The Project Green Challenge, an environmentally charged awareness and empowerment competition, is coming to an end.
UWSP currently ranks 12 out of hundreds of participating universities, which is impressive considering its small size and the short notice students were given.
“We found out about it only a week in advance” said Cate Lucas, a residential living green associate. Lucas and others were able to recruit over 100 students during this time. While Lucas juggles the PGC with other commitments, she still found time to complete some challenges.
“I learned a lot from the organic theme on Day 1,” Lucas said. “It asked specific questions and enabled you to tie it to your own life.”
This level of integration into a participant’s own life made the challenge meaningful.
Another theme was personal care products. Lucas learned about dangerous chemicals that have permeated into our homes from an informational video.
A woman narrating the video was tested for chemicals and discovered she was carrying around noticeable amounts of flame retardant chemicals among other pollutants.
“These things are going down the drain and into our water supply,” Lucas said.
This video was procured by storyofstuff.org and was a part of a video series related to environmental lifestyles.
In addition to increasing awareness of different ways to live environmentally friendly, the challenge promoted action.
Alex Thomas, the environmental and sustainability affairs for the Student Government Association recounted the “Zero Waste Day” challenge. Thomas carried a trash bag around with him the entire day and, despite confused looks, he was happy to participate.
Another theme Thomas enjoyed was the sustainable clothing day.
“Even the clothes we buy have an impact. Cotton is the most pesticide and herbicide ridden crop we have,” Thomas said.
“It is tough as a year to year thing,” Thomas said. “But I want it to continue.”
Amusing challenges, enlightening information and a top finish have made this first year for campus-wide PGC participation a success.