Category: Sustainability News (page 2 of 31)

5 Ways Students Impacted Sustainability at Tufts in 2015

5 ways

Student efforts contribute to a culture of sustainability at Tufts in many ways. Your actions are invaluable, no matter how large or small! What you do each day affects Tufts’ environmental impact — whether you are participating in a sustainability-related club, planning a  zero-waste event, conducting sustainability research, or simply recycling and composting your waste.

Although students regularly contribute to campus sustainability, we wanted to highlight several initiatives from the past year that contributed directly to Tufts’ sustainability goals. These goals are outlined in the 2013 Campus Sustainability Council Report and focus on the areas of waste, water, and energy & emissions. Progress in these areas is tracked regularly and is detailed in the annual Campus Sustainability Progress Report. The list below is by no means comprehensive, so we encourage you to check out the report on Tumblr!

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Call for Papers: Reducing Urban Poverty (Graduate Students)

To encourage a new generation of urban policy makers and promote early career research, Cities Alliance, IHC – Global Coalition for Inclusive Housing and Sustainable Cities, USAID, the Wilson Center, and the World Bank are co-sponsoring the 7th annual paper competition for graduate students, seeking abstracts on urban poverty in the developing world.

The grand prize winner will receive a travel stipend to attend the United Nations Habitat III Conference in Quito, Ecuador, in October 2016. Winning papers will be published and selected authors will be invited to present their work in a policy workshop at the Wilson Center in Washington, D.C.

-See more at the Wilson Center website.

Abstracts Due: May 15, 2016
Apply Online

Senior Sustainable Agriculture Manager, Ceres, (Boston, MA)

Ceres is a not-for-profit organization that partners with institutional investors, large companies, environmental organizations and other public interest groups, with the goal of mobilizing investor and business leadership to build a thriving, sustainable global economy.

The Senior Manager, Sustainable Agriculture is a full-time position, reporting to the Director, Food & Capital Markets. The Food and Capital Markets Initiative is a new multi-organization collaboration working to enhance the sustainability of key food supply chains. Ceres responsibilities as part of this program involve working with Ceres’ Investor, Corporate, NGO, and Policy partners.

Apply Online

Easy, Breezy, Beautiful Green Office Certification

Easy, Breezy, Beautiful Green Office Certification

This semester, I was tasked with officially certifying the office space in the back of Miller, which houses the Office of Sustainability, Environmental Studies Program, Tufts Institute of the Environment, and grad students in the Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) program, under Tufts’ Green Office Certification Program. What seemed at the time to be a huge undertaking was actually pretty painless once I sat down and organized the following steps for filling out and submitting the Green Office Certification Checklist.

  1. Fill out what you can first!

I first went through the checklist and picked out the credits that I could answer on my own—if our lighting is controlled by sensors, if we have lighting and water use prompts, whether the equipment is ENERGY STAR rated, the accessibility of recycling and compost bins in the space, the recycled content of our paper and letterhead, our copier double-sided defaults, our shared office supplies and dishware, etc.

  1. Make a survey to send out to your colleagues

After completing the credits I could on my own, I picked out the credits about departmental policies and individual behaviors. I then developed a survey to send out to everyone who works in our office space with these questions to measure their personal behaviors as well as their awareness of departmental policies. In order to make the experience of filling out the survey a little less inconvenient and annoying to my co-workers, I tried to make the survey funny and engaging. I sent it out with a deadline and continued to send reminders every few days leading up to the deadline. Once it came and went, I sent individualized emails to those who had not filled out the survey. I followed up with them several times until nearly everyone had filled out the survey.

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Signed Commitment to Uphold Green Office Values in the Back of Miller Office Space.

  1. Commit to sustainability and earn bonus points

At the bottom of the Green Office Certification Checklist is an extra-credit opportunity for colleagues to sign to commit to reducing their footprint and take actions included in the checklist. This not only earns the office extra points on the checklist, but it also helps to generate office buy-in and foster a feeling of responsibility and accountability within the office when it comes to making more environmentally sustainable choices. I placed the sheet for office members to sign in a central location in the office, our kitchen, where it is easily accessible and a frequent reminder to all in the office space. I also sent reminders to sign the commitment in all my emails starting with the original send-off of the survey.

  1. Talk to purchasing and commit to changes

Once our survey results were in, I reviewed them and determined where we stood with all the sections of the checklist. I was left with a few options to get us the extra boost we needed to level-up and earn Platinum Certification. I decided to talk to the person in charge of purchasing for our office space. He was on board and committed to buying only shade-grown or organic coffee for the office space to support environmentally and socially responsible companies, reduce our footprint, and make healthier choices for our colleagues.

Taking these steps to complete and submit our Green Office Certification made the process both simple and quick. Thanks to the help and cooperation of my colleagues, our space has been officially recognized with Green Office Platinum Level Certification.

If you’re interested in certifying your own office, you can learn more about the program and download our Green Office Resources ebook on the Office of Sustainability’s website.Get Your Office Certified

5 Items You Need to Stay Waste-Free at the President’s Picnic

We’re already counting down the days to the 2016 President’s Picnics!

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Can you believe it’s almost that time of year? We certainly cannot. As part of Tufts’ university-wide commitment to sustainability, the events will once again be zero waste! If you can, we encourage you to BYOP (bring your own reusable place setting) to help Tufts reduce as much waste as possible. Learn why it’s important in our post from 2015.

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Zero Waste President’s Picnic Checklist:

  1. Reusable silverware or bamboo ware
  2. Cloth napkin
  3. Reusable water bottle
  4. Reusable plate or jar (lid allows you to carry without spilling)
  5. …and a bag to carry everything in!

All attendees who BYOP will be entered in a raffle to win a special grand prize at our table. The first 50 people on each campus who BYOP and visit our table will also receive individual prizes.

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This reusable lunch container could be yours if you’re one of the first 50 people to bring your own placesetting!

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If you’re the GRAND PRIZE winner, you’ll receive this stainless steel & bamboo ware kit!

Need a little more inspiration? Learn how a family of 4 lives a zero waste lifestyle & discover the unexpected benefits that come with it:

 

 

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