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Feb. 13, 2009

Symposium participants propose to-do list for campus sustainability

by Diana Pounds

In the concluding session of the Symposium on Enhancing Sustainability Feb. 10, more than 200 people shared ideas on how to create a more sustainable Iowa State. Those who were unable to attend are invited to send ideas to Leopold Center director Jerry DeWitt,

Here are some ideas generated by symposium attendees:

  • Promote biking by keeping campus and city bike paths clear year-round
  • Replace destroyed campus green space with twice as much somewhere else
  • Conserve water by collecting parking lot runoff and installing dual-flush toilets
  • Create a policy on digital records (for example, PDFs rather than printed annual reports)
  • Use timers and reminder stickers to ensure that people turn off computers, printers and other equipment
  • Provide incentives for sustainable practices
  • Adopt Berea College president Larry Shinn's "living upstream" philosophy
  • Create an online calendar of green activities on campus
  • Provide sustainability information to students, faculty and staff during orientation
  • Integrate sustainability into courses
  • Unplug "phantom power" devices, like idle cell phone chargers
  • Make recycling easier -- let people know how and where to recycle, and provide convenient access
  • Develop a checklist of sustainability actions at beginner, interim and advanced levels
  • Compile best practices on the Live Green! web site
  • Make sustainable building practices a priority
  • Develop sustainable purchasing practices
  • Involve ISU Foundation in creating a sustainability donor track
  • Have a green Veishea theme
  • Give sustainability awards to student organizations, offices and individuals

Catch the symposium online

If you missed the symposium, you can catch Tuesday's action at these sites:


If you were unable to attend the Symposium on Enhancing Sustainability Feb. 10 but have ideas on how to create a more sustainable Iowa State, send them to Jerry DeWitt,