Volume 78, Issue 17
March 2, 2007

SEA Heads Conservation Attempts

BY ALISHA GEORGE
Elm Staff Writer

The Student Environmental Alliance is putting their efforts towards the George Goes Green campaign, to make people more aware of environmental issues and encourage people on campus to be more conscience of saving energy, recycling and other sustainability efforts.

Many students have signed the Green Pledge, where they can choose which sustainability efforts they wish to participate in out of ten possibilities.

Though I think the SEA's efforts are very worthwhile, and that everyone should care about these issues because they affect all of us, I just don't think people get what all of that really does to benefit them or the Earth.

The SEA is getting peoples attention by making these energy saving tasks into fun activities and Facebook groups to get people interested, but I think that the convenience factor and the trendy factor is missing, or isn't emphasized enough, in most of the sustainability efforts that the SEA has introduced.

Many people don't understand, and even I'm a little unclear, on how taking a shorter shower or using less electricity will help the earth. Energy has never been introduced to us as a nonrenewable resource, simply because people think it comes from thin air. Or a power plant, but who studies what they do, exactly. If we don't hear "coal" or "oil" both of which we know we will run out of one day, we don't think it's in serious need of being controlled.

What I've heard from several people is "Why should I be cold or in the dark? I pay (insert large monetary value) to go to school here so I should always be extremely comfortable!" Even parents are probably outraged that their kids are saving WC money for using less power when we see no sign of tuition cost dropping. The politics of the campaign and selfishness of people are very relevant and troublesome.

The George Goes Green campaign would probably benefit if the popularity of the movie "An Inconvenient Truth" was publicized around campus, and the fact that many celebrities are taking interest in Environmental Issues. Though we all don't want to admit it, famous people are huge influences on most college students.

Since so many people are unclear about the facts, the SEA could also tell us what saving even a little bit of electricity can do for our planet, and benefit our future on signs all throughout campus.

People have suggested that convenient shred-it containers in dorms in addition to recycling bins would make it more likely that people will do more environmentally friendly things, because it is not out of their way to do something to help the Earth. A cloth bag sale in the CAC would encourage people to buy them to shop with in stores, so they won't use plastic bags.

The efforts by the SEA are amazing and I hope to get more involved with the organization in the future. I hope more people help the organization to make it more prominent and popular on campus.