Environmental Club improves campus footprint

Anna May

Arts & Life Layout Editor

There are many student groups on campus that are not widely publicized and deserve recognition for the many contributions they make to our campus community. One such organization is the Environmental Club.

This student-run organization has the goals of making our campus more sustainable, spreading environmental awareness and providing students with opportunities to become more involved with current environmental issues.

Unlike many other student organizations, the Environmental Club does not focus on raising money.

“The club focuses more on campus greening issues and environmental awareness on campus. We do, however, try to support other group’s fundraising efforts, such as the Bucknell Brigade,” president Rebecca Shopiro ’12 said.

The Environmental Club is responsible for many changes around campus. The organization is responsible for the placement of small devices called VendingMiser motion sensors on the soda machines around campus. This was the first project conducted under the new Bucknell Green Fund. The VendingMiser helps reduce the amount of energy used to cool the machines when they are not in use. Although it may not seem like a significant difference, the Environmental Club calculated that these gadgets save the University about $4,000 a year in electricity costs. This is one example of the many small steps that can be taken in order to make the campus more “green.”

At the moment, the Environmental Club is most concerned with planning events for Earth Day on April 22. Club members will give out free plants to students in order to help support the environment and create awareness for the holiday. They are also planning an event called “Swap Till You Drop.” Students are asked to bring in gently used clothing in exchange for a voucher. With this voucher students can participate in the event and pick up some clothes that other people brought. Clothes that are not taken by students will be donated to charity. This is a creative way of bringing students together while sharing the message that reusing can be enjoyable, as well as beneficial to the environment. 

There have been other changes around campus that can be attributed to the Environmental Club’s efforts.  A few years ago, the organization urged the Bison Café to switch from disposable plastic baskets to reusable ones. They have also helped with other events such as the fall environmental festival and a local pub night where the drinks are all served in glass mugs in order to reduce plastic waste.

In addition, they subsidized reusable water bottles sales on World Water Day in order to increase the number of reusable waters being used and decrease the number of plastic bottles being wasted. The club also held an Eat your Greens Event where environmental professors presented their research with students.

Although the Environmental Club may not always be in the public eye, there is no disputing that they are actively making changes at the University to improve the campus for us all.

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