Green Space

greenSpaceThere has been a lot of talk recently about insects being the new sustainable source of protein, as they have a high nutritive value and a ubiquitous presence. However, there is another source of sustainable protein that is being produced daily and thrown away without a second thought. The human placenta, the organ that connects the fetus to the uterine wall, can be cooked, sliced, dehydrated, encapsulated into a pill, or frozen in small chunks that can be blended into a smoothie.

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Green Space December 2013

Green Space is for anyone who wants to contribute to or learn about green initiatives at Olin and the world. Want to submit an article about green initiatives? Please do! Want to learn how you can make a difference in your own life or at Olin? Easy!

Please, read on and listen well, because, you know, this is your world too.

Is your meat habit killing the planet?

Maybe.

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Green Space: Dumpster-Diver’s Dilemma

greenSpaceco-authored by: Maggie Sue

Everyone at Olin has come into the dorm lounges only to find themselves surrounded by piles of bread, post-Valentine’s day candy, pizza, and other miscellaneous foods. There exists a small group of Oliners who regularly collect these treasures from local stores that run low on shelf space, find packaging imperfections, or dispose of food nearing its sell-by date. However, there is much more to this practice than happily collecting a dumpster’s contents.

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Green Space: Life in the Context of Development

greenSpaceTake a bucket shower. Better yet, take a bucket shower in a small tub with no drain. Feel how much water is needed to cleanse your body as the weight of the bucket in your hand diminishes. Note how filthy you are capable of becoming without ever noticing, and wonder how the dirty water feels so refreshing on your feet, swollen from walking miles on uneven grounds. In this moment, this bucket of water is my most cherished treasure.

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Sustainability Skill Sharing

april2013_skillshareIn an ever more technologically complex world, we struggle and strive to understand the vast supply chains and innovate. Not often enough to we step back and think about what we know that is simple and tangible. We are all teachers and we are all students.

Collectively, we have an incredible amount of life experiences and knowledge that has taught us and shaped us. On Saturday April 6th Olin will be hosting the Three-College Skill Share. It is a day of workshops, discussions and expos around the idea of learning and teaching practical skills to reduce our impact on the environment.

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Green Space: March

greenSpaceBikes are better than cars. They are touted for their health benefits to both the individual and the planet, but those arguments are cliche and unheeded. Though more exist, I use two facets of bicycles to justify my riding and hope that you will too.

The first is that of scale. Simply put, bikes are on the human scale. Remind yourself that power lost to wind, which accounts for 90% of a vehicle’s mechanical effort, is related to a body’s frontal area and velocity-cubed. Bikes are on the order of the ideal size, in that making a bike smaller would have little effect on the frontal area of the rider-vehicle system.

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Invest Yourself in the Earth

Welcome to your first day on the job. Our clients are heavily invested in the performance of a vast endowment which you will be overseeing. This endowment is an enormously diversified portfolio with incomparably-complex instruments—we call it “Earth”. Said endowment comprises all of this world’s natural systems and actors, from the depths of its crust to the outer reaches of its atmosphere.

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Green Space: December

greenSpaceSwarm Theory & Sustainability: What does it take to be sustainable? Top-down political action? Bottom-up grass-roots movements? More electric vehicles? These approaches are all too narrow. As I see it, the direction of the global human society is the weighted sum of each individual decision.

This concept is swarm theory applied to sustainability: like fish in a school, each individual bases actions on a small set of rules, and individual actions move the group. The mass’s direction is determined by initial conditions and the values held by each unit. Embedding the necessary tenets is the role of education, both formal and otherwise.

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Helping Olin be Sustainable

This summer, we worked with Facilities to improve sustainability and stewardship at Olin. Our overarching goal was for Olin’s monetary, environmental, and proprietary resources to be managed and maintained more responsibly. We realized that we could work on many sustainability and stewardship efforts, but they would founder if we did not achieve community-wide involvement. Thus, our true goal was to not only begin sustainable projects, but also to make it easy for everyone to get involved.

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