Campus Sustainability Day, Oct. 26

Celebrated nationally today, and on our campus

Today from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Oak Grove, the Saints for Sustainability student organization, Student Government, and Student Life are sponsoring a sustainability fair, featuring tabling by local groups and agencies, with lunch provided by Reggae Shack. The entire campus is invited to drop by.

As we continually work to make Santa Fe a more sustainable campus, here are a few recent developments.

Student Life, Sustainable Santa Fe, and Student Government have sponsored a new Bike Fix It station located in the S Breezeway under the stairs. This is a bike stand where bicyclists can work on their bikes, complete with tethered tools and a heavy-duty hand air pump.

RTS ridership is soaring with the expanded bus service to Santa Fe. Here are the latest ridership figures from RTS (PDF). Any student, faculty or staff can ride for free simply by flashing their ID to the bus driver. RTS has an app on their website that allows you to see where buses are in real time. Click on “Find Your Bus” to check it out. Service to and from campus runs from about 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. weekdays on routes 10, 23 and 43. With your ID, you can ride any RTS bus, not just the “SF buses,” any time, seven days a week.

Santa Fe has a carpool lot for students. It’s located south of the Gym. Two or more students must apply for a carpool pass together. Read more.

Bill Reese and our energy rock stars in Facilities continue their lighting change outs and other energy projects to make Santa Fe more energy efficient. You can examine Santa Fe’s energy use with a new tracking tool online at http://sfenergy.sfcollege.edu/. It’s interesting because it compares energy use year by year. Despite the addition of new buildings, the amount of energy the college uses continues to drop. Click here for a live feed to figures on the Library’s solar photovoltaic array.

The College is supporting sustainability in the wider community. We recently sponsored renowned author Richard Louv for a talk that was free and open to the public. Author Cynthia Barnett will also give a free talk about her new water book, “Blue Revolution: Unmaking America’s Water Crisis” at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 6 in WA-108. For more information, please contact Sture Edvardsson.

Santa Fe also recently participated in the second annual Environmental Youth Summit designed to introduce young people to environmental issues and volunteer opportunities in the community.

The college is working with UF Professor Emeritus Alex E.S. Green, a resident of The Village retirement community across from campus. Dr. Green is a renewable energy pioneer devoted to sustainability. As such, he wishes to partner with SF faculty and students on sustainability projects at The Village. He has met with several of our students, professors and staff and would like to help faculty design real-world research and service projects for our students. His email is aesgreen@gmail.com.

Daniel Freed is SG’s Sustainability Director this year, and he’s been doing a great job of getting the students on board with various projects. Kudos to him!

Projects in the works; if you would support any of the ideas below or have a strong interest in seeing these come about, we need to hear from you:

  • Exploring the possibility of having Zip Car service on campus, so if you do ride your bike or take the bus to work, and something comes up that requires you to have a car, you can rent a car for as little as an hour or two. UF offers Zip Cars and the City of Gainesville is also considering them. Zip Cars are in all major cities so once you become a member, you can use them on your travels.
  • Offering the option of community supported agriculture subscriptions to local organic farms, for instance, Swallowtail Farm. The college would simply serve as a drop-off point, only; you would sybscibe to the farm on your own. The idea would be to save you the trouble of traveling to a local farmer’s market to purchase fresh, local produce. Offering this option would also support Santa Fe’s wellness initiatives.
  • Offering a free discussion course, Menu for the Future, for any interested faculty, student or staff; this is based on a six-session discussion guide offered by the Northwest Earth Institute.

To place your name on Santa Fe’s sustainability mailing list or for more information about any of the above, please email Julie Garrett on the college’s sustainability committee, or call 395-5430.