It's been quite a while since I last updated, I apologize. I am now a senior student and, like most of my classmates, am trying to fight this disease called "senioritis". But, I am back in the swing of things and ready to update you on all the glorious, sustainable things that we at Cornell Dining have all been working on since last March.
Here we go:
Slope Day 2009 was quite a success as we aimed to make it a "zero-waste" event as possible. All products on the Slope were made from either compostable or recyclable materials. Most notable were the PLA (corn) beer cups and flatware as well as the "25% less plastic" water bottles that were distributed to the students. The event eventually got rained out, but we were able to divert around 600 pounds of compost from the landfill. Good day indeed!
Post-consumer composting is available at the following units:
- The Ivy Room in Willard Straight Hall (near the dish return belt)
- Martha's Cafe in Martha Rensselaer Hall
- Mattin's Cafe in Duffield Hall
- Moosewood at Anabel Taylor in Anabel Taylor Hall
- Synapsis Cafe in Weill Hall
- Trillium in Kennedy Hall
Please refer to the other blog post on what is and what is not compostable.
Fil Eden, the other student sustainability coordinator, has been gracious enough to manage this project as my focus has shifted onto the next project that I will now introduce....
Energy reduction is the overall goal of the energy audit project that I am working on this semester. I shall be determining how Dining can reduce its energy consumption at its various units. The pilot audit shall begin at Risley. More information shall arise as I get deeper into the project. In addition, Paula Amols, Cornell Dining Project Manager, has been spearheading other efforts since last year such as utlity metering on West Campus and the switching of incandescent lightbulbs to CFLs. She has been a great resource so far in helping me move forward with this project. Overall, it's a great learning experience on my end and I hope to figure out how Dining can feasibly reduce its energy consumption at the units
Local food is an increasing focus of the sustainability efforts at Cornell Dining. About 20% of the produce purchased by Cornell Dining is local, which is defined as within 100 miles or from New York State. As noted in the article, Home Grown: Cornell Dining Serves Up Locally Grown CALS Produce, "Cornell chefs are now using produce grown at Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station farms near campus as part of the Farms-to-Dining Initiative--corn, potatoes, squash and ornamental gourds are purchased directly from CALS’ farms."
Also, this past September, Cornell Dining hosted a "Farm to You" Harvest Dinner, which featured a menu made from local foods (sausages, cheeses, vegan succotash, sweet corn, and lima beans to name a few) and talks by local food experts such as Suvir Saran, a notable chef who raises heritage livestock breeds on a small farm for milk, meat, and fiber.
That is all for now, but I shall keep you updated on some upcoming promotions such as the "Reusable Mug Program" that shall be rolling out soon. Stay tuned.
Of course, as the Student Sustainability Coordinator, I welcome any feedback regarding our efforts. I will make note of any comment and bring it up during my weekly meeting with the team.
I hope you all have a great weekend!