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SMEAC to host Earth Week events

KRYSTINA HARCOURT | Monday, April 19, 2010

The Saint Mary’s Environmental Action Coalition (SMEAC) will be hosting a series of events and projects celebrating Earth Week, beginning today, in honor of environmental activism.

“We have been planning Earth Week for quite a few months now and have worked really hard to put together some great events and activities,” SMEAC board member Ellen Huelsmann said. “Our goal is to make the environment fun and I’m really looking forward to all the great stuff we have planned.”

The week’s events begin tonight at 5 p.m. with kickball and tie-dying on Library Green.
“It’s a way for us to get people outside and enjoying the warm weather,” SMEAC head of public relations Jamie Thordsen said.

Participants are allowed to bring their own items to tie-dye.

“People have brought socks, jackets and even sports bras,” she said. 

On Tuesday, students can sign a pledge to care for a plant from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Student Center, and on Wednesday, SMEAC will organize the annual “Weight your Waste” event, which measures how much food students waste in the dining hall.

“We simply take all the food and liquids left on the trays when students go to place them on the tray belt and put them in big containers,” Thordsen said.

The highlight for SMEAC during the week will be Thursday’s Earth Day Student Panel. They have planned for each member to speak on a topic related to raise awareness about the environment.

Huelsmann, who will be talking about “The Importance of Biodiversity,” will be one of nine speakers on the panel. Topics that will be discussed include “Business Going Green,” “Your Carbon Footprint” and “Go Green by Eating Green.”

“This panel is simply [about] the importance of environment and how we all have a responsibility as members of this planet to protect and preserve it in any way we can,” Huelsmann said.

On Friday, SMEAC is organizing an invasive species clean up in the Saint Mary’s Nature Area to help eradicate garlic mustard plants.

SMEAC will also be teaming up with the dining hall staff to help limit environmental impact. Trays and straws will be unavailable all week in order to limit waste, and students can bring water bottles with them into the dining hall.

“We really want the students to be able to participate in our celebration of the Earth and we are hoping that they get a lot out of everything we have planned,” Huelsmann said.