For the season of Lent, SGA and Terra Nova, Northwestern’s ecology club, are co-sponsoring a student-led initiative called ConServe.
Beginning Wednesday, Feb. 17, and continuing through April 10, students, faculty and staff are encouraged to participate in this initiative to conserve water, gas and electricity consumption on campus. The money saved in this three-month period will be sent to a non-profit organization of the students’ choosing.
“ConServe is an attempt to empower the campus to be more responsible with consumption of our resources and move toward becoming better stewards of this earth,” said SGA President Wes Garcia. “This initiative is service, conservation and sacrifice—the acknowledgement and reduction of use in an effort to help others.”
ConServe hopes to revive Christ-like understanding of environmental stewardship, compassion for the poor and a sense of unity with our campus community by offering the proceeds of our conservation to those in need.
SGA and Terra Nova have produced a list of ways to conserve including shortening shower times, turning off the lights whenever students leave their rooms, turning off computers at night and between classes, running classrooms on half the lights, turning dorm hallway lights off during the day, unplugging gaming systems between uses and turning down the thermostat.
Junior Jordan Gammon said, “I think this is a good idea, and I want to contribute by taking shorter showers and watching my use of water from day to day.”
The goal for this semester is to reduce campus consumption by 15%, making the estimated savings to be given $21,519.12. After the savings have been assessed, students, faculty and staff will have the opportunity to choose an organization that will receive the gift. SGA will send out an email to notify the campus when it is time to choose an organization.
The campus community will have the opportunity to nominate a non-profit organization, submitting a short description of the organization and why it should receive the gift. The nominees will be reviewed, and SGA will pick some to be put up for a vote with the top five presented to the administrative council.
Garcia said, “My hope is for the money to stay local. Many students volunteer their time and talents in our area, and it would be great to see our community benefit from our efforts here on campus.”
Students can for emails and advertisements around campus for more information and encouragement to participate in ConServe.