The Environmentalist’s Oasis in a Green Desert: Earth Week at Colorado College

By HANK BEDINGFIELD

During first week of  Block 8, Earth Week hits the campus of Colorado College with a flurry of events and activities. Expanding beyond “Earth Day,” which occurs officially on Monday, April 22, the Office of Sustainability and a network of allies are hosting a week of awareness and conservation.

This front of environmentalist fervor on our campus occurs in a city with a large population whose opinions on climate change range from indifference to denial.

Congressman Doug Lamborn, representative of Colorado’s 5th district, which includes Colorado Springs, is hesitant to credit humanity with having a role in climate change. Lamborn believes that there are “a lot of contentious facts and claims about global warming and whether it is manmade.” He has also pledged to oppose any climate legislation that generates more government revenue at the expense of taxpayers.

In the face of this direct opposition, leaders of Earth Week are determined to move forward with their own narrative. “This is an important week for the Colorado Springs community as a whole because it is providing a pro-environment space within the city,” said Quinn Yawger ’20, Office of Sustainability marketing intern. “The community will be exposed to it and understand that there are people within Colorado Springs that care fervently for the environment and are actively combating climate change, even if their elected officials are not playing that part.”

Yawger is driven to provide an environmentalist outlet and set an example for the whole community.

She highlighted the “Trash Peak” and “Linnemann Lecture Series” as must-attend events. The “Trash Peak,” hosted by the Office of Sustainability, involves sorting through a day’s worth of CC’s trash in what will undoubtedly be an eye-opening and humbling experience.

 This event occurs Monday, April 22 from 11:30 to 1:30 p.m. outside of Worner Campus Center. 

On the evening of April 25 from 6–7 p.m., professor Diana Linneman will address students and staff at a dinner lecture in the Cornerstone Arts Center. In a lecture titled “Climate Change and Sustainable Development: How Can We Limit Global Warming, Reduce Climate Risks, and Achieve Global Goals for Development,” she will attempt to confront modern issues of climate change in the context of global development. Liverman is lauded an “expert on the human dimensions of global environmental change and the impacts of climate on society,” as reported by the CC Office of Sustainability website.

To close out a full week, the Tree Advisory Committee is sponsoring Arbor Day on Friday, April 26 at 12:30 p.m. on Tava Quad. Apart from a great excuse to enjoy what will hopefully be a sunny day, this event provides an opportunity to plant a few trees and receive a free t-shirt. Be sure to check it out. 

This upcoming Earth Week is made possible by State of the Rockies, Outdoor Education, Bon Appétit, the Environmental Studies Program, the Tree Advisory Committee, and CC Swap Space. More comprehensive information on all the events can be found on the Office of Sustainability page on CC’s website.  

Illustration by Lo Wall

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