Ecologic Meeting September 18, 2012

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Agenda

Weather

  • The weather was bad, so we used a pirate pad [1]
    • We had several alumni join us on the pirate pad, which was great

Intros

  • Elizabeth Anderson. Junior Sustainability Studies Major. Does anyone know anything about water privatization? Because that's a serious problem in a lot of countries.
  • Jen Spartz. Senior Physics Major. Less than 1% of water on earth is used as drinking water
  • Amanda Levine. Senior ChemE. water fact, pretty please?The human body is up to 60% water. or anything about water
  • Sarah Notis. Sophomore. CivE. If the NYC Subway were not continuously pumped, it would completely flood in a few hours. Also, I know someone who is developing a real-time bacterial detection system for water. Because water contamination is bad.
  • Kane Hadley. Graduated 2011 Computer Science and Computer Systems Engineering. Now working at MIT. If not for the protective layer of dry ice on the poles of Mars any water that may be under there would evaporate.
  • Anna Hughes, Senior Physics Major. There are as many molecules in ten droplets of water as there are galaxies in the universe.
  • Nikki Bittner. Coterminal in Math undergrad and Financial Engineering and Risk Analytics grad. Petrified about water.
  • Anasha Cummings, DIS 2012, telecommuting in at Elizabeth's request. It is wet outside so I didn't come in. Also I forgot. Also I am pretty much graduated...so yeah. Not as involved as I once was. :( Anyway...about water. I have so many fun facts! I took an awesome class this summer at the Bacon Institute. Here are a couple:
    • The Clean Water Act had has as it's primary goal to "Eliminate the Discharge of Pollutants in the Navigable waters of the United States by 1985"did that happen? No. There are still 200,000 permitted discharge sites in the U.S.
    • My other teacher was mostly teaching us about non-point source pollution and his research was in coliform bacteria so he had lots of gross facts, like that the average person caries four rams of fecal mater on them all of the time. So don't go in public pools. :p
    • Also New York City. They have awesome water. We checked out their water system. They spent about $15 Billion in the past decade or so on maintaining their watershed. This allows them to maintain most of their water at drinkable levels without any purification at all. But they use a lot of water.
    • [2]
  • Adrienne Wilson - Senior DIS/Co-terminal EEVP
    • did a report in high school where I conducted water quality tests on Singapore's reservoir system under the SG government's request
    • Isn't International Coastal Cleanup Day in September? I don't know. That'd be interesting to find out.
    • Singapore's drinking water is 2% reclaimed NEWater (treated sewage water) - It's not bad
    • I used to intern at NOAA in Hawaii back in 2010 for marine debris stuff
  • Jessica Maulding, senior Management and Psychology major. Only about 34 percent of the US' marine waters are actually protected. This percentage is even less when you take the global percentage. Also, carbon levels are through the roof, which is heating the oceans to unsustainable levels, and is actually causing massive death of life-sustaining coral reefs globally. Cool!

The Happenings

  • Did everyone who wanted to sign up for FLG sign up?
  • Story Harvest on October 20th at the Sanctuary for Independent Media
  • STS Sustainability Studies film series
    • First film is 9/30
      • Modern Day Slaves
      • 4-6pm in Sage 3303
  • Sustainability Food Guide
    • Philip, Tony, Anna, and Elizabeth have all sent ours in.
    • Preliminary design has been made
    • Elizabeth needs to send articles to Amanda to proofread

The Discussion: Water

  • Is bottled water a good thing?
    • Convenient
      • Could just refill coca-cola, lemonade, iced tea bottles, etc.
      • Re-usable water bottles
      • Does make sense to re-use regular plastic water bottles, at least from a laziness and cost viewpoint
  • How do we define reusable vs. disposable? aren't these kind of arbitrary?
    • Disposable are not reusable?
      • Example: disposable cameras
      • Something you only use once?
        • But what if you wash plastic forks, etc.? Does that make them re-usable?
      • Low cost? So it makes sense to throw away?

Attendance

  • Elizabeth
  • Jen
  • Amanda
  • Sarah
  • Kane
  • Anna
  • Nikki
  • Anasha
  • Adrienne
  • Jessica