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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Students get green for energy efficiency

One reason UA tuition increased was to fund sustainability efforts on campus, and now that money is beginning to be put to use.

The recently formed student-led Green Fund Committee will have $400,000 of that money to allocate to campus sustainability projects.

A transition team convened by UA President Robert Shelton over the summer created the Green Fund Committee in response to the Arizona Board of Regents approving sustainability funding in March.

Lon Huber, Green Fund Committee chair from the Graduate and Professional Student Council was one of the students on the team.

“”It was really a collaborate effort between students, faculty and the administration,”” Huber said.

The Associated Students of the University of Arizona appointed Sen. Chad Travis, as its vice chair for the Green Fund Committee. ASUA will have three members in addition to the vice chair and GPSC will have two additional members.

Travis and Huber are concerned with making sure the money is spent strategically in a way that will benefit the campus and save students money.

“”My number-one thing would just be that the students care about the projects we allocate money to, because if it is only projects that the committee cares about and not the student body as a whole, it doesn’t do the students any good. It would only be something for the committee then, and that’s not right,”” Travis said.

According to Huber, students were the driving force behind the Green Fund Committee and he is excited that they will have a big role in deciding how the campus becomes sustainable.

“”I think it’s great and it’s also acknowledging all the hard work the students have done for campus sustainability,”” Huber said. “”At the end of the day it’s our money, and we should be able to invest it in projects that really align with our values.””

Huber hopes to show students how, in the long run, green projects can cost less and save the campus money.

Joe Abraham, sustainability coordinator of Student Affairs, said the committee is a way to cut increasing energy costs that ultimately get transferred onto students in the form of higher tuition.

The committee is in the process of writing its bylaws and determining the criteria they will use to select projects. 

Huber encourages any students who are interested to get involved.

“”We’re looking for great ideas, out of the box ideas,”” Huber said. “”It doesn’t matter your major.””

 

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