In celebration of Earth Day 2013, Bemidji State University student organizations and departments are working together to raise awareness of environmental and sustainability issues on campus. The University is sponsoring a series of Earth Week activities that will run from April 17-26 with a bonus event on May 2.
All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.
• April 17 – 6 p.m – Screening of the film, “The Island President,” in Hagg-Saur 100. “The Island President” is the story of President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives, a man confronting a problem greater than any other world leader has ever faced – the literal survival of his country and everyone in it. After bringing democracy to the Maldives after 30 years of despotic rule, Nasheed is now faced with an even greater challenge: as one of the most low-lying countries in the world, a rise of three feet in sea level would submerge the 1200 islands of the Maldives enough to make them uninhabitable.
The Bemidji State event is one of 116 screenings of the film worldwide on April 17, designated by the filmmakers as a “national day of action” focused around the politics of climate change. For more information about the film, visit http://theislandpresident.com.
April 20 – 9 a.m. – “Stride into Spring” 5k/10k run/walk at the Gillett Recreation-Fitness Center. Participants are eligible to win $100 towards a pair of shoes.
Earth Day – April 22 – 7 p.m. – Documentary film screening, “Thin Ice,” in Hagg-Saur 100. In recent years climate science has come under increasing scrutiny, so geologist Simon Lamb took his camera to find out what is really going on from his climate science colleagues. He followed scientists at work in the Arctic, Antarctic, Southern Ocean, New Zealand, Europe and the United States. They talk about their work, and their hopes and fears, with candor and directness, creating an intimate portrait of a global community of researchers racing to understand our planet’s changing climate. For more information, visit http://thiniceclimate.org.
April 23 – 5:30-7:30 p.m. – Panel discussion on Minnesota’s bill to require labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), held in Hagg-Sauer 112. The panel of students, local grocers, local farmers and policy experts will discuss the bill and issues surrounding genetic engineering and its impact on the health of people and the environment.
April 24 – 5 p.m. – Bike maintenance workshop in Memorial Hall 100, sponsored by the Sustainability Office. Interested participants are encouraged to sign up in advance in BSU’s Sustainability Office in the lower Hobson Memorial Union; bikes will be serviced on a first-come, first-served basis.
April 24 – 7 p.m. – Documentary film screening, “Garbage Island,” in Hagg-Sauer 100. The film recounts a trip to a section of the Pacific Ocean called the Gyre, where various currents and eddies swirl around a continuous high-pressure zone, drawing in water – and the debris it carries – from across the entire ocean. The Gyre has now become a Texas-sized island of garbage, which in some locations contains higher concentrations of plastic than seawater. Free popcorn will be available. For more information, visit http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/garbage-island.
April 25 – 5:30 p.m. – Documentary film screening, “Vegucated,” in Hagg-Sauer 107, followed by a panel discussion on vegetarian food. Learn basic information about vegitarian eating, ask questions of student panelists and try a variety of vegitarian recipes. Part sociological experiment and part adventure comedy, “Vegucated” follows three meat- and cheese-loving New Yorkers who agree to adopt a vegan diet for six weeks. Lured by tales of weight lost and health regained, they begin to uncover the hidden sides of animal agriculture that make them wonder whether solutions offered in films like “Food, Inc.” go far enough. The film screening and panel discussion are open free to the public. For more information on the film, visit http://www.getvegucated.com.
May 2 – 1-6 p.m. – Bemidji State’s Sustainability Office is sponsoring a collection event for unused or unwanted electronic devices. Electronics contain heavy metals and other environmental toxins and should be correctly disposed of. Electronics collected at this event will be properly recycled by 5R Processing, Ltd., at its facility in Wisconsin. Anyone may drop electronics off at Paul Bunyan Park by the Paul and Babe statues during this event; there is no charge.
Earth Week activities at Bemidji State are sponsored by the Bemidji State Students for the Environment, the Sustainability Office, Horizontally Challenged, ARAMARK, the Outdoor Program Center, Minnesota Green Corp, Indigenous Environmental Network, Bobcat of Bemidji, and the Green Fee.
For more information, contact Erika Bailey-Johnson, BSU sustainability coordinator, (218) 755-2650.