Thursday, December 11, 2014

State of the Birds 2014

Some of the country's most important conservation groups have just put out a report on the State of the Birds.  Read it here.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Power Down Reminder


Just sharing a nice reminder from Western's Office of Sustainability about "powering down" before the winter break!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Sustainable Mongolia... at Western!

This week the Seattle Times had an article about President Shepard and others from Western visiting China and Mongolia to improve our ties there.  

One of the group was Dean of Libraries Mark Greenberg, and one reason for that is that Western has the  the largest collection of Mongolian texts in North America.  Really!  You can read all about it - and the amazing gifts and hard work that made it possible - here.

But that got me wondering: do any of our 12,000+ titles about Mongolia talk about sustainability? Yup.  Here are some examples, all in English.


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Have a happy and sustainable Thanksgiving!

 Photo from U.S. Department of Agriculture.  License.

(In case you don't know, that's a photo of how they harvest cranberries.)

I went looking for ideas on making Thanksgiving more sustainable.  Here is some of what I found.

Talk Turkey: Tips for Sustainable Thanksgiving.  From LiveGreen Tennessee.

A more Sustainable Thanksgiving Feast.  From WLOX.

Sustainable Table: Talking Turkey.

Sustainable Thanksgiving Meals and Recipes.  From Mother Earth News.

Green Inspiration: Create Sustainable Thanksgiving Traditions.  From Taiga.


Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Monday, November 3, 2014

See and Be Seen


Fall and Winter means shorter days, longer nights, and more darkness. WWU Sustainable Transportation and other sponsors are launching the "See and Be Seen" safety campaign to education and equip pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists with what they need to be safe on the road. Tomorrow, November 4th, there will be a "Seen and Be Seen" info table in front of the Viking Union where you can pick up free lights, safety tips, reflective materials and coupons for lights. For more info, check out this piece in Western Today. And remember to See and be Seen!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Smithsonian Institution and the environment

Maybe only library-heads would be interested in this, but what the heck.  The Smithsonian Institution has a library that just contains scientific material about Chesapeake Bay.  Who knew?  By the way, "Grey Literature" is material not published through the standard systems, i.e. commercial publishers or scholarly journals.  Think of all the "white papers" and reports issued by non-profits, for example.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Huxley College Speaker Series & Elwha: a River Reborn


As you probably already know, the Huxley College Speaker Series takes place every Thursday throughout the quarter, and features a variety of knowledgeable speakers presenting on a range of fascinating topics. You can see the whole list here, but I also want to direct your attention to two of the upcoming sessions in particular since they complement the Elwha: A River Reborn exhibit currently on display in Special Collections.

Thursday, November 6th from 4:00 to 5:30 pm in the Wilson Library Reading Room: "Freeing the Elwha" panel discussion featuring faculty from Western and Northwest Indian College who will discuss the Elwha restoration and its broader implications.

Thursday, November 13th from 4:00 to 5:30pm in the Academic West building Rom 204: Film Return of the River, with Director John Gussman in attendance & hosting a Q & A after the screening.

Both of these events are free and open to the public. Also, a reminder if you haven't already seen it, stop by Special Collections (Wilson Library 6th floor) Mon-Fri between 11:00 am and 4:00 pm to see Elwha: A River Reborn,  the traveling exhibit from the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, now on display at WWU and supported by a partnership between Western Libraries and Huxley College of the Environment.

Friday, October 24, 2014

3 pillars

I was looking up the Three Pillars of Sustainability and saw this page with some nice diagrams illustrating it...

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Allen Hershkowitz Coming to Campus Next Week!



Just noticed this in today's Western Today: Allen Hershkowitz will be speaking on campus next week, October 21, 2014 in the Communications Facility Room 120 at 2:30 pm. This event is free and open to the public.

For more info, check out this link: http://www.onlinefast.org/wwutoday/news/godfather-of-greening-to-speak-at-western-oct-21 

Thursday, October 2, 2014

David Patrick speaks on solar energy today

In the first lecture of the 2014-15 Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series, David Patrick, WWU Professor of Chemistry, will discuss the science of solar energy on Thursday, October 2 in Communications Facility 120 on the WWU campus. The presentation is free and open to the public.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Elwha: A River Reborn


We are pleased to share with you the exciting news that Western Libraries and Western Washington University’s Huxley College of the Environment are partnering to host Elwha: A River Reborn, a new traveling exhibit from the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, from Oct. 6 through Dec. 30 in Western Libraries Special Collections (Wilson Library 6th Floor).

Based on a Mountaineers book of the same name by Seattle Times reporter Lynda Mapes and photographer Steve Ringman, the exhibit takes viewers to the Northwest’s legendary Elwha River Valley to discover the people, places, and history behind a remarkable regional story – and the largest dam removal project ever undertaken. Through first-person accounts, stunning photographs, and informative text printed on free-standing banners, follow the Elwha’s journey from abundant wilderness to economic engine – to an unprecedented experiment in restoration and renewal that has captured global attention.


In conjunction with this exhibit, a variety of events will be offered throughout fall quarter, including two Huxley College Speaker Series events and two screenings of the film “Return of the River” (with director John Gussman in attendance), one on campus and one at Bellingham’s Pickford Film Center (PFC), The PFC screening of this film is being co-sponsored by the Pickford on Saturday, October 4th at 6:30 pm, with a reception scheduled for the film beginning at 5:30 pm and offered as part of their "Doctober" month-long celebration of documentaries showcased throughout the month of October.


Elwha: A River Reborn was developed by the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture in collaboration with The Seattle Times, Mountaineers Books, and the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe. National touring sponsor is The Snoqualmie Tribe. Sponsorship of the local presentation of Elwha is provided by Western Libraries and Huxley College of the Environment at Western Washington University.

Stay tuned for more news coming soon about other related events and opportunities to learn about Elwha: A River Reborn.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Make today a Sweater Day, in the Learning Commons

Western Libraries kicks off our Conversations in Common series today in the Learning Commons, 10 AM to Noon.  Think globally, mend locally.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Elwha: A River Reborn


We are pleased to share with you the exciting news that Western Libraries and Western Washington University’s Huxley College of the Environment are partnering to host Elwha: A River Reborn, a new traveling exhibit from the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, from Oct. 6 through Dec. 30 in Western Libraries Special Collections (Wilson Library 6th Floor).

Based on a Mountaineers book of the same name by Seattle Times reporter Lynda Mapes and photographer Steve Ringman, the exhibit takes viewers to the Northwest’s legendary Elwha River Valley to discover the people, places, and history behind a remarkable regional story – and the largest dam removal project ever undertaken. Through first-person accounts, stunning photographs, and informative text printed on free-standing banners, follow the Elwha’s journey from abundant wilderness to economic engine – to an unprecedented experiment in restoration and renewal that has captured global attention.


In conjunction with this exhibit, a variety of events will be offered throughout fall quarter, including two Huxley College Speaker Series events and two screenings of the film “Return of the River” (with director John Gussman in attendance), one on campus and one at Bellingham’s Pickford Film Center (PFC), The PFC screening of this film is being co-sponsored by the Pickford on Saturday, October 4th at 6:30 pm, with a reception scheduled for the film beginning at 5:30 pm and offered as part of their "Doctober" month-long celebration of documentaries showcased throughout the month of October.


Elwha: A River Reborn was developed by the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture in collaboration with The Seattle Times, Mountaineers Books, and the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe. National touring sponsor is The Snoqualmie Tribe. Sponsorship of the local presentation of Elwha is provided by Western Libraries and Huxley College of the Environment at Western Washington University.

Stay tuned for more news coming soon about other related events and opportunities to learn about Elwha: A River Reborn.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Welcome back, everybody!

Glad you made it back to campus, and hope you had a wonderful summer.  The Western Libraries Sustainability Team invites you to check the Green Shelf blog to see what is going on here related to our favorite subject. (We update once or twice a week.)  And do drop by the Hydration Station in Wilson Library where you can not only fill your water bottle but also read about sustainability action all over campus.  And don't forget the bookshelf there: this quarter all the books and DVDs are about river restoration, in honor of the exhibit on the Elwha, coming in October.  And you can check those materials out!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Monday, August 11, 2014

Western makes the Top 20, Green Energy style


The EPA has listed the highest purchasers of green energy among higher education institutions.  Western came in at #19.  Read all about it here.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Something cheerful for the summer

Is this about sustainability?  I guess so.  And it's pretty.  Thanks to Carol Berry for pointing it out.



Thursday, July 17, 2014

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Natural Hazards Observer

The latest issue of the Natural Hazards Observer is up on the web.   Interesting article about Mexico versus United States on earthquake preparedness.  Guess who's doing better?  Pista: no es los Estados Unidos.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy (sustainable) Fourth of July!

Last year we celebrated Independence Day with a piece about sustainability being patriotic.  Here is a collection of quotes about conservation from U.S. presidents, from the Green Tie, at NAEM.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Sustainability and business... making the connection

Interesting article by Heather Tallis at the Nature Conservancy, arguing that sustainability has to be tied to the economy or corporations and government won't take it seriously.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Bring your own mug, worldwide


Last year Western Libraries sponsored an iniative to encourage people to bring their reusable mug to the library, because a huge chunk of the waste in our cans was paper coffee cups.  Good To Go is a bigger movement of the same kind.  Does that make us trend-setters?



Monday, June 9, 2014

Sustainability Wall Project Officially Complete!


Last week marked the grand opening of the new Wilson Library Sustainability Wall. A collaborative project between Western Libraries, the Office of Sustainability and the AS Environmental Center, this wall provides Western with a central and public location where the campus community can find out about environmental and sustainability events.

 The Sustainability Wall is located near the north entrance to the Wilson Library between Zoe’s bagels and the Tutoring Center. The wall which previously just held a water fountain, an unused radiator, and an AED station (which was relocated around the corner), now incorporates a non-electric water bottle refill station, a Western Sustainability calendar, an environmental and sustainability bulletin board, and a bookshelf highlighting various sustainability themes throughout the academic year.


 The idea for the wall came from a team composed of two students from the Students for Sustainable Water (SSW) club, and two Western Libraries staff. Together, they submitted a Green Energy Fee Grant Program proposal to install a water bottle refilling station and educational kiosk in the Wilson Library to educate campus on the use of reusable water bottles as well as general information on sustainability at Western. 

“Western's commitment towards the environment and sustainability is strongly ingrained in our campus culture, but up until this point it's been difficult to find an accessible resource for students to get involved and stay engaged. I'm excited for ‘The Sustainability Wall’ to be that hub of information, located in the heart of resources at WWU: the Wilson Library,” said Carolyn Bowie, student lead on the project.


 The proposal was funded in the spring of 2013 and installation was completed in the spring quarter of this year. The project team is excited about the opportunity to educate campus on the value of Lake Whatcom as a water resource. A sign above the water bottle refill station includes a stunning aerial photograph of Lake Whatcom and provides information on the value and issues with Lake Whatcom.

Both of the student team members were also involved in the campaign to remove water bottle usage from campus. “This project also serves the need of students to fill their water bottles on campus, especially after our recent victory in ending bottled water sales. I've heard that employees at Zoe's are already directing students to make use of the newly installed refill station!” said Bowie.


The Green Energy Fee (GEF) Grant Program exists to promote experiential learning opportunities and sustainable practices at Western Washington University. The GEF is funded by Western students, managed by the Office of Sustainability, and grants are chosen by the Green Energy Fee Committee, composed of students, staff, and faculty representatives.

 For more information on the Green Energy Fee Grant Program, visit wwu.edu/gef

 (This press release was written by and courtesy of Regan Clover, Green Energy Fee Grant Program Coordinator, Office of Sustainability. Photos by Patrick Schmidt & Tamara Belts; featured in photos are GEF Team Members Rob Lopresti, Clarissa Mansfield, Gerald Kitsis and Carolyn Bowie; Dean of Libraries Mark Greenberg and Campus Sustainability Manager Seth Vidana; group photo of people celebrating the "grand opening" of the project).

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Celebrate the Library's Hydration Station! Friday morning! TEN A.M.

The library now has its very own Hydration Station, thanks to the Green Energy Fee.  Better than that there is an entire wall of information about sustainability at Western, and an assortment of books and videos on related topics.  On this Friday, May 30, at 10:00 we will have an official ribbon cutting to mark the event.  The station is in the Learning Commons, Wilson Library 2, near the Tutoring Center.  We hope to see you there!

FREE showing of the film Dam Nation on campus TONIGHT at WWU


 FREE MOVIE ON CAMPUS! Students for Renewable Energy and Students for Sustainable Water are proud to bring the highly praised movie, DamNation, to campus! It will be on Thursday May 29th in VU552 at 7pm. It's an amazing film about dam removal throughout the United States, including our local Elwha dam.

Friday, May 23, 2014

The Sustainability Round Table

The American Library Association is the major organization for librarians in the U.S.  Their newest forum is the Sustainability Round Table.  You can find them on Facebook too.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Bill McKibben on campus May 17!

Bill McKibben, one of America's best-known environmentalists, will present “350: The Most Important Number in the World,” at 3 p.m. on Saturday, May 17 on the Performing Arts Center Mainstage on the Western Washington University Campus.

If you don't know about him, and why you should want to hear him speak, read all about it here.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Bike to Work and School Day tomorrow!

If you bike (or walk or skateboard or scooter) to Western on Friday be on the lookout for the
Celebration Stations where people will be handing out cookies, coffee, bagels, and assorted bike-related swag to encourage people to find other ways to get to work rather than the dreaded Single Occupancy Vehicle.  This is a great chance to pump up your tires and show your enthusiasm for sustainability!  There will be more than 20 stations around the city, including one in Red Square and one at the Student Recreation Center.

http://www.biketoworkandschoolday.org/

Monday, May 12, 2014

Full Circle Western Sustainability Film Festival is THIS WEEK!


Western Full Circle Sustainability Film Festival starts THIS WEEK (May 12-15) with films being shown at both the Pickford Film Center and at Western Libraries in the Library Presentation Room (WL 164). The film Samsara will open the festival at the Pickford Film Center on 5/12 with a reception at 5pm, and all films in the series will begin at 6pm.

The film festival also presents an opportunity to conect with community members, interest groups, and Western students, faculty and staff to discuss the important topics highlighted by these films. The film events are open to everyone and include a free raffle with prizes from Backcountry Essentials. All films are free with the exception of Samsara, which is free to the first 50 WWU students who present their student ID cards.

Panel discussions will follow each film, and panelists include a variety of students, faculty, staff, and community members. For additional information, check out the Facebook event page, or contact Inanna.Reistad@wwu.edu.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The Sustainability Wall is Here!


Breaking Library NEWS! Located in Wilson 2 across from the Tutoring Center, The Green Energy Fee Grant Program-sponsored project originally conceived in April 2012 is FINALLY nearing completion! 

Western Libraries and Students for Sustainable Water originally joined forces to create a Sustainability Resource Wall + water bottle refilling station. At last our project dreams are almost a reality! Check back soon for the bookshelf to be filled with sustainability-themed library materials...

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Thursday, April 24, 2014

How you personally can keep dangerous chemicals out of the water supply

This Saturday, April 26, there is a national drive to collect unwanted prescription drugs for proper disposal.  You can find the drop-off spot closest to you by going here.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

EARTH WEEK 2014 at WWU

Lots happening this week, and not just on Earth Day (4/22). Just a few reminders about some of the things coming up THIS WEEK!





And don't miss the Students for Sustainable Water Water Bottle Ban Celebration tomorrow from 5 to 6 at the VU MPR. You may just see some of us from the library there celebrating the installation of the new water-bottle refilling station in Wilson Library (with the "sustainability resource wall coming soon!)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

I don't think we have mentioned that among the 300+ databases available through Western Libraries is one specifically to help you find articles about the environment.  Give GreenFILE a try.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

America's Trashiest Humor

Way back in 1970 the brand-new Environmental Protection Agency put out a collection of cartoons about pollution called America The Beautiful: The Nation's Trashiest Humor.  The whole book is available at their website, although it is a bit slow to get through.  (Skip the even numbered pages, which just list the author.)


One of the interesting things about it, is the way some attitudes and vocabulary have changed over the last forty years.  I am not used to hearing the term "ground pollution," for example.  Take a look at the funnies your parents or grandparents were reading...