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09/30/2009 - Minutes

Hello SOPE-ers!

Tonight's intro question was "what's your favorite season and why?" so if you didn't come....think about it (to pretend that you came) and come next week to answer an awesome new question! Autumn was the resounding winner at the meeting.

Instead of enviro-facts, this year we are doing enviro-news! One person will bring a piece of environmental news each week. Stay tuned.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Earth Aid Fellowship: online service allows people to track emissions/environmental impacts. There is a college student fellowship to get the word out about their group. Application is super easy (but it's due on FRIDAY) and can be found at http://www.earthaid.net/action_center/university_fellows

350.org day: If you haven't heard of 350.org, go visit the site. Or, I will briefly tell you about it...it's a website that sprung up to educate people about the necessity of limiting the amount of carbon in the atmosphere to 350 parts per billion...otherwise, climate change will get really bad. In prep for Copenhagen, 350.org is throwing an International Day of Climate Action on Oct. 24. We're planning something BIG and AWESOME here at Carleton, so if you want to help with the planning, come

TOMORROW

(thursday) to UPPER SAYLES during COMMON TIME (noon).

Bioneers conference: On Oct. 24/25, there will be a two-day conference at the U of M. Michael Pollan (author of Omnivore's Dilemma) will be a speaker via satellite, as well as Jason McLennon (environmental architecture). Email Milli Harris (harrisa) if you want to go! more info can be found at http://www.nbconference.org. It should be super cool.

Empowering Sustainability in Your Community: Christie Manning (Environmental Studies, Macalester College) and Elise Amel (Environmental Studies and Psychology, University of St. Thomas) will be presenting "Empowering Sustainability in Your Community" Monday, October 12 at 7pm. This workshop will present psychological findings relating to sustainability and sustainable behavior change. They'll discuss hands-on tools and strategies that you can put to use right away.
Again, that is Monday

Oct. 12

at 7 p.m. at St. Olaf Regents Hall, Room 310.

EAC update: The EAC (Environmental Advisory Committee) meeting was today and so the SOPE members who are also EAC members gave a quick update. We learned that: 9% of our emissions come from fuel we burn and electricity we purchase. The second wind turbine has funding, but they are looking at the model to purchase, as well as pick a site (there were zoning issues before). We could take the power directly into our grid. There is also talk of a THIRD turbine. There are tax incentives to get green power, but we don't qualify currently, so they're trying to find ways to finance these projects. A company looked at solar panels and geothermal, but solar power would take 34 to 94 years to pay back (with tax incentive would be 9 to 14 years), while geothermal would be 9 to 13 years payback (or 4 years with the tax incentives). The new Arts Union will have its own utilities system so they're trying to decide what to do about that system. They are presenting the newest Arts Union plan to the trustees this fall, and would tear down Arena Theatre. They are trying to decide what to do about the old Arena and Concert Hall buildings. Fred Rogers said that the housing committee recommended 380 new beds be added but the new dorms were only 230 new beds, so they are thinking of finding places to add more beds (such as moving the Wellness Center and reclaiming Davis, building more townhouses, building a small new dorm) but it's all speculative right now. The display in Sayles is really cool and is online and found at energy.carleton.greentouchscreen.com

.

TASK FORCES

SRF: working on creating proposals for the Sustainability Revolving Fund

PEAR: working on Publicity, Education, Awareness and Recruitment. Threw around the idea of using our $1,500 as prize money for people whose SRF proposals were accepted.

Composting: Looking into composting in the dorms/checking up on Bon Appetit and utilizing this awesome Earth Tub that we have.


Thanks to everyone who came!
See you all next week in Sayles 251 at 9 p.m.!