The Green NAU Energy Initiative is Hiring a Student Worker

The Green NAU Energy Initiative is hiring a student worker to be an outreach assistant! Please see the job description below for more information on the position and on how to apply.

Green NAU Energy Initiative Outreach Assistant

About the Green NAU Energy Initiative

The Green NAU Energy Initiative (GNEI) began in 2013 as a campus wide effort to encourage students, faculty, and staff to reduce the amount of energy and water they use in order to reduce the university’s environmental impact and save costs. In addition to this initial program GNEI also works on other campus sustainability issues such as recycling and waste issues, energy efficiency, renewable energy investigation, etc.

Position Summary

The Green NAU Energy Initiative is looking for a student program assistant to help with the outreach and overall operations of the program. This position will focus on a variety of marketing related functions as well as day-to-day organizational tasks.

Job Duties

  • Create new and edit existing marketing and program materials such as websites, various print materials, informational videos, and social media messaging. (50%)
  • Assist the GNEI staff with presentations and web based newsletters. (10%)
  • Coordinate and post on behalf of GNEI through social media. (10%)
  • Data entry and management. (5%)
  • Other program support such as placement and installation of marketing materials, event planning, general office work, and other duties as assigned. (25%)

Required Skills

  • Strong written and verbal communication
  • Working knowledge of Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and Indesign
  • Understanding of social media
  • Basic understanding of making videos

Desired Skills

  • Public Speaking
  • Knowledge of Final Cut Pro X
  • Knowledge of video production

Compensation

DOE
10-25 hours/week

How to Apply

  1. Complete student worker application located here > http://nau.edu/uploadedFiles/Administrative/Finance_and_Administration/Facility_Services/Documents/Fac_Staff/HR_Forms/FS_student_app_fillable.pdf
  2. Email completed application, resume, and design example to FSPS@nau.edu and nick.koressel@nau.edu.

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Recycling at Home Football Events

For the first-time ever NAU recycled at their home football tailgating events. For each game this season a group of volunteers handed out recycling bags and discussed recycling best-practices with attendees. By the end of the season tailgaters were waiting for their recycling bags. The Environmental Caucus’ Waste Minimization Team led the effort.

Volunteer groups were made up of students from a First-Year Seminar on Waste, the resident housing eco-reps, the Green Jacks, and other recycling supporters.

Recycling Blog

Green “Axe Me about Recycling” t-shirts could be seen on many students at the tailgating events this season.  Above you can see the recycling symbol on the front and on the back they say axe me about recycling.

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EPA RECOGNIZES NORTHERN ARIZONA UNIVERSITY FOR LEADING GREEN POWER USE

GreenPowerPartnerMark

Northern Arizona University reduces carbon footprint with green power use

Northern Arizona University has officially been purchasing Green Power for one year and has received recognition from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency from joining their Green Power Partnership. Northern Arizona Universityis using more than 8 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power this year, which is enough green power to meet 13 percent of the organization’s electricity use. Northern Arizona University is buying a combination of renewable energy certificates (RECs) and utility green power products from Arizona Public Service and Renewable Choice Energy. In addition, Northern Arizona University is generating green power from on-site renewable energy systems, including their 163 wWh solar field. This demonstrates a proactive choice to switch away from traditional sources of electricity generation and support cleaner renewable energy alternatives.

“This is a huge honor and we are proud to be recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,” said John Morris, Assistant Vice President of Facility Services, “Using green power helps our organization become more sustainable and is an essential choice in reducing fossil fuel pollution and mitigating climate risk.”

Last year, the Green Fund surveyed students to see how important they thought purchasing renewable energy was and found that 47.86% believed it to be “very important”, 37.41% think it’s “somewhat important”, and 10.91% said “a little important.” Only 3.82% thought it was “not at all important.”

Green power is electricity that is generated from environmentally preferable renewable resources, such as wind, solar, geothermal, eligible biogas, biomass, and low-impact hydro. Using green power helps accelerate the development of new renewable energy capacity nationwide and helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector.

According to the U.S. EPA, Northern Arizona University’sgreen power use of more than 8 million kWh is equivalent to avoiding the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of nearly 1,200 passenger vehicles per year, or the CO2 emissions from the electricity use of nearly 800 average American homes annually.

NAU does hundreds of other things to decrease its environmental footprint, such as building all new construction to LEED silver standards, installing energy efficient fixtures and appliances, organizing multiple conservation campaigns, being a Bike Friendly Campus, composting our food, and so much more. Visit nau.edu/Green-NAU/ to learn more and find opportunities to get involved and become part of NAU’s culture of sustainability.

About EPA’s Green Power Partnership

The Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program that encourages organizations to use green power as a way to reduce the environmental impacts associated with electricity use. The Partnership currently has more than 1,300 Partner organizations voluntarily using billions of kilowatt-hours of green power annually. Partners include a wide variety of leading organizations such as Fortune 500® companies, small and medium sized businesses, local, state, and federal governments, and colleges and universities. For additional information, please visit http://www.epa.gov/greenpower.

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Student Worker Position at Institute for Sustainable Energy Solutions

Are you looking for a student worker position? The Institute for Sustainable Energy Solutions is hiring! Check out the job description below.

ISES Student worker

Assignment: Administrative support for NAU’s Institute for Sustainable Energy Solutions (ISES); some outreach, communication and design projects.

Context: NAU’s Institute for Sustainable Energy Solutions, now in its fourth year, is expanding its team and its outreach efforts. These include the website (www.nau.edu/ises) and other communications materials and campaigns. ISES has a Director, Project Director and Administrative Associate managing most of its functions. ISES is seeking a student worker to help out with administrative tasks, communications, web updates, and other duties as needed. This employee will also have opportunities to help out from time to time with ISES research projects or outreach events.

Tasks:

  • Provide administrative support for institute (e.g. paperwork, office maintenance/duties, errands on campus)
  • Perform website updates, including updating existing pages and managing site structure and new pages; Assist with outreach materials, including writing, design, and delivery
  • Occasionally support special events or outreach efforts (e.g. K-12 student visit, research symposium, etc)
  • Meet weekly with ISES Administrative Associate and Project Director, and regularly attend ISES weekly student meetings

Required skills:

  • Excellent communications and organizational skills;
  • Website maintenance or design experience and interest/ability to learn more;
  • Ability to take instruction, ask clarifying questions, and work independently;
  • Some background in energy or climate (any classes, research, or interest).

Hours/Compensation: Up to 10 hours/week. $10-14/hr depending on experience.

To apply: Send a resume and cover letter to Megan Coe, ISES Administrative Associate, at Megan.Coe@nau.edu

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NAU Sustainability Course Directory Has Been Launched

The NAU Office of Sustainability is excited to introduce the NAU Sustainability Course Directory – a new online database system for all the courses from any department that are focused on sustainability or simply have a sustainability component in them. Both undergraduate and graduate students can now enjoy a constantly updated list of classes that cover a wide range of topics related to environmental, cultural, economic, and social sustainability.

The challenge of spreading awareness about sustainability and creating an environmentally conscious behavior always comes down to nurturing eco-literacy. In order to provide a deeper understanding of the global climate change challenges we face nowadays, NAU is attempting to ease an access to the list of classes that serve as an educational tool about that issue. The introduction of this course database is a great contribution towards cultivating a culture of sustainability in the Northern Arizona University, bringing a better understanding of the need for a more environmentally responsible behavior to its students.

The courses are submitted by their instructors using a specially designated online form. The NAU Office of Sustainability offers its faculty members the undermentioned guidance to self-identify whether the classes they are submitting are sustainability-focused or sustainability-related. Please see below:

  • A “sustainability-focused” course concentrates on the concept of sustainability, including its social, economic, and environmental dimensions, or examine an issue or topic using sustainability as a lens.
  • A “sustainability-related” course incorporates sustainability as a distinct course component or module, or concentrate on a single sustainability principle or issue.

After being approved by our administrator, the course appears in the online database and can be looked up using a convenient search engine that provides 3 criteria options that helps a student find a better fit.

Useful links:

For NAU students – NAU Sustainability Course Directory

For NAU course instructors – Sustainability Course Submission

The list of classes is constantly being updated so make sure to check back regularly!

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Northern Arizona University received its 9th LEED Certification

Northern Arizona University’s Liberal Arts building was recently awarded LEED Gold Certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. The LEED rating system is the foremost certification program for buildings, homes and communities that are designed, constructed, maintained and operated for improved environmental and human health performance.

“Making our buildings more efficient and healthier for its occupants is a top priority here at NAU,” said NAU’s lead project manager Josh Spears. “Using our resources more efficiently through green building will help protect ecosystems and biodiversity, improve air and water quality, and help mitigate climate change, all while lowering operating costs.”

The Liberal Arts building includes the departments of History and English as well as University Writing Programs. The renovations were started in May 2011 and conducted by Kinney Construction Services (KCS). The project was funded by the SPEED package from the state of Arizona. Apart from some minor upgrades to the third floor a few years ago, this is the first renovation of the Liberal Arts building since it was built in 1963.

The design team Bustamante Kelly Collaborative paired up with LEED consultant Ronald Hand of E/FECT Sustainable Design Solutions to make the certification happen.  Renovations of the building included new HVAC and sprinkler systems, two exterior stairwells, fire and safety upgrades, new audio/visual equipment for each classroom, and two new lecture rooms, including a new cinema screening space that will house 200 people. Cosmetic upgrades include new carpet, paint, wood paneling, tile floors, updated bathrooms and a student lounge with a flat-screen television and vending machines. Liberal Arts Building Apart from the updated classroom and office space provided by the expansion and renovation of the Liberal Arts Building, energy and water efficiency were other key components of this project. Although LEED certification was not in the original renovation plan, Spears and NAU’s Planning Designing and Construction department were confident it could be achieved with of the following add-on building characteristics.

Energy efficiency

  • Reduced lighting power density to 15 percent below normal optimizes energy performance.
  • Lighting control allows for more responsible use of energy.
  • Control of efficient heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems and equipment within the building.

Construction

  • Up to 75 percent of construction waste was diverted from landfills.
  • Up to 20 percent of the total materials used in the construction came from recycled content.
  • Up to 20 percent of the total materials were manufactured regionally.

Reduced building impact

  • Works within the space allotted to the existing building to create a denser development area.
  • Maintains 40 percent of interior non-structural components.
  • Materials with low-emission of chemicals and pollutants were used for sealants, paints, carpet systems, or wood/laminate adhesives.

Water efficiency

  • Water usage within the building was reduced by at least 30 percent.

Technology

  • Lighting, temperature and ventilation, compliance, and monitoring systems are all fully controllable to allow for appropriate usage of these systems depending on the time of year and day.

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The NAU Sustainability Course Directory Has Been Launched!

The NAU Office of Sustainability is excited to introduce the NAU Sustainability Course Directory – a new online database system for all the courses from any department that are focused on sustainability or simply have a sustainability component in them. Both undergraduate and graduate students can now enjoy a constantly updated list of classes that cover a wide range of topics related to environmental, cultural, economic, and social sustainability.

The courses are submitted by their instructors using a specially designated online form. After being approved by our administrator, the course appears in the online database and can be looked up using a convenient search engine that provides 3 criteria options that helps a student find a better fit.

The challenge of spreading awareness about sustainability and creating an environmentally conscious behavior always comes down to nurturing eco-literacy. In order to provide a deeper understanding of the global climate change challenges we face nowadays, NAU is attempting to ease an access to the list of classes that serve as an educational tool about that issue and offers diverse strategies of addressing it. The introduction of this course listing system is a great step towards creating a culture of sustainability in the Northern Arizona University, bringing a better understanding of the need for a more environmentally responsible behavior to its students.

Useful links:
For NAU students - NAU Sustainability Course Directory
For course instructors - Sustainability Course Submission

The list of classes is constantly being updated so make sure to check back regularly!

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3 Environmental Stewardship Positions Are to be Filled!

NAU Civic Service Institute is excited to announce the three full-time AmeriCorps positions that are to be filled by the beginning of August. Please see below for their brief descriptions or click on each title for a detailed information about each of the NAU’s Environmental Stewardship positions:

The Bicycle Program Coordinator at Northern Arizona University would be responsible for promoting transportation on campus, primarily bicycle usage, to reduce drive-alone commute trips in an effort to improve access to and mobility through campus, reduce vehicular congestion, and improve/maintain student safety.

The purpose of this position is to help the Green NAU Energy Initiative improve waste minimization infrastructure and processes. This involves working with various university stakeholders on many facets of the recycling and waste system. The position will work to inspire and motivate campus users to recognize the importance and need for resource conservation and reduce, reuse, recycle principles.

This coordinator will work with multiple environmental offices, departments, and clubs across campus and the community to spread awareness and increase participation in the diverse variety of existing sustainable clubs and initiatives. The coordinator will use NAU’s recently revised Sustainable Action Plan as a guide book to improving and promoting initiatives pertaining to Recycling and Waste Minimization, Transportation, Operations, Procurement, Water, Energy and Climate Change, Academics, and Research.

Learn more about Flagstaff AmeriCorp: http://nau.edu/SBS/CSI/AmeriCorps/
Learn more about NAU’s three Environmental Stewardship positions: http://nau.edu/Green-NAU/

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It’s Time to Leave Green!

Leave GreenNow that the end of the semester is rapidly approaching, many students who live in the residence halls will be moving out in a few short days. What do you do with those perfectly good items? Don’t throw them away! Donate your unwanted goods and Leave Green!

Donation bins can be found in the main lobby of your building or in the clubhouse/office for the apartment areas. Make sure the food you donate has not expired. We cannot accept futon mattresses, mattress toppers, or hangers.

The clothing, furniture, book, and household items donations will benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters. The non-perishable food donations will benefit Sunshine Rescue Mission. Since the Leave Green program started in 2010, students have donated over 130,000 pounds of items. Last year was our biggest year ever with over 44,000 pounds of donations!

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News That Goes Against the Original Paradigm

Check out what NAU has found out!

Link: http://news.nau.edu/study-finds-accelerated-soil-carbon-loss-increasing-rate-climate-change/#.U2FYOK1dV8t

Article:

Research published inScience found that increased levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere cause soil microbes to produce more carbon dioxide, accelerating climate change.

Two Northern Arizona University researchers led the study, which challenges previous understanding about how carbon accumulates in soil. Increased levels of CO2accelerate plant growth, which causes more absorption of CO2 through photosynthesis.

Until now, the accepted belief was that carbon is then stored in wood and soil for a long time, slowing climate change. Yet this new research suggests that the extra carbon provides fuel to microorganisms in the soil whose byproducts (such as CO2) are released into the atmosphere, contributing to climate change.

“Our findings mean that nature is not as efficient in slowing global warming as we previously thought,” said Kees Jan van Groenigen, research fellow at the Center for Ecosystem Science and Society at NAU and lead author of the study. “By overlooking this effect of increased CO2 on soil microbes, models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change may have overestimated the potential of soil to store carbon and mitigate the greenhouse effect.”

In order to better understand how soil microbes respond to the changing atmosphere, the study’s authors utilized statistical techniques that compare data to models and test for general patterns across studies. They analyzed published results from 53 different experiments in forests, grasslands and agricultural fields around the world. These experiments all measured how extra COin the atmosphere affects plant growth, microbial production of carbon dioxide, and the total amount of soil carbon at the end of the experiment.

“We’ve long thought soils to be a stable, safe place to store carbon, but our results show soil carbon is not as stable as we previously thought,” said Bruce Hungate, director of the Center for Ecosystem Science and Society at NAU and study author. “We should not be complacent about continued subsidies from nature in slowing climate change.”

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