SYRACUSE, NY, MARCH 8, 2017 – Sustainability Management at Syracuse University and student groups Students of Sustainability and Green Peace SU will be hosting a panel discussion on plastic pollution at 5:30pm followed by a free screening of “A Plastic Ocean” at 6:45pm on March 29 in Watson Theatre, in Watson Hall. Read more here.

First grants awarded for Campus as Lab for Sustainability

Six faculty and student projects will receive grants totaling $50,000 this spring through the new Campus as a Laboratory for Sustainability (CALS) funding program. The call for proposals sought projects that address climate disruption and offer opportunities for communication and outreach to the campus and wider community. Here are the winners:

  • Profs. Steve Chapin and Peter Wilcoxen, for an electric vehicle lab;
  • Profs. Amber Bartosh and Mark Povinelli, for a virtual reality simulation about energy awareness;
  • Prof. Jeongmin Ahn, to research membrane technology to reduce GHG emissions;
  • Grad student Kristina Gulches, to evaluate water and salt runoff on campus;
  • Profs. Jason Fridley and Doug Frank, to study carbon cycling in plants;
  • Grad students Hugh O. Burnham and Adam Fix, to develop an oral history of climate activism at SU.

Students push to eliminate plastic bags from bookstore

The Syracuse University Bookstore, in conjunction with the Student Association (SA), Students of Sustainability at Syracuse University and the Energy Systems & Sustainability Management Department, will be launching a reusable bag program starting this summer. The goal is to reduce usage of plastic bags, which can be harmful to the environment. Read the SU News story here.

Green Building grant announced

Professor Patrick Penfield of the Whitman School of Management and Prof. Rene Germain of SUNY-ESF were awarded a $19,000 Sustainable Enterprise Partnership Award. They will research the barriers to adoption of sustainable structural wood materials in construction. Read more here.

Carbon Standards have Economic Benefits

Nearly all U.S. regions stand to gain economic benefits from power plant carbon standards that set moderately stringent emission targets and allow a high level of compliance flexibility, according to a new study co-authored by Charles Driscoll, University Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering in the College of Engineering and Computer Science, as a project of the Science Policy ExchangeRead more about carbon standards here.

Biologists look at Climate Change effects on grasses

A team of biologists in the College of Art and Sciences is taking a long look at how climate change may shift the way the green grasses grow. Jason Fridley, associate professor of biology and co-founder of the Climate Change Garden at the University, is part of an international research project that has been examining the effects of warming climate on plant life in Northern England for more than 20 years. Read article.

Success in Spreading Sustainable Materials Management Practices

Twenty students from various majors gave presentations on their projects developed during the Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) Stewardship Program. The Syracuse University Environmental Finance Center (Syracuse EFC) organized the semester-long program which also included an intensive training series, where students learned about SMM concepts and practices (including Reduction, Reuse, Recycling, and Composting), youth engagement, and SMM education. Students were mentored through the process by Syracuse EFC members, and joined forces with a community organization, such as Syracuse Grows: Community Gardening and Urban Agriculture, SPCA, Syracuse Regional Market, local schools, and others to implement their newly developed programs which recommended specific ideas to improve sustainable practices and even cut costs. Students also forged relationships with members of NYS Department of Environmental Conservation and NYS Association for Reduction, Reuse, and Recycling. Project topics ranged from youth environmental education, urban gardening and food recovery, establishment of composting programs to creation of an environmental awareness blog. Students demonstrated their ability to really make a difference, even as a single individual, using a systemic approach. Each created positive change within our community and impacted views on the use of natural resources and environmental protection. For more information visit EFC’s website or Facebook page.