Happy Earth Day 2019

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska Around the world, many are celebrating Monday April 22, 2019 as 'Earth Day.'

Earth Day Fair 2010 (Credit UAF Ambassadors)

On the Roof of the Lola Tilly building at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, on-campus and local organizations took advantage of the mid-day sunshine to celebrate and advocate for sustainability.
Breanne Meath is a student assistant for the office of sustainability, she said she spends most of her time organizing the free store on campus.

"Keeping our communities happy and healthy is defiantly the mission that we are going for in the sustainability office, so it's beyond just recycling," said Meath.

Meath said there are many resources in town available for those who want to know more about how others in the community are making a big difference for Fairbanks sustainability, such as community gardens, various recycling facilities, and agencies that provide services for the Interior. There is even a recycling program at the University that helps to lower the accumulation of aluminum, plastics, mixed paper, e-waste such as computers, printers, cell phones and tablets and other wired appliances. They also recycle clothing and printer ink. Working together with other recycling facilities to keep these items out of Borough landfills.

"Yes we are recycling and people are going to consume plastics, and we get that but if there are other ways for us to reduce the need for recycling before it gets to that point that is definitely a big focus," said Meath.

The University now has a glass crusher on campus that they use to break down glass and repurpose it.

"We can do it in limited amounts, but some if it is being sent to the art department and some to facility services for various projects so it’s really cool to see that material broken back down and that can be used again," she said.

Meath also affirmed there are a lot of ways to get out and help and with trash pick-up day just around the corner on May 11th. Yellow and green bags can be picked up at several location around Fairbanks.

"Get a team together, claim an area that you care about or that you drive by every day so that you can actually see the work that you put in and see the transformation from a litter covered area to grass showing and flowers blooming because it's not drowning in litter," said Meath.

She said every little action makes a difference, it doesn't have to be big, and sometimes the small stuff make the biggest difference in the long run.