The Scarlet & Black

The Student News Site of Grinnell College

The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Burling gets lit

A new lightbulb in Burling Library

By Andrea Baumgartel

Over the weekend in Burling Library, The SGA Green Committee hosted an informal lightbulb-reinstatement event in which students were invited to switch outdated compact florescent lamp (CFL) bulbs in accessible areas such as desks and tables for an environmentally friendly and lower-cost LED alternative.

Representing the committee were Emily Burgess ’19, Zach Steckel ’18, and Andrew Zdechlik ’19. The event itself was the brainchild of Kara Nielsen ’17, who did the majority the organization and planning.

From 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., The Green Committee annexed two long rectangular tables on the first floor and filled them with 300 fresh-out-of-the-box LEDs, a suggestion form, fruit and cookies. Industrious workers and procrastinators alike were dispatched through the dusty shelves to abolish the inefficient bulbs and screw in the new. All of the old CFL bulbs are being donated to Second Mile or any student who wants one.

The idea was partially inspired by the inaccessible nature of participation in hands-on change for many college students.

“As students, it’s often hard to do hands-on stuff,” Nielsen said, but emphasized that sometimes the simplest actions can bring about the most immediate change.

“We thought that this event was a great way to combine green initiative with student engagement and outreach,” Nielsen said, “We didn’t just transfer the lightbulbs, we were able to get other students in on the action in a public setting. This [project] is just the kick-off of many.”

A new lightbulb in Burling Library

The Green Committee was granted $20,000 just for this semester to explore and institute more green ideas, policies and innovations.

It plans to track the amount of energy saved with the LEDs compared to CFLs, and present their findings to President Kington and other members of administration in order to garner more support for environmental sustainability on campus.

Other projects that are in the works include installing energy monitors into dorms to increase awareness of energy usage.

“We also want to do some projects that bring solar and/or wind power to campus. A personal goal of mine would be putting a large chunk of our budget in collaboration with other funds to make a building on campus entirely solar powered,” Zdechlik said, “with such a large budget, we really want others to have a say as well. We encourage anyone who has other ideas [for the Green Committee] to share them.”

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
Donate to The Scarlet & Black
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Scarlet & Black Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *