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Davis

Davis, California

Monday, April 15, 2024

UC Davis Office of Sustainability, ASUCD Environmental Policy and Planning Commission celebrate Earth Week on campus

Several events and challenges were planned to encourage students and staff to think about their environmental impact and build a culture of sustainability 

 

By KAYA DO-KHANH — campus@theaggie.org

 

The UC Davis Office of Sustainability and the ASUCD Environmental Policy and Planning Commission (EPPC) planned a number of activities and events for the campus community to celebrate Earth Week. Both partnered with The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) to present the Earth Week Challenge, which provides a list of challenges from four different categories: food and waste, water, energy reduction and education. Some of the challenges listed include using one’s organics as fertilizer, going vegan, binging climate change and sustainability films and only walking or biking for a week. Community members were encouraged to join the event and challenge others to participate through social media. 

The EPPC hosted two events on campus for Earth Week, starting with a seminar speaker event on April 18 by environmental lawyer and UC Davis Professor Tracy Windsor about the basics of environmental law and specific cases she has worked on. The event was successful and received positive feedback, according to fourth-year environmental science and management major and former EPPC Chairperson Mackenzie Field. The second event was a campus clean-up on Earth Day.

“We hosted a speaker event because responses to our Environmental Justice Survey Report from Fall 2022 indicated that more students wanted to learn about environmental justice,” Field said via email. “We are hosting a clean-up event to make a direct, positive impact on our campus. I hope the community continues to engage in sustainability throughout the year, not just during Earth Week.”

The EPPC also partnered with the UC Davis Office of Sustainability on the Cool Campus Challenge, a competition between UC Berkeley and UC Davis to claim the title of the “greenest campus.” The competition is running from April 3 to April 28 and encourages students to engage in climate-friendly actions to reduce their carbon footprints. Field said that there has been more engagement in the challenge this year than in previous years. 

“We hope the competition will gain more traction during Earth Week when students are more consciously aware of their environmental impact,” Field said. 

This month, the Office of Sustainability is promoting their Sustainability Champion Awards nominations for their Sustainability Summit on June 2, which is an opportunity for people on campus to recognize their peers who are environmental leaders on campus, according to Engagement Program Manager for UC Davis Sustainability Carla Fresquez. 

Fresquez also highlighted the Office of Sustainability’s recent partnership with Student Housing and Dining Services to give out free, reusable utensil sets to the campus community. There was a reusable utensil giveaway on April 18 at the CoHo and another on April 19 at the Student Community Center for the UC Davis Farmers Market’s Earth Week celebration. Fresquez said that the reusable utensil giveaways have been well received by both students and staff. 

“That has been a campaign that I have been really excited to see the response to,” Fresquez said. “We have been getting so many inquiries about how people can get their hands on one of these sets and how they can make these sets available to their whole departments so that they no longer need to purchase disposable items for break rooms and offices.” 

 

Written by: Kaya Do-Khanh — campus@theaggie.org