Higher Education Webinars

Getting to Green

An administrator pushes, on a shoestring budget, to move his university and the world toward a more sustainable equilibrium.

March 10, 2009 - 4:58pm
I often find it interesting to chase down links and other references provided when folks respond to my posts. Generally, I learn something. Sometimes, what I learn is that I didn't make myself clear in my original wording.
March 9, 2009 - 5:06pm
... isn't technically about sustainability. It's about food. Or, more technically, our agricultural system. It's here. You should go read it and then come back. I'll wait. OK, so what did you think? My first impression was that the writer (Paul Roberts) got it right on a number of fronts. Among them:
March 5, 2009 - 5:23pm
Having dissed George Will, a conservative darling of the ostensibly liberal media, I want to balance the scales by dissing George Monbiot who's truly on the left. In general, I enjoy reading Monbiot. He's no Ida Tarbell but, with time, he might turn into Izzy Stone.
March 3, 2009 - 9:17pm
Promoting sustainability at Greenback U. brings me into constant contact with both students and faculty. Each group has what I call its typical objection when presented with encouragement to behave more sustainably.
March 2, 2009 - 12:41pm
Over the weekend, I had the opportunity to watch an old (old, old) movie -- Trouble in Paradise. It was released in 1932, and starred Herbert Marshall, Miriam Hopkins and Kay Francis. Particularly enjoyable to this Rocky & Bullwinkle fan were Edward Everett Horton and Charlie Ruggles in supporting roles. (If that reference doesn't make sense, you haven't watched "Fractured Fairy Tales" nearly enough. And a fairy tale is what this movie is, through and through.)
February 26, 2009 - 2:21pm
While we're on the subject of visual presentation of information, I just want to point out that part of the reason I'm psyched about being able to map greenhouse gas emissions geographically is because (let's be honest here) there isn't currently an effective visual image of climate disruption.
February 25, 2009 - 4:42pm
Conventional wisdom has it that 70% of the information received from a message is based on how the messenger looks, 20% on how the messenger sounds, and only 10% on what the messenger says. I'm sure those numbers are accurate, because they've been cited by Eddie Izzard in public presentations, and if he's not an expert, who is?
February 23, 2009 - 2:36pm
  A while back, I said it would be a bad idea to bail out the auto companies. I noted that (1) they had neither expertise nor apparent plans to build the cars America -- and the world -- needs, (2) the loans they were asking for at the time were probably just a first installment, and (3) even on the basis of just the first installment amounts, it would be cheaper to buy them outright.   Since then, the situation has changed – and by “changed” I don’t mean “improved” in any sense.  
February 18, 2009 - 5:09pm
I was speaking recently with a representative of Greenback U's dining services. My intent (predictably) was to move them towards changing their menus and practices, with an eye towards emitting less greenhouse gas. This is a conversation we have periodically, and it pretty much always comes out the same. They do purchase locally when they can, they do push fruits and vegetables as much as possible, they do operate as energy efficiently as possible. They want to do the right thing.
February 15, 2009 - 9:55pm
I like to buy my wife flowers when it's cold out. Not on Valentine's Day -- I'm too cheap to pay twice as much as the same flowers would cost me a week earlier or a week later -- but a few times each year, and for no apparent reason. (It's not altruism, it's enlightened self-interest.) And not during the summer. During the summer, she can grow her own flowers. And does. (Self-interest includes not competing with the family gardener.)

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