Green is the New Orange

My university held an event yesterday evening with the purpose to educate students and promote a number of “go green” initiatives on campus.

In our sustainability class, we talked about how to effectively initiate making a difference. Does it really matter if one person recycles? Should I harp on my roommate for leaving her diet coke bottles in the trash can? Is it worth it to take the stairs?
I think everyone could agree that a difference is only made when a movement starts. UT is taking strides to make going green a campus-wide activity, something for the whole student body to rally around. And they are making it pretty darn easy.

Here are a few of the initiatives that stood out to me:

One program that I currently take advantage of is “The Mug Project.” At almost all coffee/beverage retailers on campus you can fill your own mug for only 99 cents. Talk about getting my coffee fix. The Mug Project aims to cut down on waste by encouraging the use of reusable containers.

Additionally, UT has its very own Farmers’ Market every Wednesday on the Agr. campus. This gives UT students and other Knoxvillians an opportunity to buy local and buy seasonably.

There were even bicycle-powered smoothies, local ice cream, a Nissan Leaf, a clean water initiative, and maybe coolest of all, UT’s futuristic looking alternative energy car.

Change happens on college campuses. Take the civil rights movement, the end of Apartheid, political campaigns, and equal rights movements. When driven young people come together, big things happen.
So watch out, world. UT is making progress towards a greener future.

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