UMass Amherst to Mark October as Sustainability Month with Speakers, Activities and Events

AMHERST, Mass. – October will be celebrated as Sustainability Month at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, which will highlight its continued commitment to sustainability through film screenings, special presentations, group discussions, student activities, and a Halloween reuse clothing sale. The events are organized by multiple departments and cover a variety of issues related to sustainability.

Scheduled events include:

·         Screening of “INHABIT: A Permaculture Perspective,” Thursday, Oct. 1, 7 p.m., 26th floor Du Bois Library. Focused mostly on the Northeastern and Midwestern regions of the U.S., “INHABIT” provides an intimate look at permaculture people and their practices. Opening remarks from Lisa Depiano, Stockbridge School of Agriculture, and permaculture instructor. A brief discussion will follow the film.

·         EPA Game Day Challenge - Take a Minute ... Man and Recycle! Saturday, Oct. 3 and Saturday, Oct. 17, four hours before each football game. McGuirk Alumni Stadium. UMass Amherst is working to be more sustainable by participating in the EPA Game Day Challenge. During tailgating at McGuirk Alumni Stadium recycling bins are available to decrease the amount of waste that is sent to landfills. Student volunteers will be on site to assist tailgaters in making the campus greener.

·         Annual Eco-Rep Trash Sort, Tuesday, Oct. 13, 10 a.m.–2 p.m., Student Union lawn. Undergraduates from the UMass Eco-Rep program will don protective suits and sort through trash that has been taken from all the residential areas on campus. The event raises awareness about what we throw away and demonstrate how the new implementation of Single Stream Recycling across campus can make recycling an everyday activity.

·         “Passive House: Conservation-focused Design,” Thursday, Oct. 15, 3 p.m., Massachusetts Room, Mullins Center. Amy Finlayson, project manager with the state Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance discusses the principles of Passive House and how they can be applied to public projects in the Commonwealth. Passive House is a voluntary performance-based design standard focused on significant energy efficiency, ecological impact, cost savings and thermal comfort using quantifiable data. There is no building typology; the Passive House standard can be applied across the building industry successfully. Seating is limited, RSVP to

·         “Talking Truth:  Finding Your Voice around the Climate Crisis,” Friday, Oct. 16, 12:30 p.m., TBA. An open discussion focused on climate disruption as it relates to teaching, learning and personal agency.

·         Sustainable Halloween Costume Sale, Thursday, Oct. 22, 5-10 p.m. & Friday, Oct. 23, 10 a.m.-10 p.m., 162 Campus Center. A Halloween sale of reused clothing. Save money and be sustainable at the same time. Choose from the “pre-assembled” assortment of fabulous costumes or personalize your own in our DIY section. Show your creativity during the #UMassHalloween Instagram event.

·         Garlic Planting Day, Friday, Oct. 23, 9:30-11:30 a.m., Franklin Permaculture Gardens. Get your hands dirty by joining the UMass Permaculture team in planting garlic bulbs. Learn more about how food is grown and celebrate UMass Amherst’s diverse locally grown campus food gardens.

·         “Campus Green Building Resources: LEED and Beyond,” Monday, Oct. 26, 1 p.m., 917 Campus Center, and Friday, Oct. 30, 9 a.m., 911 Campus Center. Ludmilla Pavlova-Gillham, senior campus planner, will review the commitment UMass Amherst has made to sustainable design and construction and the range of sustainability/LEED resources available to campus staff, faculty and students as they work on planning, designing and constructing a sustainable campus. To learn more:

          Integrative Learning Center Tour, Wednesday, Oct. 28, 5 p.m. in East Lobby of ILC. The Integrative Learning Center is a LEED Gold certified facility that opened last fall. A tour of the building will explore the remarkable new facility and review sustainability features such as landscaping and rainwater management, energy use reductions, natural ventilation, and many other strategies.