CAMPUS NEWS, LOCAL NEWS, NEWS, TOP STORIES — April 3, 2014 11:49 am

INAUGURAL SUSTAINABILITY EXPO SATURDAY

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Calling attention to the issue of sustainability across the city, the Inaugural Sustainability Expo will be held on Saturday from 10a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Centennial Student Union Ballroom.

The goal of the Sustainability Expo will be to “Help educate and inform community members on how they can be more resilient and environmentally sustainable in the face of the challenges of energy depletion, climate change and economic challenges.”

The program will begin with an opening welcome by the School Sisters of Notre Dame’s Center for Earth Spirituality and Earth Ministry. Sustainability resources, children activities and information tables will be available all day.

Three events will follow at 11:00 a.m.: a sustainable Health and Wellness Panel in CSU room 201 that aims to learn sustainable ways to improving your health and wellness: reducing Waste at Home, School and Work will be in 202, consisting of conversations about composting and recycling that aims to reduce waste in the city and a Bike Maintenance Workshop will be in room 203, that aims to get individuals hands on experience maintaining your bike, with help from Key City Bike.

The lunch hour will be from 12-1:00 p.m. with music, exhibits and networking. Food will also be available for purchase on the main floor of the CSU.

A Local Alternative Energy Projects Panel in room 201, a Minnesota Energy Challenge in room 202 and a Sustainable Food Production Panel in room 203 will follow at 1 p.m.

The Local Alternative Energy Projects Panel will describe local solar projects that are beginning in the city. Attendees will also learn about alternative learning projects that are taking place at Gustavus Adolphus College and the work of the Region Nine Renewable Energy Task Force.

The Minnesota Energy Challenge will provide an action guide for reducing energy waste statewide. Participants will receive tips on staying comfortable and saving money.

The Sustainable Food Production Panel will feature tips on how local food production contributes to sustainability, as well as how a local Food Hub expands food options throughout the community.

A two-hour DIY Solar Air Heater Demo in room 201, a Sustaining the Soul Panel in room 202 and a Non-toxic Home Cleaner Re-skilling Workshop in room 203 will follow at 2 p.m.

The DIY Solar Air Heater Demo will show how solar air heaters reduce natural gas and propane bills. DIY techniques using readily available and recyclable materials will be shown.

The Non-toxic Home Cleaner Re-skilling Workshop will provide tips on how to make safe household cleaners from easily accessible, cheap materials.

A closing presentation will be at three in the CSU Ballroom, an event in which the City of Mankato and Minnesota State University Mankato’s Sustainability Initiatives will collaborate in.

The expo will also spotlight sustainability accomplishments as well as future plans by the City of Mankato and Minnesota State University.

“Coming to this event will provide you helpful information about greenhouse gas inventories and practices that are happening in regards to sustainability that every part of the community is using,” Senior Danielle Alinea said.

Alinea will be running around, running the bike maintenance shop, making sure everything runs smoothly.

The part Alinea is most looking forward to in the expo is the fundamental questions that will be gathered from the process. “I am most looking forward to the effects of the questions the community can come up with to better intrigue our community and to make it more sustainable,” Alinea said.

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