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Stephen F. Austin State University

2012 Earth Day Spotlights

Sustainability Efforts at SFA and within the Nacogdoches Community

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SFA's Center for a Livable World

SFA's Center for a Livable World at Stephen F. Austin State University is collaborating with communities to research aspects of economics, environment, and society, the mutually reinforcing "triple bottom line" of community development. A pilot project in Kilgore will serve as a model for the Center to help other small cities with less resources and staff than larger cities. An edited anthology has also been produced to illustrate aspects of sustainability from the perspective of disciplines in the humanities and social sciences. For more information about the project or SFA's Center for a Livable World, contact Dr. William Forbes at clw@sfasu.edu or 936-468-7625.

Beginning in the fall, SFA students will have the option to pursue a Bachelor of Arts in Sustainable Community Development. The degree is designed to prepare students for a career assisting communities in the adoption of practices that promote a sustainable lifestyle. An introductory online course, SUS 101, Environment and Culture, is now available for enrollment as part of the major, part of a certificate in Sustainable Community Development, or as an elective.

Sustainable development involves balancing economic prosperity, environmental stewardship and social well-being, also referred to as the "triple bottom line." While many university programs related to sustainability focus on the application of new technologies or design standards, SFA's program will emphasize the humanities and social sciences. The program's curriculum will cover a broad range of courses offered by various departments within the College of Liberal and Applied Arts, while also providing valuable hands-on experience through junior or senior year internships.

SFA Dining

SFA Dining is committed to minimizing the environmental impact of its operations. Our goal is to help ensure that resources used for today's needs remain available for future generations, while exceeding our current guests' dining experience in a cost-effective and responsible manner. We are engaged in the following initiatives in an effort to embrace our social responsibility and become more sustainable.

SFA Dining Sustainability Measures:

The Environmental Awareness Movement (T.E.A.M.)

T.E.A.M. promotes recycling and sustainability on campus through action and public education. While we focus primarily on recycling, we strive to make the campus more "green" in many ways. The collapsible blue recycling bins placed around campus are a part of our ongoing effort to reduce the amount of campus recyclables that are sent to the landfill. Occasionally during the course of the semester, TEAM has a "Recycle Day" table set up along the route from the Library to the Student Center to collect non-traditional recyclables (i.e. batteries and ink cartridges) from the student body. The annual "Go Greek, Go Green" competition encourages greek organizations to recycle aluminum cans and offers a prize to the fraternity and sorority who recycle the most. Cans are donated to the Nacogdoches Animal Shelter, who use the proceeds to vaccinate, spay/neuter, and microchip prospective pets. Every year, TEAM hosts a booth at the Earth Day celebration to inform students and the community about efforts to recycle on campus and to encourage children to reuse materials for crafts. TEAM also helped to make students aware of the reusable bottle-filling stations that are available at various water fountains on campus. TEAM's ultimate goal is to aid in the establishment of a university-directed recycling program and to increase student awareness about the importance of recycling. Working with the Physical Plant and SFA's Sustainability Committee, TEAM has provided data to represent the student body's interest in recycling and the amount of recyclables that have been collected over the past four years.

Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful (KNB)

KNB is a volunteer organization with the mission: "to enhance our community by encouraging individual responsibility". KNB is an affiliate of both Keep Texas Beautiful and Keep America Beautiful. These organizations offer support and training for volunteers, as well as sponsor some of our programs and events. KNB offers several community programs such as the Adopt a Block Program, Texas Trash-off, Make A Difference Day, Nacogdoches Blooms, the Tree Nursery, the Litter Tool and Trash Can Lending Program and the Waste In Place.

SFA Sustainability Committee

The following is a list of campus sustainability initiatives to be used in the initial campus sustainability website being developed by Quality Attributes, a partner with Siemens who monitor energy use on campus. The list is based on a broad definition of sustainability. It incorporates some of the measures used in STARs rating system.

Student organizations

Facilities

Academics

Nacogdoches Farmers' Market

This Spring, the Nacogdoches Farmers' Market will begin it's seventh year. We have grown to 30+ vendors during the summer months. Our vendors sell homegrown and homemade items of all descriptions, including baked goods, local organic beef, homemade candles, ceramics, Texas artisan cheeses, local organic chicken, free range eggs, local organic tilapia fish, flowers, various handcrafted items, herbs, local honey, jewelry, plants, preserves, local produce, homemade soaps and locally made fruit wines.

When the weather is nice we have live musicians performing.

The Nacogdoches Farmers' Market, located at the "hitch lot" at the corner of West Main and Pearl Streets, is open from 8 AM until NOON or later every Saturday year round. For more information about the market or becoming a vendor, call 936-559-2507 (you can leave a message for Sarah O'Brien, Main Street Manager) or call Buckley at 903-822-3310.

All the vendors at the Nacogdoches Farmers' Market welcome you to explore the many items that they have grown or created for your enjoyment. Browse at your leisure, enjoy the music and get acquainted with your neighbors who are also looking for just the right bargain. If you don't see what you need, ask someone for help. The item you need may be just around the corner.

Appleby Community Farm

Appleby Community Farm, one of Nacogdoches' Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms, offers fresh, organic produce year round. With the goal of providing fresh, nutritious food to our local community, Appleby raises a variety of vegetables - including rare and heirloom varieties - using no pesticides or herbicides. CSA's bring together community members, farmers and agricultural land in a relationship of mutual support based on an annual commitment to one another-a commitment that ensures the survival of local farms today and for the future generations. In a CSA, community members pay the farmer an annual membership fee to cover farm production costs. In return, those members receive a weekly share of the harvest during the local growing season. The arrangement guarantees the farmer financial support and enables many small-to moderate-scale organic family farms to remain in business. Ultimately, CSA creates agriculture-supported communities where members receive a wide variety of foods harvested at the peak of ripeness, flavor, and vitamin and mineral content. As author Michael Pollan suggests, "Eat Food. Not too much. Mostly plants."

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