By: Caroline Roethlisberger
“It’s time to get busy”, stated Molly O’Donnell, Miami University’s student Secretary of Sustainability and Infrastructure, while hosting a “Green Caucus” for sustainability related organizations on Sunday to discuss their goals for the year.
At the meeting, representatives from EcoReps, Greenhawks Media and Green Oxford shared their concerns and agendas to promote sustainability on the Miami University campus and in Oxford.
O’Donnell began with a summary of infrastructure news – specifically noting the arrival of electric scooters to Oxford within the next few weeks and her goal to bring Zipcars to campus.
During the meeting, the group focused their discussion on ideas for Green Week, which occurs the week before Earth Day. O’Donnell wants to begin planning Green Week earlier and use her generous budget to contribute to a successful week. Their goal is to “attract students who don’t already know about sustainability”.
According to president Erika Jeffers, EcoReps will continue to provide the popular green, reusable water bottles for students and intends to focus their agenda on battery and ink cartage waste in dorms. She also mentioned that the group’s past “campus wide trash audit went really well” and that they are planning on executing another in the near future.
Shannon Pressler, president of Green Oxford, said that her organization will continue to present environmental documentaries through their “Green Screen” program, and they want to expand their off-campus recycling campaign. Pressler also mentioned how the group wants to increase advertising for “Meatless Mondays” in dining halls, which are promoted by Green Oxford every Monday in November.
Hoping to work together to promote their green agendas, O’Donnell feels advocating sustainability “would be far more effective if it goes as a unified message around across campus as a single, unified push”.
The group shared concerns about recycling in Miami University buildings and whether the university properly disposes of recyclable waste.
The organizations also expressed concern about move-out trash. Last year, an extra $40,000 and 220 hours of labor were required to dispose of waste from students as they moved out of their dorms, houses and apartments, according to O’Donnell.
O’Donnell wants to convene at least twice a semester with the green groups in order to promote unity among the groups and discuss plans for the year.
Photo by Olivia Bauer.