Cut waste, earn points: challenge

In a bid to raise awareness and encourage environmentally sustainable practices across campus, academic and operational units will compete to attach their names to two new student scholarships. The scholarships will be given to two students who exhibit outstanding environmental stewardship next May.

"It is a way to get faculty and staff involved in reducing energy, water and paper use on campus," says Freda Pagani, director of the Sustainability Office. "And taking part in the Eco-Challenge is a good way to promote a greater sense of community here on campus."

Pagani's office, in conjunction with the Waste Management Program and the UBC Trek Program, is issuing a challenge to all faculties, administrative and operational units across campus to top one another in their efforts to conserve energy, water, paper, reduce car commuting, and reduce waste from now to May.

Each month, faculty and staff will earn points towards the honour of attaching their unit name to one of the scholarships by initiating and practicing ways to reduce, reuse, recycle and rethink how they do business.

The Sustainability Office has selected a topic each month along with the achievements required to win points. The challenge for November and December focuses on energy.

Monthly winners will receive prizes donated by: Waste Management, the Trek Program, Food Services, the Bookstore, the Museum of Anthropology, the Botanical Garden, the Chan Centre, the Frederic Wood Theatre, University Golf Club and Gabriola Cycle and Kayak.

Faculty and staff are also being asked to contribute to the scholarships. Contributors will have their names entered in a prize draw next year.

"This is a way to return the savings realized by faculty and staff in their environmentally sustainable practices to students," says Pagani.

Pagani has provided $1,000 in seed money towards the operational units' scholarship fund while the President's Office has matched that with $1,000 towards the academic units' contribution.

"That $1,000 is from the savings that we have accumulated already from the reduction in energy use here at UBC since the Sustainability Office opened last May," says Pagani.

For details about the Eco-Challenge, visit the Sustainability Office Web site at or phone 604-822-0473.