SGA develops new Green Initiative

Staff Writer

The student government has formed a partnership with Students for Sustainability to put forth a Green Initiative that plans to increase campus sustainability.

Student Senators Harrison Hadland and Octavio Sanchez have teamed up with Students for Sustainability co-Presidents Andy Hirschfeld and Janelle Sylvester to push the Green Initiative forward.

“The Green Initiative is a plan that originated within Students for Sustainability and is being supported by Student Government as a part of our goals for a more sustainable campus,” said Juliann Butz, communication director of SGA. “Students for Sustainability is the leading force behind implementation of a Green Initiative at St. Edward’s University.”

Together, the two organizations are working to push the Green Initiative forward in unprecedented ways.

“St. Edward’s prides itself on sustainability, but they do not have a green fund. Most other schools in Texas, such as UT, Texas Tech, or St. Mary’s have one,” Hirschfeld said. “The fees for these funds vary. Some universities charge students $100 of extra tuition. We would charge students $5 to $15, which would be put into a pool of money. This money would be managed by students and funded by students working together for a wholesale approach to sustainability.”

This wholesale approach has widened the scale of the Green Initiative and aims to vastly increase its influence.

“A big goal is student involvement,” Sylvester said. “Students would almost entirely run the fund, with some faculty assistance.”

According to both Hirschfeld and Sylvester, the fund would receive both state and federal assistance equal to the amount that students gave to the fund. 

There are multiple examples of the ways the Green Initiative would improve campus life.

“Vice President Nairod Woods is working to get water bottle filling stations installed in various campus locations,” Butz said. “Senator Perouza Parsamian is currently exploring the issue of a lack of recycling bins on campus.”

Other tentative plans include solar panels and ways to make buildings more sustainable. One particular notion is the plan to expand the garden and compost Bon Appétit’s food scraps, according to Sylvester.

Sylvester and Hirschfeld hope to put an online vote for funding the Green Initiative after the end of next semester and will be tabling for the initiative in Ragsdale.

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