In September (18-22) the UC Sustainability Office will host UC Eco Week. This yearly festival of events celebrates and promotes everything to do with sustainability. This is a festival that is partly student-run and we would love your input. Are you passionate about making kombucha and want to hold a workshop? Know a great speaker and want to invite them? Love second hand clothes and want to organise a clothes swap? Saw that amazing thought-provoking movie and would like to screen it?
We are looking for students who have great ideas for sustainability-focused events to hold during Eco Week 2017. If you have the passion, we may be able to help you make it come true!
Write down an outline of your idea and send it to Puck at the UC Sustainability Office (firstname.lastname@example.org) before the end of May.
Eco Week continues to grow from strength to strength, with the fifth Eco Week taking place this year in September. Over 500 people (staff as well as students) took part in a range of sustainability-focused events.
On Monday students were treated to free All Good fair trade banana ice creams, with Engineers Without Borders rocking out a couple of hundred ice creams in just over an hour! Brian Phillips from Capital Works gave a sneak peek into some principals underlying the proposed new campus master plan. During Tiny House Tuesday Lucie Ozanne talked about her research into tiny houses, and a tour was organised for staff and students to two real life tiny houses built by UC students! In the evening, Kakariki ran a workshop for students and by students on how to eco-up your life.
Tiny house tour
UCs Stefan’s Tiny House
Clever recycling at Corianne and Pat’s Tiny House
Corianne and Pat outside their house
Queing up for free ice cream!
Learning about Fair Trade
Generation Zero drummed up a Climate Kilometer Grand Parade on Wednesday, which included not only e-cars but a penguin, a dog, a penny farthing, and even a wizard or two! Many thanks to the 18-odd student and staff volunteers who turned up to help marshal the parade and keep everybody safe! The parade was featured on TV3 news that night – (scroll to 23 min 45s for a look). The Eco Week Film ‘True Cost’ packed out Undercroft 101 and the Sustainability Office received a lot of feedback that the film was truly thought provoking for many. Chalky Digits, Christchurch’s very own ethical fashion company sponsored this event, gifting vouchers and gorgeous accessories as spot prizes.
Flowers and penguins during Ecoweek 2015
Grand Climate Kilometre Parade Ecoweek 2015
Grand Climate Parade Ecoweek 2015
Cyclists merging – photo by Davena Watkin
Penguin and polar bear – photo by Davena Watkin
Pole to Paris – photo by Davena Watkin
Penny farthing – photo by Luke Schwartfeger
Quirky parade – photo by Luke Schwartfeger
True Cost movie
OpSoc raised funds for Trees For Canterbury through their annual ball and hosted a pop up second-hand clothing stall. Engineers Without Borders also raised funds for the Gift of Light programme by inviting students to colour in this gorgeous mural.
Painting for Cambodia
Mural painting for Cambodia during Ecoweek 2015 with EWB
EWB Gift of Light
Yuki Shimahara and Martin Hales from OpSoc
The Urban Monk and Wabi O Kombucha tickled taste buds with samples of eco-power foods on Fermented Friday for foodies and Douglas Horrell also gave us bunch of great tips on how to make sour dough bread.
Yummy things to taste at Ecoweek workshops
Tasty treats fermented foods sampling
Learning about sourdough bread
A huge team is required to organise and support a week-long festival of events, and special mention must be made to all the General UC staff who helped to make this happen. This includes Brian Phillips from Capital Works, Student Liaison Services, all the staff at UC Security and UC Events, Tom Lawson Catering Manager for UCSA and staff at the Shilling Club, and Nick Calvert from Audio Visual.
Next week the Sustainability Office is bringing you some spring time sparkle into your life!
Eco Week (September 14-18) is a festival of sustainability-focused events, which celebrate and promote what you can do for
Make your own body products workshop
the environment, your community and your life.
We’re bringing you inspiring, fun and educational events that will get you thinking and provide opportunities to Make A Difference, both in your own life and in the wider world. Keep in touch via our Facebook page, and check our website regularly.
Last month, as part of Ecoweek 2014, the Food Resilience Network, the Sustainability office and UC Kakariki co-hosted UC’s first Student Food Forum! The purpose of the forum was to get students’ views on accessibility to healthy and affordable food. In addition, it was a chance for students to share their ideas on how a stronger food system can be created on campus as well as in wider Christchurch.
Participants in the forum heard some fantastic speakers: Christchurch City Councillor Pauline Cotter shared her experiences with food accessibility in Christchurch, and provided information on the forthcoming food resilience policy and action plan for the city. Brian Rick, the food resilience project coordinator for project Lyttelton, made students think about how food resilient they actually are – especially after having been through the Christchurch earthquakes. UCSA president Sarah Platt brought a student perspective. She spoke about how students often don’t think about the food they eat when they come to university and that living in a flat can see many opting for bulk meals without taking into account vital dietary needs. All three speakers provided great insights and ideas about food resilience at UC and in Christchurch and gave those attending a lot to think about.
Students were also given the chance to share their ideas on cards and the response was fantastic. Many respondents wanted cheaper food options, healthier choices on campus and a chance to learn more about growing their own food and eating locally. Having markets and fruit trees on campus were also popular suggestions for both the UC campus and wider Christchurch.
These student responses also informed an online Student Food Survey about the cost of, and accessibility to, nourishing food for students. This survey ran over the last month and will help to further inform the Food Resilience Network and the University on what students and wider Christchurch need in regards to a stronger food system and how these changes can be implemented. The responses will also be considered for the forthcoming food resilience policy and action plan for the city.
Thanks to Kate Walsh for reporting on the Student Food Forum.
Speed Dating Sustainability, a new Eco Week event focused on UC staff, was co-hosted by the Community of Practice for Administrators and the Sustainability Office.
Participants were offered ‘tasters’ about what they can do help create a sustainable campus. This included learning about ‘comfort’ bikes for commuter cycling, “Fair Trade Fridays”, the Eco Office programme, and participants had the opportunity to buy a reusable cup or drink bottle.
It looked like everybody took a shine to something, and that at least one or two happy, lifelong matches were made!
Lynne de Groot, School Administrator for Biological Sciences won a hamper of Fair Trade goodies, sponsored by Office Max. A very special thanks to everybody who helped to run the event and were wonderful sustainability match-makers; Catherine Woods, Dallas Geddes (CoPA), Jeanette King (comfort bikes), Annette Gillespie (UC Health Centre and Eco Office), and Islay Rackam (Concious Consumers/Fair Trade).
Single-use plastic bottles are creating a world of trouble all around the globe. Both the production and the disposal of them is incredibly taxing on the natural environment. UC recycles at least 90,000 single-use bottles in just a year. Reason enough, we believe, to delay no more and purchase a made-to-last water bottle! You can fill your bottle at various fountains on the UC Campus and you can wash it at the Heat and Eat areas.
To highlight this issue, and to accompany Matt Goodman’s photo exhibition during this last Eco Week, we developed this infographic.
For the first time, Jane and Matt from the Sustainability Office, ran an Edible Campus Tour around the UC Campus. The tour saw roughly 40 people visiting food plants around the campus. It was a great opportunity to share interesting facts about the ancient origins of these plants and modern uses of them, whilst raising awareness that they are for free harvesting!
Highlights were visiting an old Ginkgo Biloba tree and a nut producing pine tree. Also worth noting are the trial plantings of the Grounds Department which include lemons, limes, pears and Chilean guava. The word is that they are well browsed … enough to be sure that if similar plantings were established the food would not be wasted. The tour made its way to the Okeover community garden where the pizza oven was ready to go and everyone enjoyed crisp pizza, lemon water and fresh pine nuts.