Colleen Lanier Christensen: January 2011 Archives

Environment, Agriculture, & Food Seminar and Workshop Series

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EAF Seminar and Workshop Series: Winter 2011

Updated Schedule, January 26, 2011

Wed 1/19

12:30 - 2

EAF Seminar Speaker

Pam Cohen of Dix & Eaton, Erikson Institute and UChicago

Sustainability Matters: Food & Beverage Industry Examples

Haskell 101

Wed 1/26

12:30 - 2

EAF Seminar Speaker

John Felkner of NORC and U. Chicago

Spatial Economics and GIS for Environment, Agriculture and Food

Haskell 101



12:30 - 2              

EAF Seminar Speaker

Esther Bowen, Dept of Geophysical Sciences, UChicago

Eutrophication Impacts of Local Food Production in the Midwest

Haskell 101



4 - 5

EAF Workshop

Lyndon Valicenti, City of Chicago, Department of Environment

Chicago Urban Agriculture & New Zoning Rules

Cobb 115

Wed 2/16


4:30 - 7

Joint EAF/WGE Workshop

 The Urban Food Model: Perspectives on Economics, Science and Policy

(Panelists: Mari Gallagher, Pam Martin, TBA)

Franke Institute

Mon  2/28


4 - 5:30

EAF Workshop

Don Hanson, Argonne National Lab

Transportation Energy Demand in the Medium and Long Terms: Gasoline, Diesel, Biofuels, Natural Gas, and Electricity

Cobb 107




EAF Seminar Presentations

Students from the EAF research seminar will present their research results in a workshop setting

Haskell 101


Facilities Services institutes Policy on Bottled Water

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This year, bottled water has been a hot topic on campus. While students have been mobilizing to reduce the amount of bottled water sold and purchased on campus (stay tuned for a blog post on the topic!), Facilities Services has also made a commitment to think outside the bottle.

The newly instituted Policy on Bottled Water eliminates plastic water bottles in Facilities Services buildings, meetings, and events. Instead, Facilities Services is providing reusable pitchers, cups, and trays for serving water at meetings and events in the Young Building, supplying each staff member with a reusable aluminum water bottle from the Office of Sustainability, and promoting the continued installation of water bottle filling stations in all Facilities staff locations.  

"Facilities Services strives to be a campus leader in sustainability and this policy is just one example of our efforts to use resources -- both natural and monetary -- most efficiently," says Erin Wieand, Executive Director of Management Services, Facilities Services.

water bottle - crushed.jpgSo what's the beef with plastic water bottles? They rely heavily on fossil fuels in their production, packaging, and transportation, which result in massive waste and energy use. While plastic water bottles are indeed recyclable, the vast majority does not get recycled. In fact, plastic water bottles are the fastest growing form of municipal solid waste in the U.S., resulting in more than 4 billion pounds of PET plastic bottles ending up in landfills or as roadside litter! Moreover, the federal government does not mandate that bottled water be any safer than tap water and about half of all bottled water is really tap water in disguise, as many bottled water manufacturers simply source it from municipal water supplies. For more facts and information on bottled water, visit Environmental Working Group.

SAGE Advice: Dishwashers, microwaves, and refrigerators, oh my!

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These days, there seems to be an endless parade of appliances filling up our kitchen sockets and counter space. Some of these are bigger energy hogs than others, while a few simple actions can help you scale back your kitchen's energy consumption.

  • Your refrigerator should be set close to 37°F and your freezer set to 3°F to conserve energy. Place a weather thermometer inside the compartment to check its temperature and adjust the dials until you achieve the desired temperature.
  • Clean refrigerator gaskets regularly and vacuum the condenser coils twice a year. Your refrigerator will operate more efficiently and use less electricity.
  • Keep your refrigerator full. Food retains cold better than air does, so a near-empty fridge is working much harder to cool its contents. Don't over stuff your fridge either. Air circulation is needed to cool and control humidity.
  • Use a toaster oven for small jobs. It will use a third to half as much energy as a full-size oven.
  • If you have a "no-heat" dry setting on your dishwasher, use it. Heat drying is not necessary after a hot-wash cycle.

dish washer.jpgSource: Trask, Crissy. It's Easy Being Green: A Handbook for Earth-Friendly Living. Salt Lake City: Gibbs Smith, 2006.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of recent entries written by Colleen Lanier Christensen in January 2011.

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