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Earth Day Plans Spotlight On-Campus, Off-Campus Green Efforts

Organizers of Earth Day activities on campus say Old Dominion University faculty, staff and students are already doing a pretty good job incorporating environmentalism into their daily lives.

But Doug Alexander, acting director of ODU's Office of Environmental Health and Safety, said the occasional friendly reminder doesn't hurt.

"We've done Earth Day activities before where we've organized big activities and meetings - and we haven't had much participation," Alexander said.

So this year, organizers are commandeering the common areas of Webb Center on Tuesday, April 21, where on- and off-campus exhibitors will demonstrate their green initiatives to students during the mid-day activity hour.

"It's the best way to catch the largest number of participants, because the students will be there anyway," Alexander said.

Groups that are promoting efforts on the actual Earth Day the next day, such as a creek cleanup being organized by Alexander's office, can recruit volunteers with their Webb Center displays.

Outside vendors that have signed on to participate include Vanasse Hangen Brustlin Inc., Keep Norfolk Beautiful, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Green Alternatives and Synergy Recycling.

Groups from ODU that will set up displays include the Virginia Coastal Energy Research Consortium, the Sustainability Institute, Facilities Management, Dining Services, the Student National Environmental Health Association, the Go Green Committee and the environmental health and safety office.

Alexander said the Earth Day event is also valuable to tell students and staff about things that are already being done on campus.

"There are all kinds of positive examples," he said. "One of the biggest is the rainwater collection system on the surface of Forman Field. It helps water plants all around the stadium."

For more information about Earth Day activities on campus, call 683-4495.

This article was posted on: April 15, 2009

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