AASHE Webinar: Higher Education & COP 15

Webinar: Higher Education and COP15: What Happened, and Now What?

On April 5, 3-4 pm EDT

Registration is free, but you must register in advance
Tune in to an engaging webinar sponsored by AASHE on the implications for higher education from the 2009 U.N. Climate Change Conference and 15th “Conference of the Parties” (COP 15). Learn about the proceedings and takeaways from an interdisciplinary team of Dickinson College students and staff who attended the climate negotiations as part of a ‘Kyoto to Copenhagen’ course. The students and their instructor will discuss how higher education can show climate leadership, both as individuals (professors, administrators, students) and as an industry, and the importance of using our success in climate change reporting (GHG inventories) and emissions reductions plans to strengthen national and international progress on these issues. All are invited to attend this important event. For more information contact Niles Barnes, webinar moderator and AASHE Projects Coordinator, at niles@aashe.org or 859.940.2888.

P.S.  Save the Date –  AASHE 2010: Campus Initiatives to Catalyze a Just and Sustainable World on October 10-12, in Denver, CO

Academic Library Article

Academic Librarians – be sure to read the article in March 2010 College and Research Libraries journal by Maria Anna Jankowska and James W. Marcum called Sustainability Challenge for Academic Libraries: Planning for the Future

There is growing concern that a variety of factors threaten the sustainability of academic libraries: developing and preserving print and digital collections, supplying and supporting rapidly changing technological and networking infrastructure, providing free services, maintaining growing costs of library buildings, and lowering libraries’ ecological footprint. This paper discusses the multidimensional issues of sustainability in academic libraries and identifies needs for designing an integrated framework for sustainable strategies in academic libraries. Additionally, the paper presents a synthesis of existing literature on the increasingly popular topic of “green libraries” and prepares a background toward developing a framework for sustainable strategies in academic libraries.

Resource: State Blogs on Environmental Issues

Sustainablog has a post  listing 5 state’s  blogs on environmental issues. Does your state have one? a worthy resource to promote for your patrons and staff if so; if not, bug your local or state government to get one up!


This morning NPR did part 1 of a 3 part series called The End Of 9-to-5: When Work Time Is Anytime by Jennifer Ludden. Heavy traffic, long commutes to sit in cubicles, and needing to save money, one agency (Human Services and Public Health Department of Hennepin County, in Minneapolis, MN) started a practice called ROWE (results-only work environment) = as long as the work gets done on time, people can work from wherever and whenever.  Ending long commutes with less cars on the road and eliminating the need to widen roads (and its GREENer), happier people b/c they can spend more time with their families or doing things they like, has ended up with money savings and increased productivity.  When people are home, working,  they get work done in chunks of time, take breaks, go back and work….  when they are physically at work from 9-5, they aren’t working non stop, but pausing for chats, breaks, gossip session, etc and less efficient overall getting things done.  (speaking personally from experience working in both areana, this is so true!)

Can your library analyze its workflows and processes to allow flexibility with employees?  For synchronous needs, meetings can be held virtually online or instant messaging can be used to chat.  People will have to be in the physical building to serve the public – just as they are in this NPR story example – but does everyone have to be there every day from 9-5pm? probably not.   Save space, save money (on facility expenses), have happier employees, and effective productivity  through willingness to analyze your processes, look at things with a fresh perspective, and change. And you’ll be GREENer too!

Conference Bag Exchange idea

From TFOE listserv by Jonathan Betz-Zall

Saw this in an online newsletter from King County WA:
CONFERENCE BAG CONTEST ENCOURAGES REUSE, RECYCLING AND FUN – by Donna Seegmueller, Ecology librarian, Administrative Services, Lacey I attended a conference workshop recently about “copyright in the electronic age,” sponsored by the Pacific Northwest Chapter/Medical Library Association (PNC/MLA). Copyright, as a legal concern, is based in a 1709 English law statute. It has become a hot, then hotter topic, with each advance in technology (from player pianos, to photocopy machines, to electronic media). Librarians are always interested in this topic, so it’s not unusual to include copyright as part of a conference. What was unusual about this conference was the bag contest that was a part of it. PNC/MLA event planners chose not to distribute new conference bags this year. Instead, they came up with the idea of a bag contest. Attendees were asked to check the backs of our closets for old conference bags and bring them to the meeting. We could bring as many bags as we’d collected at other meetings and events. We were encouraged to re-use one of ours, or swap with a friend for one more appealing. And, we could donate bags to those folks who hadn’t been around long enough to have a closet full of bags. Only canvas or fabric bags were eligible (no plastic shopping bags allowed). This event was held in Seattle, after all. Winners of the contest included the oldest bag — from a meeting held in Portland in 1987 — to one that traveled the furthest, from South Africa. So, if you need an idea for your next conference or workshop, try a bag contest. PNC/MLA conference planners saved money, encouraged recycling, and provided attendees with an educational and entertaining event.

Ways to use old books

This web site from Online Colleges lists 80 awesomely,  creative ideas for reusing – instead of just discarding – old books. Ideas are categorize into:  around the house (yoga block or a book safe – cut hole in center), at work/school (pen holder or book shelf), decorating (a lamp or decoupage tabletop), reusing the pages (wrapping paper, mulch, kitty litter), for crafts (make a gift bag or greeting cards), for kids (leaf press or paper mache), for clothing/jewelry  (make a handbag or brooch) and more.

Thanks Alliance Library System’s Going Green Blog for their post that brought this site to my attention!

Higher Ed Upcoming Workshops & Events

March 17 & April 14, 2010; 1 – 2:30pm (Eastern)
Webinar Series: Educating Students for a Green Economy (cost: $15-30)

March 18, 2010, 12:00-1:30 pm
DOE Webinar:Getting to Net Zero Today Through a Performance-Based Design/Build Process (free)

March 21-23, 2010
Smart and Sustainable Campuses Conference
( cost: $200-$500)
The Inn & Conference Center, University of Maryland University College, MD

March 22-23, 2010
Strategies for Adaptation Across the Sustainability Curriculum
(Free/limited space)
Wake Forest University; Winston-Salem, NC

April 23, 1 – 2:30pm & April 28, 1 – 2:30pm (eastern) 2010
Webinar Series – Green Jobs Programming On Campus? (cost: $295 each)

May 17 – 19, 2010
Taking Root: 5th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference (cost: $200-280)
Detroit, MI

June 3 – 4, 2010
AASHE’s Sustainability Across the Curriculum Leadership Workshop (cost: $420-485)
San Diego State University; San Diego, CA