Jul 222008
Authors: Scott Callahan

As CSU’s prominent image as “the green university” becomes more and more visible nation-wide, the school will hit its biggest green stage yet on Aug. 25.

Hundreds of students will go through every scrap of trash at the Democratic National Convention in Denver, ensuring the Democratic Party will reach their goal of recycling, reusing or composting 85 percent of the waste generated by the convention.

The four-day event is expected by party leaders to be their biggest convention ever.

The DNC Committee contacted CSU and asked if administrators would be up to the task of finding 520 volunteers to meet the goal.

Tonie Miyamoto, the head of the Live Green Team, the group charged with recruiting the volunteers, said she is excited for the event. But her excitement is not for the thick political climate of this year’s presidential race, but rather for the environment.

“This is not a political issue, this is a global issue,” said Tonie Miyamoto.

Using what they call “guerilla marketing,” the Live Green Team has been busy posting flyers, setting up booths and using Facebook and word of mouth to spread news of the effort.

Their goal is 520 volunteers, so they will continue the guerrilla marketing to promote the event.

Miyamoto said she is confident they will reach their goal, but they continue to promote and spread the word of the effort to the individual and the university.

The Live Green Team currently has 310 faculty, staff and alumni signed up.

The DNCC chose CSU because would be the best candidate for the job, because of recent efforts by the university to market itself as environmentally conscious, Miyamoto said.

Last year CSU finished second in RecycleMania, a national collegiate competition pitting 400 colleges and universities against each other to see who could recycle the most. CSU came in second to Kalamazoo College, a small public Michigan institution.

This among other small victories were the just the right credentials to land CSU in what university officials call “the once in a lifetime opportunity for the CSU community to help green a major national event.”

Throughout the week of the DNC, which is also the first week of fall classes, the volunteers will be at the Pepsi Center and Convention Center sorting out recyclable material from non-recyclable in the Quality Control Centers of each building.

CSU will provide bio-diesel buses to transport students from Fort Collins to Denver all week.

Volunteer Jerry Lopez, a senior business accounting major, is eager to participate. When asked why he volunteered he said he just wanted to make a difference.

Lopez said he has been environmentally conscious for over a year now and is active in many green efforts. He is a mentor in the Sustainability Group on campus, a Ram Connections group for incoming freshman.

Lopez encourages students to join the effort, “Though it is a political event, it’s our chance to showcase our green effort at CSU and it will raise environmental awareness.”

Staff writer Scott Callahan can be reached at news@collegian.com

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