Sustainability... On Campus

Get the 411 on QGIS

Conceptual keyboard - GIS (blue key)Learn the ABCs of using QGIS — in this case, to map tree cover, land use and similar data — in an Aug. 17 workshop in Mansfield. QGIS is a free and open-source geographic information system, or GIS. It works on operating systems including Mac OS X, Linux, Unix and Microsoft Windows. Sponsoring the event is CFAES’s Ohio Woodland Stewards program. Read more.

Oceans awash: Why ‘biodegradable plastic’ often isn’t

A new report from the United Nations “finds that biodegradable plastics, commonly found in plastic bags and bottles, degrade at extremely slow rates,” according to a story in the Christian Science Monitor. CFAES scientist Fred Michel is quoted in the story among others. The issue relates to the growing amount of plastic polluting our oceans. The authors of the report, according to the UK’s Guardian newspaper, wrote: “There is a moral argument that we should not allow the ocean to become further polluted with plastic waste, and that marine littering should be considered a ‘common concern of humankind.’”

Seeking ‘students with a passion for sustainability and change’

CFAES’s Environment, Economy, Development and Sustainability major, says faculty member Sathya Gopalakrishman, teaches “students with a passion for sustainability and change to be drivers or agents of this change in the future.” Want to be one of them? Watch the video above.

Is water quality trading a solution?

Could water quality trading help solve Ohio’s nutrient issues? Farm and Dairy’s Chris Kick has the story, reporting on the recent joint meeting of the Water Quality Taskforce and the Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee of the County Commissioners Association of Ohio. The meeting was at OARDC in Wooster, which is CFAES’s research arm, and had several speakers from CFAES.

Helping Mr. Toad come home

Image of American toad 2You’re in luck — and being helpful — if your land has a wetland, says CFAES Wildlife Specialist Marne Titchenell. “Wetlands are rare habitats that many plants and animals depend on. Landowners who are willing to dedicate a portion of their land to a wetland are providing some much-needed homes for wildlife.” Learn more in a workshop she’s co-teaching June 3.

CFAES names new acting dean

Image of Lonnie KingCFAES welcomes Lonnie J. King, who previously has been dean of Ohio State’s College of Veterinary Medicine, as its new acting dean effective May 15. King replaces Ron Hendrick, who’s leaving in June to become dean of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at Michigan State. Read the story.

Buckeyes get green gold

Image of girl holding trophyOhio State has achieved a Gold rating from the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS). The rating places the university among the top tier of national and international colleges and universities, according to the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. Read the full story.

How was the Wooster green fair?

Green fair image 1

Over 1,500 people came to last month’s Scarlet, Gray and Green Fair at CFAES’s research arm, OARDC in Wooster, and over 300 vehicles visited the fair’s drive-through recycling station.
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Register for Ohio Environmental Leaders Institute

Registration is open for CFAES’s 2016 Ohio Environmental Leaders Institute. The program is for environmental, natural resource and sustainability professionals and volunteers who lead or aspire to lead collaborative processes to achieve more sustainable organizations, businesses and communities.

This year’s program, says co-organizer Joe Bonnell of CFAES’s School of Environment and Natural Resources, will focus on “sustainable infrastructure as a topic area, but, as always, the purpose of the program is to build capacity in Ohio to engage in constructive dialogue and build collaborative partnerships across sectors and disciplines to address complex environmental and natural resource issues.”

Get details and register here.

Toot our horn: Ohio State is No. 1 in Big Ten green power use

Image of Ohio State marching band 2The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has recognized Ohio State as an Individual Conference Champion in the 2015-16 College & University Green Power Challenge for using more green power than any other Big Ten school. Read more …