Opinion

Is UM really ‘Going Green’?

So, the university is “going green,” it seems. I agree that constructing eco-friendly buildings is a step in the right direction, but I believe it is fairly ridiculous to declare that UM is going “green” solely because of its future construction projects and use of electric transportation carts; in fact, I find it almost ironic considering the state of current environmentally-friendly policies (or lack thereof) on campus. Constructing “green” buildings certainly reduces UM’s negative environmental impact and sets precedents for the future, but there are more important environmental issues affecting campus that must be addressed first-principally, recycling.

As you may know, UM does have a commingling (aluminum, glass, and plastic) recycling program in the residential colleges, as well as paper recycling at a few sparse locations on campus. The university also has programs to recycle used batteries, oil, tires, and other maintenance items. These efforts do reduce the amount of waste that UM produces, but not nearly as much as they could. Too often, I have walked by trash cans on campus and seen bottles piled up inside. I certainly don’t blame the students for this, as they truly have limited options for disposal. I believe that UM students believe in recycling and other environmentally sustainable activities, but they don’t have the adequate means to carry them out.

It is in my opinion that the university is going about this in the wrong way, and it’s possible that they care more about the public image than the substance behind it. Their plan is to build in such a way that the amount of natural resources used, pollution produced, and energy consumed will be cut down in the future. Why not right now? To successfully become an environmentally-friendly institution, UM must address all facets of the issue. Expanding the recycling program will certainly have its costs, but compared to the $90 million being spent on the first “green” building, I don’t think it’s too much to ask for. Recycling, as one of the most important aspects of the environmental movement, should be at the forefront of the university’s “green” revolution. The benefits of recycling to the campus community most definitely outweigh the costs.

Miles Kenney-Lazar is a sophomore majoring in ecosystem science and policy and geography. He may be contacted at m.kenneylazar@umiami.edu

October 10, 2006

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

It sure sounds like redshirt freshman N’Kosi Perry is going to get his first career start at 8 Thurs ...

If he hasn’t made it already, Miami Hurricanes coach Mark Richt has a defining decision to ponder in ...

They were way below the radar coming into the 1983 season. And after their 28-3 opening-game loss to ...

In the opening eight minutes on Saturday — and the final seven minutes — FIU looked like a team that ...

The N’Kosi Perry era is here. Whether it’s here to stay is yet to be seen. The fans got what they wa ...

Get Out The Vote, a nonpartisan initiative headed by the Division of Student Affairs and the Butler ...

University of Miami Libraries commemorates Banned Books Week with a special event and display. ...

A year after UPup’s founding father met his match, the service club is realizing its goal of becomin ...

UM students, faculty and staff commemorated the five-year anniversary of the Donna E. Shalala Studen ...

Miami’s Turnover Chain inspires copycats, but the U’s turnover prop has a ‘cool factor.’ ...

The Miami Hurricanes were one of the biggest risers in both major polls released Sunday, jumping to ...

Estela Perez-Somarriba of the Miami women's tennis team earned one of the most prestigious coll ...

The University of Miami volleyball program defeated Duke, 3-1, winning its fourth straight match and ...

N'Kosi Perry and a dominant Miami defense led the Hurricanes to a 31-17 victory over the Panthe ...

The season-opening, three-day Miami Fall Invite wrapped up Sunday at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center a ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.