A blog about sustainability efforts and the community garden at Williston

Earth Day This Wednesday the 22nd!

This Wednesday, April 22 is this year’s Earth day! To get Williston in the sustainable spirit we are planning a hike, showed the Lorax this past Sunday, and will be encouraging students to wear green on Earth day. We are also hoping to give students a way to show off their sustainable accomplishments with the hashtag #willyearthday2015. If you and your friends recycle, pick up trash or do anything else that is sustainable (like using the new water bottle filling stations on campus) you can use the hashtag and tweet it at iWilliston!

Earth Day falls on April 22 every year, and is widely considered the anniversary of the beginning of the modern environmental movement in 1970. Last year for Earth Day we had also had a hike up Mt. Tom, and did some work in the garden, let’s make this year’s Earth Day even better!

Hope you all stay green (and blue) on Earth Day!

Alex Fay

Ort Report: Week 2

This last Thursday, the 9th, we had collected and weighed our second Ort report, aside from the baseline in February. We collected 115 pounds of food waste, compared to our baseline which weighed in at around 76.5 pounds. It was also more waste than the previous week, which totaled in at 102 pounds.

Let’s try harder to cut down on leaving excess scraps by thinking about how much food we want and are able to eat. Being trayless in the dining hall helps reduce the amount of food students waste, and we aim to meet our goal to have under 50 pounds of waste. This amount was the minimum wasted from 2014, so we need to improve our habits and try again this week.

An Ort Report will be taken this Thursday, so keep your eyes peeled, and stay green!

Ort Report: Week 1

This past Thursday April 2nd, marks the first Ort Report of this trimester, after we weighed and recorded the baseline in February. Many students enthusiastically embraced the Ort report, and they proudly boasted their lack of food waste. Great job guys! This week however we weighed and recorded seven full five-gallon buckets of food waste, totaling about 102 pounds of waste total. This waste was about 25.5 pounds above our baseline. Some of the extra weight may be due to the large amount of inedible corn cobs that were left over from lunch, but we still have room for improvement.

Now that the first Ort Report of the trimester is complete, we hope that students will actively think about food waste on their mind as the weeks continue. We aim to beat our minimum waste from last year of 50 pounds. Let’s make this week’s Ort Report an anomaly and start a downward trend of food waste as the trimester continues.

Keep an eye open for the Ort report and help do your part to keep our world Green and Blue!

Ort Report: Baseline

March 26th, 2015


Now that the Green Cup Challenge is over, Williston’s Sustainable Life Club is starting the annual Ort Report on campus! This past Thursday, February 26, students were asked to place all of their food waste into five-gallon buckets in order for them to be weighed. With almost 6 full buckets containing items from napkins, food, and liquids, the average totaled to about 76.5 lbs! Compared to the baseline of last year, 98 lbs, this is a total 21.5 lbs lighter.

Throughout the weeks to come after Spring Break, we hope that students are more conscious about what they are wasting during their mealtimes. Hopefully, with Ort Reports being taken, we will see a downward trend this year! Last year’s minimum amount of waste was 50 lbs, we hope to beat that marking point during the spring of 2015 and continue reducing our food waste.

Keep an eye out for the Ort Report!

Diversity Workshop

Think Differently: Sharing Sustainable Perspectives

On February 20th, during the Diversity Symposium, the Sustainability Club ran a fun, interactive workshop for several students. The workshop included demonstrations about clean water, usable land top soil, over fishing and resources, and aquaculture.  Our main goal was to introduce and educate the students about sustainability and its environmental, cultural, and economic viewpoints through different activities. Some of the activities asked students for their input of what sustainability was and how they could make a difference. Some of the responses are below.

What does sustainability mean?

  1. “Sustainability is the action where something will never diminish and will always be available”
  2. “Sustainability means having enough resources and using them smartly so they will last”
  3. “Sustainability: keeping a healthy earth/ecosystem for all living things”
  4. “Sustainability is the efficient and responsible usage of our resources in a way that also preserves the beauty of Nature”
  5. “In my perspective sustainability means to protect the environment, decrease water consumption, and use more efficient energy”
  6. “To  keep the environment a nice place to live in”
  7. “The preservation and salvation of keeping the Earth green”
  8. “Sustainability means to have sustainable life such as enough resources to live”

How can we make an impact in our community?

  1. “By encouraging a sustainable approach to the campus ecosystem”
  2. “Make sure we recycle correctly”
  3. “Use less water, don’t litter, use less energy. Recycle.”
  4. “Could make rules so we don’t run out of stuff”
  5. “We could try to presrve animals and plants better. Not use pesticides. Limit the usage of non-renewable resources”
  6. “Spread awareness and reduce, reuse, recycle.”
  7. “We need to let everybody know the importance of being a sustainable society, and in need to spread out the idea of saving resources”
  8. “Educate people in our community about environmental impacts”

The responses were nice to use when addressing how sustainability has an important economic and cultural aspect besides the most popular environmental one. This was addressed in our case study of aquaculture from a small  farm. As the weeks continue, the club hopes to educate more students about their impact in the community and globally. Keep an eye out for the Ort Report that will be addressing Food waste in the weeks to come!