Institute for Sustainable Development

This year's award is a self-contained eco system, Eco Sphere...

William Ruckelshaus
Business Week
June 18, 1990


Our Sustainable Future - CSU, Chico

2014 Higher Ed Greenie Award VOTING

The annual This Way to Sustainability Conference “Greenie Awards” this year will recognize student groups from north state colleges and universities. These student groups will be showing off their projects on Thursday, March 6th from 8-1 in the BMU Auditorium. Vote onsite starting at NOON or via the links below until 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, and first, second and third place winners will be announced on Friday, March 7th after the Local Lunch in the BMU Auditorium. Of the following student groups nominated, click on the link below each to nominate the student group you feel most deserving of the award this year.
(Only ONE Vote per Registered Participant)

Nominated Student Groups:

The Alternative Transportation Group (CSU, Chico)
California Student Sustainability Coalition (CSU, Chico)
The Environmental Advocates of CLIC (CSU, Chico)
The Environmental Affairs Council (CSU, Chico)
Nelson's Green Aquaphonics (Sacramento State)
Net Impact (CSU, Chico)
PowerSave Campus
Sustainable Consultations of Office Practices (SCOOP)

Sustainable Engineering and Environmental Health for Development (SEEHD, CSU, Chico)

The Alternative Transportation Group (CSU, Chico)
The Alternative Transportation Group
works hard to encourage students, faculty and staff to find alternative, more environmentally friendly methods of transportation. We do this by promoting Zimride, a ride sharing service and Zipcar, which allows the user access to a car when they need it instead of bringing their car to Chico. We also encourage the use of human legs as transportation! This means walking, biking or skating instead of driving. One of our recent accomplishments was successfully receiving funding for four different bike repair stations on campus. The first, which was installed this past fall, was heavily used and helped the campus population with its tire pump and bike repair tools. Another accomplishment was receiving $15,000 from SFAC to create a private Zimride domain available to Chico State students, faculty and staff, which is only accessible to our network. Our promotional push of Zimride this past Thanksgiving resulted in the month with the second highest number of new users that Chico has seen in the past three years. We also encourage bike safety and collaborated with SAVE for their 'bike safety event' this past fall. This spring we will be launching our 'benefits for biking' campaign in which students will receive a coupon for a coffee by showing persistence of biking through inconvenient weather. Our main objective is to support the campus wide initiative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and we use many outlets to try and make this mission come to light.
Vote for The Alternative Transportation Group

California Student Sustainability Coalition (CSU, Chico)
The mission of the California Student Sustainability Coalition is to unite and empower California’s community of higher education to collaboratively and nonviolently transform ourselves and our institutions based on our inherent social, economic, and ecological responsibilities. In 2012 Butte College and CSU, Chico Joined forces, bringing activism off the campus and into the community. Over the past few years the group has hosted 2 Statewide Convergence, bringing over 300 student leaders together from across the state for networking, leadership training, and peer lead workshops. We have since then been active on our campuses, and state wide, supporting a hydraulic fracking moratorium, divesting our campuses from fossil fuels, and establishing a Green Initiative Fund at CSU, Chico. Our strength comes by working together, sharing best practices, and by empowering those around us to carry on the effort. Above all else we are a network and a coalition of individuals with diverse interests and skills,yet what unites us is our vision of a socially, environmentally and economically just world. We bridge generations, campuses, ideologies, and movements to create a unified front to fight our collective battles.
Vote for the California Student Sustainability Coalition

The Environmental Advocates at CLIC (CSU, Chico)
Purchasing food is a huge choice, and can have a huge impact on civil rights issues. Purchasing free trade items is the equivalent of providing fair wages to farmers or workers who would otherwise be underpaid. You are choosing quality products with assurance, that are grown with dedication, purpose and equality. Fair trade goods improve our environment, in that, commercial purchasers must receive and charge fair prices for whatever they purchase in bulk. This also results in less packaging, which is an environmental improvement. Products commonly associated with this arrangement include; hemp, cotton, fruit, Shea butter, coffee and chocolate.
Vote for The Environmental Advocates at CLIC

The Environmental Affairs Council (CSU, Chico)
The Environmental Affairs Council identifies areas of sustainability on the Chico State Campus and provides recommendations to the University, or passes policy through the Associated Students. Currently the council has drafted a policy and started a campaign to as the University to remove the money that they have invested in largest 200 oil, coal and gas companies over the next 5 years. It is wrong for an institution of higher learning that values sustainability to be profiting from climate change.
Vote for The Environmental Affairs Council

Nelson's Green Aquaponics (Sacramento State)
The project is focused on promoting sustainability mainly in urban areas, where space is very limited. The system is created based on the already existing concept with a little modification by combining two different Aquaponic systems to create an A frame Deep Water Culture Column (ADWCC) Made with mostly recycled materials, it can grow majority of vegetables (more than three times of regular planter bed) with twice the yield, 10% water usage compared to traditional farming with only a footprint of 4 x 6 feet. This system mimics nature by creating necessary conditions of a symbiotic relationship between fish and vegetables, there by reducing the added cost of fertilizers and intensive equipment used in Farming industry.
Vote for Nelson's Green Aquaponics

Net Impact (CSU, Chico)
Speaker Series allowed our members to network and gain education on local businesses. This project enabled our group to bring in representatives from large local business for a dinner and discussion. Demonstration on this project consisted of opportunities to network and interview guest with open questions. Members implemented research and community involvement in order to make this project happen.
Vote for Net Impact

PowerSave Campus (CSU, Chico)
Chico State’s PowerSave Campus program has continuously succeeded in implementing projects that generate actual energy savings, encourage academic infusion of sustainability concepts, and develop the green workforce.
Recent projects range from vending machine audits and excess refrigeration reduction, to green career panels and coordinating the Campus Conservation Nationals competition. For one project in particular, we focused our attention to improve an area on campus in need. We decided to target the least energy efficient building on campus, reduce our carbon footprint, and help take another step toward a sustainable campus.
Butte Station is a primary fixture on the campus community, and a hub for students’ daily dietary needs. We believe it will provide a project the visibility that’s needed to extend the view of what sustainability looks like.
The building has multiple open refrigeration appliances running 24/7. The current setup for these machines requires constant refrigeration and energy is wasted cooling the surrounding environment and not just the products for which it is intended. In an effort to provide a solution to this issue, we worked with AS Dining Services to develop a plan that will reduce the amount of energy wasted, and yet minimize cost and disturbance to the store's operations.
The solution lies with insulating nightshades that will be used to retain refrigerated air within the product space over night, allowing the compressor to shut off periodically and conserve energy. From an economic perspective, the nightshades are relatively inexpensive, would save thousands of dollars in energy costs each year, and would have a short pay-back period. The resources for this project would come from both PowerSave, AS Dining, and aim to be replenished by PG&E rebate opportunities. It will be a huge improvement for the least energy efficient building on campus.
Vote for PowerSave Campus (Chico)

Sustainable Consultations of Office Practices (SCOOP - CSU, Chico)
SCOOP is a student organization working with offices on campus to assess current office practices and make recommendations for improvements. This student project began in 2007 with students performing office energy audits and comprehensive sustainability consultations. Since then SCOOP has revamped its program by working with a number of departments on campus in order to attain results in areas outside of SCOOP’s jurisdiction. SCOOP provides sustainable consultations to all campus departments and offices to learn and take charge in new “sustainability” techniques to start saving money and energy. The process consists of student consultants working with an office representative to assess the sustainable practices an office is already implementing and where practices can be improved. Sustainable practices we look for can be found on our new “tool”, which went into action for the first time last semester, after countless hours and many revisions. Four offices have completed the Level 1 criteria for certification with our new tool and over 40 offices have a Level 1 or above with our previous certification system. The categories of change are Energy, Procurement, Waste/Recycling, Transportation, and Employee Health and Wellness. In the past SCOOP has worked on the Wildcat Sustainability Showdown and always participates in Campus Sustainability Day and Earth Week. SCOOP has been contacted by other universities looking to replicate the organization, and we would love to see our ideas spreading through other campuses. SCOOP was the recipient of the 2013 Greenie Award for our successful efforts toward a sustainable future.
Vote for SCOOP

Sustainable Engineering and Environmental Health for Development (SEEHD, CSU, Chico)
SEEHD, in partnership with developing communities, provides economical engineering and sustainable environmental health solutions in the areas of water supply, sanitation, energy, and shelter. SEEHD offers students, from all disciplines of engineering and environmental health, the opportunity to work together on international projects. These projects provide students with exposure to other cultures, insights into sustainable engineering design, and an opportunity to improve public health. Working on projects abroad enables students to develop into internationally-responsible professionals who are able to collaborate with different cultures in order to develop sustainable and sanitary solutions within the means of the community's available resources. The Lake Atitlán project: Lake Atitlán in Sololá, Guatemala, is undergoing rapid water quality degradation as a result of the ongoing discharge of the wastewater from the basin’s population (>250,000) into the lake. This is a direct threat to the ecology of the lake, to public health, and to the future economic stability of the region. This project establishes and evaluates wastewater management alternatives for the mitigation of this threat. After initial assessment of all potential alternatives, two options were considered feasible: (1) use of mechanical wastewater treatment with tertiary treatment processes for nutrient removal (2) wastewater export out of the basin. A design feasibility study was conducted leading to the recommendation of wastewater export, treatment in a centralized wastewater stabilization pond system, and reuse of the effluent for irrigation (similar to what they do in Lake Tahoe). This alternative for wastewater management in the Lake Atitlán basin would preserve the aquatic ecosystem of the lake by preventing further loading of nutrients from wastewater discharge and it would decrease public health concerns associated with pathogenic loading from wastewater discharge. In turn, wastewater export would help the indigenous people of Lake Atitlán sustain their way of life.
Vote for SEEHD

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