UI holding green events in lead-up to Earth Day

Earth Day is just two days away, and The University of Iowa is celebrating with a series of green events, which include tree planting, a waste audit and a bike to campus event.

Here is a summary of this week’s activities:

–UI Facilities Management, Building and Landscape Services are holding Campus Stewardship Days today 9-11 am. and tomorrow, 1-3 p.m. Volunteers will meet at the wooded area south of Boyd Law Building plant tree seedlings and remove garlic mustard. To volunteer, contact Shawn Fitzpatrick, shawn-fitzpatrick@uiowa.edu, 319-335-5107.

Also as part of Earth Month, UI Landscape Services Tree Crew announced they have been using biodegradable, renewable, less hazardous canola oil in their chainsaws instead of petroleum-based bar and chain oil.

“It always bothered me when cutting near water or wet pavement that you could see an oil slick from the petroleum-based bar and chain oil. I did a little research and found that many use canola (rapeseed oil) without sacrificing performance or affecting the saw negatively,” said Andy Dahl, UI arborist in Building & Landscape Services.

See how canola oil can be used for “green” chainsaw use.

–UI student organizations will take part in the OrgPlant tree planting competition from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday in various designated areas around campus. Check-in is at Campus Recreation and Wellness Center for the event. UI Student Government, UI Facilities Management, The 10,000 Hours Show, Office of Sustainability, and the UI Earth Month Planning Committee are presenting this event, which will have a cash prize for the student organization with the greatest number of tree planting hours.

–The School of Urban and Regional Planning is hosting two Bike-to-Campus events on Friday, one from 7 to 9 a.m. at the corner of Melrose and Hawkins Drive (near Kinnick Stadium), and a second from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Pentacrest at the T. Anne Cleary Walkway. Bike riders can stop by and learn about bike maintenance, grab a snack and get bike-related items.

— The waste stream of two UI residence halls will be audited to uncover opportunities to reduce waste sent to the landfill. This event will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. Friday, at the basketball courts behind Burge Residence Hall.

Volunteers will gather at that time to sort waste gathered from Burge and Daum Residence Halls. The waste-stream data will help UI Housing and Dining continue to improve recycling and waste reduction efforts. The audit will be held in conjunction with the second annual Green D.R.E.A.M. (daring to raise environmental awareness mainstream) Expo — where environmental organizations can increase awareness about their initiatives — coordinated by ECO Hawk, a student group founded by UI College of Public Health students.

Volunteers for the waste audit can sign up for a 30-minute or longer shift by e-mailing Benjamin Green at benjamin-green@uiowa.edu. Protective gear and safety instructions will be provided.

See a complete calendar of Earth Month events.

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