Going Green on campus

Being Green at school is more than just a fashion statement — it's a way of (university) life

Surviving a real green campus means a lot more than just updating your bedroom decor.

Being Green at school is more than just a fashion statement — it’s a way of (university) life

Catching the green thumb in college and university is becoming a growing part of the post-secondary experience.

“It is not only important to reduce your personal carbon footprint, but to get involved in the on and off-campus community to make a difference bigger than your individual acts,” says Miranda Maslany, a UVic sustainability intern.

Kelsey Mech, a leader of UVic’s environmental club Common Energy, agrees. “When you’re in an environment like a university, you have the ability to have an impact on how a larger institution works.”

If you are just starting out and want to reduce your carbon footprint (the amount of carbon emissions you contribute to the atmosphere) there are many ways to get involved.

Rita Fromholt, UVic’s sustainability coordinator, says students should, “think of sustainability as three broad areas: transportation, waste and energy.”

Conserve Energy

“The main thing for students that don’t live on campus is to turn off the lights when you leave the classroom or study space,” says Fromholt.

Living on campus presents students with other ways to conserve energy. “In residence there is usually a sustainability themed building,” says Maslany. “You don’t have to be in that building to be sustainable, there is just a stronger culture within that building.”

Be Alternative

Choosing alternative forms of transportation is both an encouraged and effective way to make an impact on the environment.

“Use the UPASS, take the bus around,” says Fromholt. Nannette Plant, Camosun’s executive assistant at the Strategic Development Division, adds that more students are definitely choosing alternative transport from biking to walking depending on their campus.

Both Camosun and Uvic have facilities for students who want to bike. UVic has showers for bikers and special lockers, while Camosun has bike fix -it stations and secure bike parking. UVic also provides students with a borrow-a-bike program called SPOKES and has a Bike Kitchen, where students can maintain bikes.

Get Political

Get politically active, join a club, get engaged, says Fromholt.

One of the best ways to make a positive change within the community and the country is to advocate for better environmental polices and initiatives. Whether it is joining a club on campus that advocates for environmental issues or writing a letter to your local member of parliament, anything helps.

Waste Not

Reduce your waste creation by taking advantage of your campus’ waste reduction plan. Whether your school has implemented a three-bin system (compost, garbage and recycle bins) or has put in a plastic bottle ban, you can do your part.

Be a Tourist

Take an environmental tour of your new campus to get acquainted with what green tools and resources the campus offers you. “Take a green tour of your campus,” says Plant. “If you’re really interested in knowing what green things are being done on campus, ask, don’t hesitate.” M

Just Posted

Pet-A-Palooza a good reason to ‘pawse’ this weekend in Victoria

Puppies, goats, wiener dog races and more on the grounds of St. Ann’s Academy Aug. 18-19

UVic art display showcases craft of bookmaking

Art of the Book 2018 is in the Audain Gallery at UVic from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. starting Aug. 11

Celebrate local food with Feast of Fields in North Saanich

21st Feast of Fields on Vancouver Island is at Kildara Farms on Aug. 26 from 1 to 4 p.m.

RIFFLANDIA: Local artists thrive under festival model

Bands like Current Swell, one of the 2018 headliners, made their mark at RAP

Baseball’s HarbourCats wind up WCL season with loss to Pickles

Victoria needed a win to make the league playoffs, now looks ahead to 2019

Updated: ‘Queen of Soul’ Aretha Franklin has died

Publicist Gwendolyn Quinn reports Franklin passed Thursday at 9:50 a.m. at her home in Detroit

REVIEW: Ever wanted to be young again? Theatre Skam’s Concord Floral will make you think again

Strong acting in an interesting theatre space, writes Sheila Martindale

Brad Pitt says he has given Jolie Pitt millions since split

Actor Brad Pitt denies Angelina Jolie Pitt’s claim that he has paid no meaningful child support.

WINE LOVERS UNITE: Victoria festival offers numerous tasting options

Parkside Hotel and Spa hosting Victoria International Wine Festival

Farquhar Auditorium updates image for 40th season

The Farquhar at UVic ushers in new season Sept. 22

THEATRE SKAM: Young cast brings Concord Floral to life in vacant downtown retail space

Former office supply store a unique venue for telling mysterious tale of youth with secrets

Schedule released for world junior hockey championship in B.C.

Vancouver and Victoria ready to host, as Canada conducts training camp in Kamloops

Five things to do this B.C. Day long weekend

Check out these great community events in Greater Victoria

5 things to do in Greater Victoria this weekend

Check out dragon Boats, artists, football and more

Most Read