to be at the top. This drives people to be profit driven/oriented, which for many does not mean looking at the negative externalities they are creating by how they are making their money. For example, if an owner of a company is making $500 billion but is also destroying thousands of acres of trees as well as homes to thousands of animals, they are not going to care at all about the animals, because at the end of the day they are making $500 billion. Even though businesses today are looking more into how they affect the enviroment, Coates brings up a good point that is still a struggle in our society today, especially in the USA.

 

Current Event:

Outdoor air pollution tied to millions of preterm births

-The Stockholm Environment Institute found that in 2010, about 2.7 million preterm births globally (or 18% of all preterm births) were associated with air pollution, specifically the particle PM2.5. This particle is harmful to humans due to its ability to go deep inside the human lungs. The main sources of this particle being released into the air are diesel vehicles and agricultural waste-burning. On the eastern side of the world, the biggest issues of PM2.5 are in African and South Asian countries.

 

 

Image result for air pollution diesel trucks

Image result for preterm babies