Bulletin News

SUNY Cortland Plans Sustainability Week 2011


SUNY Cortland will celebrate Sustainability Week 2011 with presentations on climate change, renewable energy and other topics; two film screenings; Earth Day activities and much more.

The week, which began on Saturday, April 16, runs through Friday, April 22. It will culminate with student and staff events commemorating the 41st anniversary of Earth Day.

Sponsored by the Auxiliary Services Corporation, the Campus Recycling Committee and the President’s Office, the week’s events are free and open to the public.

David Goodrich, the former director of climate observations at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), will deliver the week’s keynote address. Goodrich will talk about his upcoming bike trek from Delaware to Oregon, during which he plans to raise awareness of climate change.

Goodrich, who is also former director of the Global Climate Observing System Secretariat in Switzerland, will speak on Monday, April 18, at 7:30 p.m. in Sperry Center, Room 205.

His address, “Pedaling Climate Change: A Bike Trip From Delaware to Oregon, Talking About Climate Change,” will discuss the two-and-a-half month journey he plans to start in May from coast to coast across the U.S.

”A friend of mine, his first reaction was that I’m certifiable,” Goodrich said.

Goodrich will discuss the reasons for his cross-country ride, the trip’s biggest obstacles and the places he is most looking forward to visit. They include the Sand Hills State Park in Kansas, the Snowy Range in Wyoming and the Cascade Range in Oregon.

“I’d like to have some case studies of places of climate change impact,” said Goodrich, who expects to bike between 60 and 80 miles per day. “And I want to see what people’s reactions are to it.”

The College’s sixth annual Community Cleanup Day kicked off the week’s activities on Saturday. It was organized by the City of Cortland, the Cortland Chamber of Commerce, the Cortland Downtown Partnership, the SUNY Cortland Institute for Civic Engagement and SUNY Cortland AmeriCorps.

SUNY Cortland’s other Sustainability Week events include:

• The annual Wilkins Bird Lecture of the Lime Hollow Center for Environment and Culture (LHCEC). John Marzluff, a specialist in wildlife relationships and avian social ecology, will discuss the curious behavior of crows and ravens in a talk titled, “The Surprising Behavior of Crows,”, at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 19, in Sperry Center, Room 205. “Do crows really talk, give gifts and use surfboards?” Marzluff said. “Of course they do, and so much more.” The talk is co-sponsored by SUNY Cortland’s Biology Club.

• “The Environmental Impact of Tobacco: Working Toward a Tobacco-Free Campus.” The SUNY Cortland Tobacco Advisory Committee will present information from 1:40 to 2:40 p.m., on Tuesday, April 19, in Bowers Hall, Room 155.

• “A Not-So Temperate Environment and How It Affects Forests (And People, Too)." Neil Pederson, an associate research scientist at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University, will discuss the impact of climate change from 3 to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, April 19, in Bowers Hall, Room 155.

• Walking tour of the Hoxie Gorge Nature Preserve. Faculty members from the biology and geology departments will guide a tour and a discussion regarding carbon sequestration, biomimicry and nutrient cycling from 4 to 6 p.m.  on Tuesday, April 19. Participants interested in the tour must sign up in advance by contacting the Center for Environmental and Outdoor Education at (607) 753-5488 or by email.

• Sustainable lunch. The free, environmentally friendly lunch will be served from noon to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, April 20, in the Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge. Bill McNamara, the director of ASC Dining Services, will deliver a talk during the lunch. Lunch is limited to the first 65 attendees on a first come, first serve basis.

• “Doubt Mongering in Environmental Issues.”  A SUNY Cortland environmental science seminar class will offer this presentation trom 1:40 to 2:40 p.m. on Wednesday, April 20, in Bowers Hall, Room 155.

• “Local Food Movement.”  Beth Klein, from the Childhood/Early Childhood Education Department, Christine Applegate, manager of the Farmers Market, and Heather Birdsall, from Cornell Cooperative Extension, will discuss how students can get involved from 3 to 4 p.m. on Wednesday, April 20, in Bowers Hall, Room 155..

The Greenhorns. A screening of this documentary film, which explores young people in America’s sustainable food movement, caps Wednesday’s activities. The film begins at 7 p.m. in Sperry Center, Room 105. A discussion with local, young farmers will follow at 9 p.m.

• “Sustainable Heating at SUNY Cortland Using Biomass and Geothermal Energy.” This Earth Week Sandwich Seminar features a talk from SUNY Cortland senior Matthew Rankin about the use of alternative energy sources at the College. He will speak  from noon to 1 p.m. on Thursday, April 21, in Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge.

• “Student Actions for Sustainability.” This presentation by the Environmental Science Club, the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG) and the SUNY Cortland Recreation Association (SCRA), begins at 1:40 p.m. on Thursday, April 21, in Bowers Hall, Room 155.

• “The Technical and Economic Success of Renewable Energy in Central New York.” Melissa Kemp, director of Halco Renewable Energy, will deliver this talk at 3 p.m. on Thursday, April 21, in Bowers Hall, Room 155.

• “The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident: Lessons for U.S. Energy Policy in the Era of Extreme Energy.” Brice Smith, associate professor and Physics Department chair, will deliver this lecture, at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 21, in Sperry Center, Room 105.

Earth Day

A series of commemorative events are on tap for the 41st anniversary of Earth Day on Friday, April 22. The Sustainability Week tent between Bowers Hall and Sperry Center will house most of the day’s activities. They include:

• The Physics and Engineering Club will offer a “Build Your Own Wind Turbine” session under the tent From 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

• College faculty, staff and community members will present “Local Food Resources and Composting Made Easy” from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. under the tent.

• The Environmental Science Club will offer “Earth Café 2050” from noon to 3 p.m.

• NYPRIG will present “The Facts About Fracking” under the tent from noon to 3 p.m.

• The third annual Outdoor Gear Sale and Fender Blender will allow participants to create their own smoothies while peddling a bike. Presented by the SUNY Cortland Recreation Association, the event is scheduled from noon to 5 p.m. at the Community Bike Shop Building next to Lusk Field House.

• An Earth Day open house at the Main Street SUNY Cortland building, 9 Main St., will round out the day’s events. The Center for Gender and Intercultural Studies, Environmental Justice Committee, and Gas Drilling Awareness for Cortland County will be present for the program, which runs from 4:30 to 7 p.m.

The open house includes a screening of My Name is Allegheny County, a film that chronicles a community’s organized resistance to a radioactive waste dump in Allegheny County. Two local activists, Jim Weiss and Paul Yaman, will monitor a discussion after the film.

For more information on Sustainability Week 2011 events, contact Brice Smith at (607) 753-2822 or by email.