From recycling to composting to bike and car sharing, students, faculty and staff of the University of Arizona are engaged on all fronts in pursuing a more sustainable way of life. In 2012, the University earned an ASHEE STARS Gold rating for campus sustainability. Now, the Princeton Review has named the UA as one of the top green colleges in the nation.
What would you do if you were caught in a dust storm? Even with all our sunshine, Arizona can host some spectacular dust storms, and these events of environmental entropy can lead to poor visibility and dangerous driving conditions. Now, with a new free app developed at the UA, helpful hints and immediate alerts are as close as your smartphone.
Judith Bronstein, distinguished professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, has always loved getting outside and studying living things. An expert in the relatively new field of mutualism – the cooperative interaction among organisms and species – she loves asking those questions that have never been asked, and then bringing those new ideas to the next generation of scientists.
After a nearly 5,000-year vigil upon a Nevada mountaintop, an ancient tree now finds its home in the UA Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research. A member of the long-lived Bristlecone pine species, the tree called Prometheus is the oldest individual ever known to have lived. Its age was not accurately known until a few years ago.
Ask Paul Blowers, PhD, why he was originally attracted to the field of chemical engineering, he’ll give you a simple answer: because it was hard. He had seen the discipline get the best of others, and he was determined to be great at it. Today, a UA Distinguished Professor, he now focuses on helping students get the best out of themselves.
Diana Liverman, PhD, University of Arizona Regents' Professor and co-director of the Institute for the Environment, is determined to make a difference. From working with individual graduate students to consulting with the Dalai Lama, Liverman has become a central figure in today’s conversation about global climate change.
When it comes to the studies of climate change and global warming, the world’s leaders are listening to what scientists have to say. At the UA’s Institute of the Environment leading researchers are not only working to understand the big questions, but they are sharing that learning with world leaders like the Dalai Lama to inform policy and implement solutions.
Developing alternative, sustainable energy sources is essential to the future of Arizona, the nation and the world. At the UA, researchers in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences are studying how to optimize sweet sorghum as a bio-fuel crop. The work brings together students and professors, government and industry, and represents an education for all involved.
Molly Hunter, Ph.D., professor of entomology, describes the subjects of her study as "elaborate and colorful and beautiful." Focusing her microscope lens on the sweet potato whitefly, Molly and her students explore enthralling worlds while creating knowledge that is contributing to more environmentally sound pest control. Watch video.>>
As a faculty fellow for the Posada San Pedro residence hall and professor of chemistry and biochemistry, John Pollard, Ph.D., never imagined that his challenge to students to bring solar to the building to reduce the University’s carbon footprint would happen anytime soon. Today, three years on, the Solar Cats have just celebrated the installation of 44 solar panels on the building they called home.
The UA started its car sharing program in 2009. Today, the University has expanded its car and bike sharing programs to cut down on the campus carbon footprint. And with a new Nissan Leaf now in the lineup, students, faculty and staff can share in zero emissions get-up-and-go.
Built in 1986 to develop space colonization technology, Biosphere 2 represents a one-of-a-kind large-scale laboratory for studying the ecology of global climate change. Now, the University of Arizona – through the generosity of CDO Ranching & Development and the Philecology Foundation – will take full ownership of the facility, allowing for even more meaningful, long-term research and experimentation.
“Dirt made my lunch,” sings sophomore Amy Mellor. She’s sitting in a circle of 4-year-olds who have just made kale soup from vegetables grown in their garden. Mellor, a UA geography student, interns at the Ochoa School five mornings a week. “This has far surpassed any expectations that I had for my college experience,” she says. “This is exactly how I want to be learning.”
A sycamore that traveled to the moon as a seed, and a cork oak tree that was used for scavenger hunts are just two of the 21 “heritage trees” on the University of Arizona campus. There’s the strange Mexican boojum and a date palm from Abu Ghraib. The trees hold our history, says Campus Arboretum director Tanya Quist, and they also inspire us to appreciate the present moment.
Old Main, the first building that defined the UA campus, was designed using the most environmentally-sound principles of its day, 125 years ago. Today the Green Fund Committee is taking that same bold vision forward, inspiring and implementing efforts across the University to ensure a better world for generations to come.
No, it’s not time to check your blood pressure or cholesterol. When the House Energy Doctor comes to make one of its free visits, Tucson community residents get structural and engineering health-and-wellness checkups for their houses, and architecture students benefit from real-world experience while helping solve energy woes.
While teaching a class on natural resource policy law, Ed de Steiguer, professor in the School of Natural Resources and the Environment, came across the Wild, Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act. The more he read, the more intrigued he became. Now, he has written a book, "Wild Horses of the West: History and Politics of America’s Mustangs," which he presented on March 12 at the Tucson Festival of Books.
Mops made from recycled soda bottles; a free Bike Share program; Smart Cars and Priuses available on campus for only eight dollars an hour. The University of Arizona is committed to sustainability, and its green initiatives are reducing the campus’s carbon footprint while improving the quality of life for students, faculty and staff.
Archaeologist Pearce Paul Creasman has a passion for trees and the stories they tell. As curator of the UA’s Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research , he is archiving the world’s largest collection of tree ring samples – over 2 million specimens – spanning 8,000 years of history.
A team of scholars at the University of Arizona’s Southwest Center are studying the future of ranching in the region. Folklorist Maribel Alvarez and ethnobotanist Gary Paul Nabhan are documenting new techniques that could lower the carbon footprint of beef production, stimulate the local food economy and nourish the desert ecosystem.