Dec. 9, 2010

Reserve your seat at the campus sustainability symposium in February

by Anne Krapfl

Symposium on Sustainability
ISU Memorial Union

  • Monday, Feb. 21 (2-5 p.m.)
  • Tuesday, Feb. 22 (8 a.m.-1:30 p.m.)

Online registration is open for Iowa State's third annual symposium on sustainability, Feb. 21-22, 2011, in the Memorial Union. Registration is free for all members of the university community and includes a Tuesday lunch that features local and organic foods. The event is intended to share information about successful initiatives on campus and identify other needs -- as well as collaborative options for addressing them.

Two-day format

To enable more people to attend, symposium organizers structured this year's event as two half-day sessions (Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning), with public lectures both Monday and Tuesday evenings.

Monday afternoon will feature three visioning/work sessions organized according to participants: faculty, staff and students. Peers will lead each group in discussion of topics most relevant and of interest to that group. The sessions conclude with an hour of summary and the opportunity to explore shared interests.

Tuesday events include the keynote address, highlights of some faculty research on sustainability innovations and current projects by facilities operations, a Live Green! progress report by campus sustainability director Merry Rankin, a summary report of the Monday discussions and the awards luncheon. Details about the schedule are posted online.

Online participation in the symposium, which was piloted last year, will not be offered this year.

Joining symposium attendees this year to provide the keynote talk is Jerome Ringo, a 20-year veteran of the petrochemical industry who now advocates for clean energy and environmental justice. Ringo currently serves as senior executive for global strategies for Green Port, a private company that focuses on establishing sustainable "green" ports around the world. Ringo took part in the United States' 1998 global warming treaty negotiations in Kyoto, Japan, and appeared in the 2006 award-winning documentary An Inconvenient Truth. Ringo also will give a public lecture at 8 p.m. Monday in the Memorial Union Great Hall.

Tuesday evening's public lecture (8 p.m., MU Sun Room) will be by Kim Jordan, CEO and co-founder (with her husband, Jeff Lebesch) of New Belgium Brewing, Fort Collins, Colo., the makers of Fat Tire beer. Now the third-largest craft brewer in the country, New Belgium is recognized for its commitment to the environment and its progressive business practices.

Call for posters

Monday events will include a poster session and reception prior to the public lecture. Posters will remain in the Memorial Union Great Hall throughout the symposium. Organizers encourage posters that highlight all types of campus sustainability initiatives, including research, facilities/operations, administration, student organizations, and community or personal initiatives. The deadline to submit an abstract for consideration is Jan. 21; all those submitting abstracts will be contacted by Feb. 1. Guidelines for the posters are online.

Call for award nominations

Launched at last year's symposium, the President's Live Green Excellence Awards recognize faculty, staff and students who are making an impact on campus sustainability by building awareness and interest in green initiatives in teaching, research, outreach and operations. Excellence Award recipients last year were ISU Dining, the GreenHouse (student) Group in the residence system and the Solar Decathlon team. Nominations for the 2011 awards will open Dec. 15; self-nominations are encouraged.