Imagine a university where we use less and recycle more, conserve water and energy and take advantage of public transportation. Many students, faculty and staff members believe Georgia State can be that university. Momentum for more sustainable campus practices is building thanks to the efforts of several groups - the Staff Council's Green Issues Committee, Georgia State's Building Services Department, the student-run Sustainable Energy Tribe and a faculty and staff group, Greening Georgia State.
"The key is creating awareness and changing the culture of the campus community," said Christopher Jackman, director of Georgia State's Building Services. "We need to focus on sustainability."
The first priority is to step up recycling. This academic year, Building Services wants the university to recycle 400 tons of paper products, plastic and aluminum containers and wooden pallets. Look for posters and a new Web site, prepared by the Green Issues Committee, explaining recycling services available on campus. If your office doesn't have a recycling bin, simply call Building Services at 3-0600 to have one delivered.
A similar education campaign for energy conservation, with tips on how to reduce power use, will be starting soon. Alternative energy sources will be showcased at a solar-panel powered concert and energy fair in the Library Plaza from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Oct. 14, hosted by the Sustainable Energy Tribe.
Water conservation is a focus as well. Building Services recently purchased eight 250-gallon water collection tanks to capture rainwater runoff for pressure washing projects and irrigation. Similarly, the new Science Center will have a condensate recovery system, saving 2.8 million gallons of water each year. Water-saving toilets and fixtures are being installed in the Student Recreation Center and soon other facilities.
The groups are looking for more partners with "green minds." Greening Georgia State is hosting a Green Bag Lunch Series from noon to 1 p.m. on Oct. 7, Nov. 11 in 718 GCB, and Dec. 2 in room 218 of the Natural Sciences Center, focusing on recycling, conservation, transportation and curriculum.