My Sustainability Impact

It is now my second year at UIC and I would say I have made a pretty neutral sustainable impact on the UIC community directly, but I would say my personal sustainable impact on the environment around me has been a positive one. Taking the time out to be conscious of my actions regarding the environment is the first step to living a more sustainable and positively impactful life. I recycle at home and at school, I do my very best to not overuse paper and keep most of my files/assignments electronic. And when weather permits, I try and ride my bike to and from class as often as possible. Also, even though the personal impact may not be felt as much, just by being a UIC student, we are all creating a positive impact on the campus at large. Example, “In 2011, the Board of Trustees approved the UIC Sustainability Fee (formerly known as the Green Fee) as an initiative to improve the quality of campus operations, reduce UIC’s environmental impact, and generate awareness about environmental and sustainable issues by creating opportunities for students’ involvement. “ This fee only $3 a semester for all students, but it has helped to fund various projects across campus, including but not limited to the UIC Heritage Gardens, retrofitted water bottle fill stations, reduced DIvy Bike membership, and off grid bus shelters. In the very first reading, An Introduction to Sustainability: Humanity and the Environment , it briefly talks about, socio-political dynamic within sustainability. “Socio-political refers to interactions between institutions/firms and people, functions expressive of human values, aspirations and well-being, ethical issues, and decision- making that depends upon collective action.” The Sustainability Fee at UIC which is an institution in its most basic form has created this social contract that we as students participate in. It is unfortunate that most students outside of more environmentally minded majors most likely don’t even realize their impact or that the fee is added to their semester tuition, but this still makes them a part of the contract. On a side note, I think It would be great to even raise this fee to $4-5 dollars in order to create more resources for future projects and expansions on current ones.

Sources:

https://sustainability.uic.edu/campus-resources/sustainability-fee

https://us130urbansustainability.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/intro-to-sustainability.pdf

 

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2 thoughts on “My Sustainability Impact

  1. I agree that it’s unfortunate students aren’t aware of their contributions to the sustainability fee. I wonder if raising the fee would be helpful not only in adding to the ways we can contribute to the environment but also make students more aware. Maybe if the fee were more substantial like $50 we could really change the campus in ways that are visible and obvious it would be hard to ignore. There are many schools rated positively for having green campuses and that could also be a way for Uic to attract more students.. Especially environmentally conscious and innovative students.

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    • I really like the fact that you brought up the sustainability fee. Many people do not know about it and I think the campus will benefit a lot more if everyone knew. Students will become more conscious of the impact they have on the environment. Furthermore, considering it is only $3 I think some students would be willing to contribute more money since our generation has the power to make a substantial difference to life on Earth for future generations.

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