Earth Day may have you feeling more conscientious of your impact on the planet, but some Central Oregon Community College clubs are dedicated to sustainability all year round. These clubs include the Garden Club and the Sustainability Club.
The Garden Club
Student Lisa Barnett founded the Garden Club in fall 2011 when she was inspired to form a community garden for the COCC campus. Barnett hoped that eventually vegetables grown in the garden could be used by the culinary center and Sodexo cafeteria.
Though the actual garden is still in its planning stages, the club is doing what it can to help COCC become more sustainable. The club collects compost and coffee grounds from Sodexo and the Cascades Culinary Institute for use in gardening.
In addition to eventually starting a community garden, Barnett said she is interested in helping keep the campus clean.
The Sustainability Club
During fall term, the Sustainability Club hosted a trash day. The club spent the day picking up garbage on campus and did a weigh-in of all the collected materials. These are only some of the ways the club has tried to raise awareness on the importance of recycling.
“Hopefully what this will accomplish is that students are more aware of recycling and less winds up getting thrown away,” said Stephen Lothrop, the president of the Sustainability Club.
The club will be participating in the Earth Day clean up on campus, but Lothrop said it’s important to take care of the planet every day of the year. The biggest changes start in the home, he said, and he wants the Sustainability club to help remind people of that.
The Sodexo Cafeteria
The Sodexo cafeteria does everything it can to prevent waste, according to Herb Baker, the director of food services.
The cooks are careful not to prepare too much food, said Baker, which is not only good for business, but also for the environment.
The cafeteria limits waste by donating compost and coffee grounds to the Garden Club and other growers, and in the future food waste is going to be donated to a local couple who will use it to feed their pigs, according to Baker. All that’s left is picked up by Bend Recycling.
William James contributed information to this article.
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