Earth Week programs promote sustainable living, caring for the planet

Katlin Sweeney, Editor-in-Chief


Various campus entities and student organizations have partnered together to create events in celebration of Earth Day and Earth Week.

Safety, Risk and Sustainability Services, University Student Union Activities Board, Sustainability Club, Campus REC, Associated Students, Inc., Tukwut Life and Department of Kinesiology collaborated on the five Earth Week events beginning on Tuesday, April 19 and leading up to Earth Day on Friday, April 22. Each event gives campus community members a chance to celebrate sustainable living and protecting the planet.

“It is a time for collective recognition and action to protect and preserve the Earth’s natural resources that each and every person on this planet relies on,” said Sustainability Manager Juliana Goodlaw-­Morris. “During this week, do something that helps our planet; walk or bike instead of driving, use reusable products instead of single use throw-­aways, buy local food or get involved with organizations protecting the earth. Earth Day/Week is about realizing we are connected to the one planet we share.”

Each event featured in Earth Week offers various giveaways to participants.

Cougars Care Earth Day Event will be from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, April 19 at the Arcade in front of the USU. Participants will paint ceramic pots and have the option to either plant a succulent or an herb.

The next installment in the Sustainability Speakers Series will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 21 in ASI Conference Room (USU 3700) and will feature the local company 3fficient.

“3fficient was chosen because they exemplify the themes and practices that the Sustainable Speaker Series aims to highlight. They’ve made their name in smart, clean and sustainable city design,” said Sustainability Club President and ASI Student at Large Representative for Sustainability Alex Caratti. The innovations they bring to our current, outdated infrastructure incorporate skills from a wide range of fields showing ultimately that sustainability is becoming an increasingly larger portion of our lives and that its here to stay.”

The final two Earth Week events will occur on Earth Day on Friday, April 22. The fifth annual Kick Butt Event will take place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Academic Hall 102. Participants will work with researcher and professor Dr. Devan Romero to pick up cigarette butt littering on campus and evaluate the environmental impact. Attendees will also receive a t-­shirt and lunch. To participate, they must register at [email protected].

“The Kick Butt annual event is a time to highlight the litter on our campus, even though we have designated bins for cigarettes in our designated smoking areas,” Goodlaw-­Morris said. “Last year, over 7,000 cigarette butts were picked up in only one hour on our campus. We are now sending out cigarette butt “garbage” to a company who turns the “waste” into plastic benches, chairs and tables, so the more we can collect in proper waste receptacles the more we can avoid sending to the landfill.”

In the evening on April 22, Earth Week will conclude with the Earth Day Party from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. in The Quad Courtyard. Activities will include succulent planting, mason jars giveaways and recycled art creation. Vegan desserts will also be provided to participants.

“No action is too small to ensure today and future generations are able to live with clean air, water and healthy ecosystems,” said Goodlaw-­Morris.