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Earth Week – Past and Future!

We here at the Office of Sustainability have trouble containing our excitement about all things environmental. So we decided that the best way to celebrate Earth Day was with not one but TWO weeks of activities! If you missed the first week, you can still get in on the fun with a variety of happenings (see below!).
Clothing Swap
Last week our Eco-Reps held a session on natural spas, and on Sunday we joined student groups on campus for EarthFest 2013! It was a beautiful day – the Eco-Reps held another successful clothing swap (look at all those clothes!), we tested students’ recycling IQs, students from a Climate Justice course presented their final project, and MORE!
Workhorse Reusable Shopping BagWe have also extended our Earth Week Scavenger Hunt for another week! Snap some cool pictures of specific items and people around campus, post them to our Twitter or Facebook pages, and you could win a cool reusable shopping bag that folds into its own pouch and is small enough to carry in a purse or pocket.

It is important to remember, however, that Earth Day (Earth Week, Earth Month) is just a greater surge in what should be a year-round effort. Make a change today, small or large. Take advantage of the many resources available on our website and blog, submit events and comments to help us improve, and always feel free to actually stop by to talk! Many thanks also to Tufts Institute of the Environment (TIE), the Environmental Studies department, and Tufts Sustainability Collective for all that they do!

Also happening this week:
If you live in a dorm at Tufts, don’t forget to take our short survey about the Tufts Eco-Rep program. By completing the survey, you will be entered into a raffle for $50!

Earth Week Events

Please join the Office of Sustainability for a free viewing of YERT: Your Environmental Road Trip! ”Called to action by a planet in peril, three friends hit the road – traveling with hope, humor, and all of their garbage – to explore every state in America (the good, the bad…and the weird) in search of the extraordinary innovators and citizens who are tackling humanity’s greatest environmental crises.” Expect to laugh, learn – and enjoy some FREE Flatbread PIZZA while you’re at it!
In addition to the  screening of YERT, here is a selection of Earth Week events happening on the Tufts campus or in the area!

And as always… Stay Green!

Program Manager, Greening Forward (various locations)

Greening Forward is a youth-driven, youth-imagined environmental network of 1,500 young changemakers. Our collective impact engages 10,000 community members in campaigns that recycle 60 tons of waste, plant over 200 trees, and save over 155,000 gallons of water. Our Program Manager supports the indirect and direct needs of our program team.

 

There is no deadline to apply, but applicants are encouraged to do so as soon as possible!

 

Learn more/apply.

Sierra Student Coalition Leadership Training (Various Locations)

The Sierra Student Coalition is taking applications for Sprog, its award winning grassroots leadership training
led by and for young organizers. For over 20 years, Sprog has ushered new energy into the environmental movement by creating a safe and fun atmosphere for young people to learn how to run real campaigns that win.
 
The SSC is offering six Sprog trainings this summer:
·         Northwest Sprog (6/23-30 – Girl Scout Camp Evergreen, Longview WA)
·         Mid-Atlantic Sprog (7/10-14 – Baltimore, MD) *note* this Sprog is the only Sprog happening in a city
·         Midwest Sprog (7/14-21 – Bradford Woods, Martinsville, IN)
·         Puerto Rico Sprog (7/22-29 – Campamento Maria Emilia, Añasco PR)  *this Sprog is held entirely in Spanish.
·         Southeast/Gulf-Coast Sprog (7/28 – 8/4 – Girl Scout Camp Wahi, Brandon MS)
·         Southwest/California Sprog (8/11-18 – Foster Lodge, Mount Laguna CA)
 
Applicants may apply directly at the above links. Teachers and mentors may also nominate them to attend here.
Applicants interested in a tuition or travel scholarship may apply for one here.
Got more questions? Check out our FAQ’s or email the SSC’s Training and Leadership Development Director: tim.harlan-marks@sierraclub.org.

Mar 31: National Wildlife Federation Campus Ecology Fellows Application due

NWF’s Campus Ecology Fellows confront climate change on their campuses and help to educate andengage the campus community on
climate action solutions. Monetary fellowship grants are awarded to undergraduate and graduate students working with members of the faculty, staff, or administration on projects designed to help address climate change impacts and to protect wildlife and habitat on campus and beyond. In addition to a modest grant, Fellows also receive project support, leadership development, recognition of their accomplishments and other perks.

 

This year’s Fellows will have the unique opportunity to work with one of four of NWF’s crucial “Keep The Wild Alive” campaigns:

  • Stopping Expansion of Dirty Energy
  • Safeguarding Wildlife and Habitat in the Appalachian Forests
  • Protecting Wildlife in Urban and Suburban Habitats
  • Clean Energy Solutions

Please visit www.nwf.org/Fellows to learn more and access application materials

For more information check out their flyer.

The Kyoto Protocol – Has It Worked?

Check out this incredible infographic on the outcomes of the Kyoto Protocol: Has it worked? Has it failed?

You can also find the original image, and more sustainability news, here.

Environment America Info Session

From Danielle Falzon: Environment America is hiring fellows into our offices nationwide to make a difference in environmental issues. We are looking to hire recent college graduates who have the passion, the commitment and the talent it takes to fight for our environmental values across the country. As an Environment America fellow, recent grads get a two-year crash course in the nuts and bolts of environmental activism ­ working alongside senior staff to plan and run grassroots campaigns, lobby lawmakers, set up and speak at news conferences, organize town hall meetings, identify new members, raise money, recruit and manage staff and much more. I¹m a fellow, and when I was a senior I was looking for a job that would allow me to make a real difference in the environmental issues that I cared about and this is definitely the job to do that. And after two years, fellows are ready to take on an even bigger leadership role in environmental advocacy.

 

Danielle will be hosting an info session in the Career Center (Dowling 745B) on Tuesday 2/19 at 6pm. The info session will go for about 30 minutes.

 

TSC holds Fall Sustainability Roundtable

TSC's Fall Roundtable drew members from the CSC working groups and various sustainability-related organizations around campus

Tufts Sustainability Collective, the active umbrella organization for environmental groups on campus, has been very busy the past two weeks! The student-run group hosted two successful events, a Sustainability Roundtable and a Sustainability Dinner at Dewick. Both of these events have become staples each semester, so if you missed them this time around, look for their reappearance in the spring!

This fall’s Sustainability Roundtable featured the Campus Sustainability Council‘s three working groups for Energy and Emissions, Waste, and Water. Each group presented their goals for the university and their progress since convening earlier this year, pursuing a dialog with members of the Tufts community, from students to the head of Facilities.

Energy and Emissions team-members noted the achievement of meeting the standards set by Kyoto protocol by 2012 and mechanisms for decreasing the university’s carbon footprint, such as increased efficiency and switching fuels to natural gas or to distributors with renewable sources. In order to reduce energy consumption as the community continues to grow, however, a university-wide effort is called for, and the educational aspect of this goal is where the Office of Sustainability comes in!

The Waste working group focused on reducing outputs to the landfills during new construction projects and building rehabilitation. They mentioned many waste-reduction goals and plans to collaborate with Tufts Facilities in particular to “use less, reuse and recycle more” before anything is dumped in the trash.

The Water team had great news to present, including some concrete actions already in motion on the Tufts campus! Projects so far have included water reuse systems for machinery in laboratories and elsewhere, reducing the water coming in by hundreds of thousands of gallons already, and the recent construction of a university rain garden near the lower campus dorms. Rain gardens are both visually appealing and ecologically sound, ensuring rainwater is infiltrated into the soil, cleaned naturally, and returned to the groundwater rather than sent with pollutants down the storm drains. The Water working group also discussed plans to enter the EPA’s RainWorks Challenge, a national infrastructure design competition, and to look into porous pavement and gray water systems.

Read more about what was discussed at the roundtable in Tufts Daily’s news article.

-written by Anne Elise Stratton

The Candidates and the Climate

While no candidate is perfect on climate change (and indeed, they all seem to be woefully inadequate), there are some differences:
 
PRESIDENT
Mitt Romney: despite his surprisingly good record on climate change while he was governor, Romney’s energy plan focuses almost entirely on pumping more fossil fuels into the atmosphere, a situation that would almost certainly ensure the world’s inability to reign in climate change (Rolling Stone has a pretty fierce write up of it, but you can read it yourself and see). Just one example: in his quotes about N. American energy independence, he uses a Manhattan Institute report that says, “In collaboration with Canada and Mexico, the United States could—and should—forge a broad pro-development, pro-export policy to realize the benefits of our hydrocarbon resources. Such a policy could lead to North America becoming the largest supplier of fuel to the world by 2030.” (what no-one seems to have told him, however, is that oil and gas companies that drill in N. America aren’t restricted to selling that fuel only to Canada, Mexico and the US – they’ll sell it to whomever gives the best price – as any good, non-government-run institution would do).
 
But anyhow, Obama’s no great climate champion these days either but at least he doesn’t blatantly ignore climate change or pledge to dig up and sell all the fossil fuels in North America. As an aside, Romney attacks Obama for ‘targeting old coal power plants’ – when, really, we wish he were targeting them, since those plants are some of the worst carbon emissions offenders.
 
Here is a summary of what the 2 candidates have said about energy and climate on the campaign trail.
 
US SENATE
Elizabeth Warren seems to support action on climate change – at least in words – but I doubt it’ll be a priority for her. Scott Brown, however, in June 2012 voted to ‘disapprove’ the EPAs endangerment findings on greenhouse gases and in March 2012 voted against ending tax deductions for major oil companies and extending incentives for energy efficient homes, plug-in vehicles and alternative fuels. They are considered one of 4 senate races with noticably different opinions on climate.
 
US HOUSE 
Jon Golnik doesn’t list ‘environment’ as an issue on his website, but under ‘energy’ he indicates he supports the Keystone XL pipeline, fracking and drilling in ANWR. OK, I guess that says it all. Climate doesn’t seem to be a priority for Niki Tsongas, but she states that she help[ed] to pass tougher fuel efficiency standards and incentives for renewable energy, so there’s hope there.
 
Don’t forget to vote!

Oct. 5: Presidential Campaigns Energy Debate

Date: Friday, October 5, 2012

Time: 7:30 pm [seating at 7:00 pm]

Viewing: MIT Kresge Auditorium, Televised by E&E TV

 

The MIT Energy Initiative and the MIT Energy Club are co-sponsoring a televised energy debate with representatives from the campaigns of President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney on Friday, October 5 at 7:30 pm in Kresge Auditorium at MIT. Event and registration information are included below:

Speaker for President Barack Obama: Joseph Aldy, Faculty Research Fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research and Professor of Public Policy at Harvard University

Speaker for Governor Mitt Romney: Oren Cass, Domestic Policy Director; Romney for President

Moderator: Jason Pontin, Editor of Technology Review

Questioners: Steve Hargreaves, CNN Money; Bill Loveless, Senior Editor of Platts; Monica Trauzzi, Managing Editor and Host, E&E TV

Sponsors: MIT Energy Initiative and MIT Energy Club

Two students will be selected to present a question for debate. Interested students must submit one question for consideration in their registration. Winning students will be notified by the MIT Energy Club and MIT Energy Initiative.

REGISTER to attend and participate! This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. A lottery will be conducted if attendance exceeds venue capacity.

For tickets and more information, click here.

Paid Marketing Internship for Public Radio on Climate Change

A national program on public radio is offering an internship (8 hrs/week @ $12/hr) to assist in promoting our programs online. Work with an established producer based at a small studio in Belmont Center and learn about the field of public radio. The intern will work primarily on a project to promote content relating to environmental responsibility. The internship requires a very dependable person who can commit to 8 hours per week at our office.

Please reply to this post to: interns@humanmedia.org. Include an email addressed to Executive Producer, Human Media, explaining why this internship interests you, what you would hope to gain from it, information on your background and available times you may have.

(No phone calls please!)

Thank you.

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