October 2015
The Green Scene@GSU
Check out all the recent happenings with regards to sustainability for the GSU Campus Community.


The Office of Sustainability is encouraging students to consider sustainability topics for their class projects this semester and next, as those projects could be entered into the 11 th annual GSU Undergraduate Research Conference.  The conference will be held Spring Semester, 2016.  Projects will be considered not only for the general awards given by the conference, but also for the newly-instituted sustainability awards.

GSU's Office of Sustainability is partnering with interested faculty and the Honors College staff who administer GSCRC to institute the first ever awards for sustainability-related research projects at the conference.  The plan is to offer seven awards for the most impressive student projects on sustainability/environmental protection issues in the categories of poster presentation (two awards), oral presentation (two awards), art and musical performance (two awards), and "best applied project" that directly helps GSU or the Atlanta community (one award). If funds can be secured this term, the plan is to offer a $100 prize to each of the seven awardees.

Students from all majors are encouraged to apply to GSURC with the approval of their course instructor.  Even though the conference is not until the spring, we are announcing it early in the fall semester so that students have the opportunity to consider selecting sustainability-related topics for any of their course projects this semester.  For more information please contact sustainability@gsu.edu.


Bike Share Program
In 2010, GSU Bikes and Touch the Earth launched a bike share program located at Touch the Earth in the Student Recreation Center.  The program is open to GSU students, faculty and staff and is available at no cost.  Participants are able to rent a bike from Monday-Friday for up to three consecutive days and a helmet, lock, lamps, odometer and rack are provided. There are currently up to fifteen bikes available to rent and the program has been near capacity since it started.  The bikes are in constant demand.  Carson Tortorige, Outdoor Coordinator of Touch the Earth, stated that "Since the inception of this generation of 'Orange Bikes', it has been about 395 days.  In this time, these bikes have been rented a collective total of 843 times for a use of 3,111 days." For more information please contact touchtheearth@gsu.edu.

Bike Riding - Research
GSU received a Community Choices grant from Atlanta Regional Commission to help provide technical assistance to support a campus-wide bicycle plan in February 2014.  According to Dr. Michael Black, Faculty Associate for the Office of Sustainability,  the groundwork  i ncluded collection of data on bike plans at other universities, town hall-type
interactive sessions to get input from members of the university community, discussions with the Student Recreation Center, Central Atlanta Progress, Atlanta Regional Commission, City of Atlanta, and Atlanta Bicycle Coalition, a bike ride around campus with Facilities staff, an Atlanta Bicycle Summit held at GSU, a written survey conducted through University Research of all GSU faculty, staff, and students, and paper surveys of students using the bicycle rental program through Touch-the-Earth at the Student Rec Center.   This work was recognized by the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition and as a result, the Office of Sustainability and Bike Committee earned a Blinkie Award for Best Bicycle Plan in 2015.

Continuing the  work of the project, Dr. Black and Katie Woei-A-Sack, president of Panther Bikes participated and led sessions in Transportation Camp South to get feedback and further input from riders who are not GSU students but ride by GSU campus on the way to other locations and impacted by the campus bike infrastructure around GSU.

Atlanta Bike Challenge for GSU Employees
Love to Ride is currently holding a bike challenge for Atlanta businesses that ends on October 25, 2015 and GSU is now in fourth place of all work teams in its size category!  All employees can represent and help GSU win first place by joining now at the following address www.atlbikechallenge.com.  It is as easy as 1,2,3....(1) sign up - it's free, (2) ride for at least 10 minutes every day between now and October 25  th and (3) log every ride


In the Department of Geosciences, Dr. Jeremy Diem and Graduate Research Assistant Sharon Murphy are conducting a research project focused on using green roofs on the GSU campus as a vehicle for integrating Low Impact Development (LID) practices that can help to offset some of the
undesirable effects that the Atlanta built environment has had on the city ecosystems  and on public health. Working in partnership with the GSU Facilities administration, they have selected the GSU Sports Arena roof as a candidate for a case study on the impact that a green r oof at GSU  may  have on the immediate environment, the extended environment, and on public health outcomes for local residents. The GSU Sports Arena roof provides nearly ¾ acres of usable space that can be converted into one of the largest green roofs in Atlanta.

Georgia State University
Office of Sustainability
75 Piedmont Ave, Suite 750
Atlanta, GA 30303

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