How You Can Go Green

We’re halfway through April, meaning that Earth Day is right around the corner! In honor the April 22 holiday, Syracuse University Sustainability Management, NYPIRG ESF/SU and SU Students of Sustainability are hosting Earthfest 2019 on Sunday, April 28 in Thornden Park. There will be live installations, art, local food, music and speakers focusing on sustainability. Best part: it’s completely free and open to the public! Aside from attending this festival, there’s many other ways that students can work to live a more sustainable lifestyle while in college. Although it can be difficult to think about our environmental impact with so much academic pressure, it’s easier than you might think. I rounded up some easy tips on how you can make a difference:

  • Eat less meat. Meat production accounts for 20% of greenhouse gas emissions every year, more than the emissions of ships, planes, cars and all types of transport combined. If everyone went meatless one day a week, it would make a huge impact on the environment. Try out Meatless Monday on campus! 
  • Keep a recycling bin in your room. Most people I’ve seen don’t keep one, but it’s not that difficult to sort your trash if you have a separate bin for all your paper and recyclable items! Every dorm has a trash room with a designated recycling area, so keeping everything sorted is a best practice. It’s a good idea even if you live off campus, too! 
  • Invest in a reusable water bottle. Reusable water bottles are ultimately cheaper than buying a new bottle of water everyday, and as a plus brands like Swell and Hydroflask are making them super cute! Be sure to refill your water bottle at the filling stations across campus. 
  • Don’t throw away old items. Things like clothes, towels and other textiles can usually be donated instead of being thrown away, and someone else will get to enjoy them! Another fun idea is to have a clothing swap with friends where you trade all of the old clothes you don’t want or use anymore. 
  • Keep reusable dishes and silverware in your dorm and/or backpack. It’s ultimately cheaper than buying plastic ones and way less waste.
  • Bring your own cup to your favorite coffee shop. Many people don’t know that People’s Place, Starbucks and SU Food Services will actually put your drink in whatever reusable cup you bring! As an added bonus, some spots usually make the drink bigger.
  • Stop using plastic bags at the grocery store. Coming from California, I was shocked at how many plastic bags grocery stores here in Syracuse use. Bring reusable tote bags to drastically cut back on plastic use.
  • Join a student group supporting sustainability! There are multiple student groups and clubs open to all Syracuse and ESF students looking to make a difference surrounding campus sustainability efforts! Each one focuses on different aspects of sustainability, so you’re sure to find the right fit. 

For more tips on how you can be more green, visit the Sustainability Management website.

Written by Carina Coestad ’22, College of Visual and Performing Arts