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Students urged to be green on Earth Day
This year’s celebrations will feature a clothing swap and a clean up of Paradise Creek.
Published 4/20/2012
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The Pullman campus will provide several opportunities to reduce, reuse and recycle in celebration of Earth Day.


Earth Day is a day to step back and realize how much we are dependent upon the planet for survival, said Jamie Bentley, Environmental Wellbeing coordinator. It is a day of appreciation.


For starters, the ASWSU Environmental Task Force, the Environmental Science Club and WSU Wellbeing will host a clothing swap and giveaways on Friday from 11 a.m to 3 p.m on the Glenn-Terrell Mall.


On Saturday, the Center for Civic Engagement (CCE) will offer logged community service hours to students that help clean up Paradise Creek at 9 a.m in Moscow.


“Earth Day is about celebrating our environment and bringing awareness to our community about environmental issues and what we can do about those issues,” Bentley said.


Friday’s clothing swap will be a venue to exchange clothes with other students who are looking for a fresh look. For each item of clothing a student brings in, that many items may be chosen from others’ exchanged clothes.


“Wellbeing held a clothing swap this past fall and a lot of people participated and liked the event,” Bentley said. “We felt that this type of event demonstrates all three R’s - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.”


Not only was the swap popular, but choosing to swap clothes instead of purchasing a new wardrobe is beneficial for the environment.


“Generating one cotton T-shirt takes 500 gallons of water. A pair of jeans, we’re talking 2,000-2,500 gallons of water,” said Leif Moon-Nielsen, former Environmental Science Club and Environmental Task Force chair.


The clothes that do not get picked up will not go to waste. Robi Nilson, chair of the ASWSU Environmental Task Force, said the leftover clothing will be donated to charities. Either way, the clothing swap will serve a good cause.


Along with the clothing swap, GIVE will host its second annual RIPE event where local farmers provide fresh produce to try. Avista Utilities will also be giving out free light bulbs and eco-items.


“We’re looking for students to think of a way in their life that they could do something more environmentally friendly,” Nilson said. “We really wanted to get people thinking about something they could actually change in their life instead of just providing them with information.”


The CCE encourages people to help clean up Paradise Creek on Saturday. Erin McIlraith, CCE marketing and communications coordinator, said the CCE is trying to get the community involved in Earth Day by offering community service to students who help clean up the creek.


“I’m looking forward to seeing the amazing impact students and others will have on our community at the Paradise Creek Clean Up,” McIlraith said. “It’s always amazing to me to see how much we can accomplish in improving our world when we work together.”


Sometimes going green can be as simple as recycling a plastic bottle or encouraging family and friends to carpool.


“(Pledging an act of green) is to promote people trying to start to make changes,” Moon-Nielsen said. “What we’re hoping is that this starts the ball rolling for people.”

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