BOONE, N.C. — With much of the Appalachian State University Community off campus due to concerns related to COVID-19, the university’s Office of Sustainability has provided ideas for how faculty, staff and students can continue to implement sustainable practices.
These suggestions focus on sustainability as a way of life — one of the office’s core values — by reducing waste and saving energy at home and in the community.
Jennifer Maxwell, sustainability program manager in the Office of Sustainability, offered one such tip for at-home sustainability: Set up a home compost pile.
“Composting can be a fun and beneficial project to help manage food scraps and paper products and produce nutrient-rich soil for your garden,” she said. “Composting and gardening are fantastic activities that allow you to reconnect with the outdoors and each other.”
Here are a variety of other ways to incorporate sustainability into everyday life:
- Purchasing and waste
- Refuse single-use utensils when getting takeout food.
- Choose reusable napkins and washcloths when cleaning and sanitizing.
- Buy natural cleaners in concentrated form.
- Reuse any plastic bags provided with takeout food and/or groceries.
- Select sustainably sourced products, when possible.
- Community support
- Support local businesses by getting takeout or delivery or by buying gift cards.
- Check on and support neighbors and friends.
- Outdoor activities
- Plant seedlings and till gardens.
- Build raised garden beds with old pallets or recycled lumber.
- Go for a bike ride, take a hike or go for a walk.
- Plant a tree.
- Set up a home compost pile (see above).
- Energy savings
- Open blinds instead of turning on lights.
- Put up a “no junk mail” sign on the mailbox.
- Time showers and baths.
- Prep, cook and/or freeze food to plan meals for a week at a time.
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About Sustainability at Appalachian
Appalachian State University’s leadership in sustainability is known nationally. The university’s holistic, three-branched approach considers sustainability economically, environmentally and equitably in relationship to the planet’s co-inhabitants. The university is an active steward of the state’s interconnected financial, cultural and natural resources and challenges students and others think critically and creatively about sustainability and what it means from the smallest individual action to the most broad-based applications. The university offers both undergraduate and graduate academic degree programs that focus on sustainability. In addition, 100 percent of Appalachian’s academic departments offer at least one sustainability course or course that includes sustainability, and all students graduate from programs that have adopted at least one sustainability learning outcome. Learn more at https://appstate.edu/sustainability.
About Appalachian State University
As the premier public undergraduate institution in the state of North Carolina, Appalachian State University prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The Appalachian Experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and to embrace diversity and difference. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Appalachian is one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina System. Appalachian enrolls more than 20,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.