Composting (pizza boxes) in the Commons

My university library – the campus, the city too – does composting, which includes pizza boxes! Background: The library started a small composting project in the staff lounge about a year ago with fabulous results  of over 469 Gallons Composted (plus 110 pizza boxes) since March 31, 2014!  The success of this project lead us to consider composting library wide – with our users.Other libraries have initiated similar ideas (DU libraries, JHU Libraries)

Before we began, a waste audit was conducted this spring by our sustainability/recycling folks on campus in our busiest area, the Learning Commons, and  during the end of “dead week” and finals, when the traffic normally doubles. The results of this audit showed the recyclable/compostable materials made up 47% (by weight) and compostable materials alone made up 34% (by weight) of the waste stream that day. But before we launch into a full-blown composting program we started with a small a pilot project in the Learning Commons area, just to collect and compost PIZZA BOXES for that last week of the term. We posted signs around the library to bring them to the Info Desk. In the end we collected 72 boxes total! Next… can we do composting in the Learning Commons all term? We will start with a pilot this summer…. stay tuned!

copostingpizza

 

crafty upcycling projects for your library

Sharing some fun ideas to do with teens or adults especially if you are creating a makerspace environment in your library:

 

 

 

 

Free Watershed Academy Webinar 11/28/12

Free Watershed Academy Webinar on “How’s My Waterway? and Other Water Quality Apps” on Nov. 28, 2012 at 1-3pm EST

 

The US EPA is promoting their new apps and website which will  let users quickly learn about waterways in the USA, condition of thousands of lakes, rivers and streams  from their smart phone, tablet or desktop computer:   http://www.epa.gov/mywaterway    The app  uses mobile device locations or a user-entered zip code/city name  to send information on their local quality of water bodies. Way cool!    The webinar will also discussion the SwinGuide  (find a close beach and get beach status information!) and the RiverView (share pictures of your favorite river and share information on its condition) – two other apps you must check out and promote as well!

Note from their website:  “This app was released on the 40th anniversary of the Clean Water Act, which Congress enacted on October 18, 1972, giving citizens a special role in caring for the nation’s water resources. Forty years later, EPA is providing citizens with a technology-based tool to expand that stewardship.”

Register for this webinar, view archived webinas or find out more!

 

NBII website to be taken offline!

Not such good news,  but important to let you know so you can preserve some of the links:  

Due to federal budget cuts,  the National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII) website at http://www.nbii.gov/portal/server.pt/community/nbii_home/236 will be removed from the Web on January 15, 2012 .  Library of Congress/Web Archiving Team  says that as part of a collaborative web archive project to archive U.S. Federal Government Websites, this site has been crawled by the Internet Archive as a part of that project (though not publicly accessible yet but hopefully it has been preserved.) 

Thanks Maria Anna Jankowska for bringing this to my attention!

Creative Upcycling Decoration Ideas

Thinking about next years holiday already? Maybe not but you could start now reusing old  or broken decorations or natural items found around your yard. Get creative in the new year and have fun – at your school or public library,  host a hands-on program for people to make upcycled/recycled holiday decorations   You can even put out a table of goodies, welcoming back college kids to the library, allowing them to get creative and enjoy being back on campus.

The How Do I Recycle This?  blog offered a great  ideas in 2010 (button wreathsorigami decorationstin stars, star lights, and other fabulous ideas.) and now offers more for end of 2011 like old newspaper ball ornaments, ornaments from old sweaters, Christmas trees from twigs, paper chains from old maps, and old newspaper wreaths.

 

Trees made of books!

Christmas tree of Books at the University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Poland

Always enjoy seeing libraries using discarded books to create art, purses, or  furniture! Go University of Warmia and Mazury of Olsztyn, Poland (and a Wesolych Swiat Bozego Narodzenia  – a shout out to my ancestors in Poland!) for their lovely giant Christmas tree created from books. See the writeup in American Libraries or visit their website for more info and videos.  Check out more trees made from books from my past blog posts too!

AASHE 2011 Conference Presentation Materials Now Available

AASHE (Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education) now has available all of the conference posters, panels and presentations from 2011 conference in Pittsburgh last October and the 2010 in Denver. The conference materials are in one searchable database, searched by conference year, category, organization, session type and keyword.   Blog posts, photos and videos can also be found on the AASHE conference website.

Green Info Commons @UNB

The University of New Brunswick in Saint Johns (Canada) created a new commons that is environmentally friendly, LEED  silver certified. The Hans W. Klohn Commons opened in Fall 2011 and includes the library, the student tech center, the writing center, the math/science help center and a commons cafe – a true campus information commons! The space includes lots of natural and LED lighting, reuse of rainwater, geothermal technologies, and elevators that actually produces power when used back into the building.  Find out more about the space through these videos: