On Tuesday December 6, Associated Students of Colorado State University Environmental Affairs and Sustainability held a forum in the LSC to talk about the sustainability process and the plans for sustainability at CSU.
The event included presentations on different aspects of campus sustainability from different CSU faculty members.
The first presentation was given by Carol Dollard, a utility engineer in facility management at CSU. Her presentation focused on the solar energy presence on campus.
Dollard explained that one of the largest aspects of CSU’s carbon footprints comes from the usage of electricity. Dollard said this is because most of the time, the electricity that CSU uses comes from burning coal, which raises emissions.
She went on to explain that different buildings across campus utilize solar energy and provide a fair share of electricity throughout the campus. For example, the Engineering building’s solar panels create 18.9 kilowatts of energy. Other buildings around campus also generate.
Dollard explained that if solar panels wanted to be built on the foothills campus, they would require 60 acres of land, but would raise the total megawatts of energy to around 8.
The next speaker was Tonie Miyamoto, a member of Housing and Dining Services Administration. Her focus during her presentation was CSU’s scoring in Sustainability Tracking, Assessment and Rating System.
Miyamoto explained that CSU is the first and only school to receive a platinum grade for sustainability. Miyamoto said CSU has received almost perfect ratings in each STARS section, even receiving perfect scores in research and innovation.
The third speaker was Tim Broderick, who is the Housing and Dining Services Assistant Director of Sustainability Coordinator. Broderick’s focus was on that of composting on and around campus.
He stated that CSU’s climate action plan is to reduce 80 percent of greenhouse gasses by 2030, as Fort Collins puts out around 2,500,000 metric tons of Carbon Dioxide.
In terms of composting, Broderick said composting has occurred on and around campus from around 2004 and still continues today. In many of the dinning halls including Braiden and Durrell, food pulpers were implemented to cut down on water waste when cleaning dishes.
Broderick also explained that around campus are new waste disposal systems that make it easier for students to seperate their trash. He also hopes to have a foothills campus compost expansion with the capacity to handle all of the food waste for the university.
The final speaker was Aaron Fodge, Alternative Transportation Manager at CSU.
“We have a pretty rich history of transportation at CSU,” Fodge said.
Fodge said transportation around CSU has become more green with the introduction of things such as the Max bus-line and increased bike lanes.
“It’s the quality of your life and your free time, ultimately that is what transportation is,” Fodge said. He said green transportation helps people because it saves time, money and it reduces stress.
The crowd there asked many questions to the presenters, so many so that the presenters had to cut off questions so they could keep on time.
One member of the crowd was Nogah Seidemann, the ASCSU deputy director of environmental affairs and a junior apparel and merchandising major.
“All these sustainability initiatives directly impact lives … a lot of it is related to social justice issues and the types of products we buy,” Seidemann said.
Another member of the audience included Stacey Baumgarn, campus energy coordinator.
“We all will now and in the future will make decisions about how we want to live our lives and different things we want to be engaged in, Baumgarn said. “So I think when we understand those trade-offs and the context of the decision, we understand the impact.”
Collegian reporter Austin Flasks can be reached at news@collegian or on Twitter @MrPacMan80.