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Newsletter Archive

Sustainability Resources for Teaching, Learning, Doing

There are numerous entry points into the realm of sustainability with its many connected issues.  Whether you are teaching a class or teaching yourself, Sustainable Brookhaven can point toward useful resources on the webpage

Check out the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.  These 17 wide-ranging goals offer a way into sustainability for any course.  SDG resources can be found on Sustainable DCCCD as well as Sustainable Brookhaven's.  Interestingly, students in Brookhaven's International Club also are studying the SDGs this year.

Using this year's Open Book selection?  You will locate the intersections of sustainability and veterans issues on Sustainable Brookhaven's teaching resources page.

Hurricane Harvey has, unfortunately, connected dots between urban development, climate change and resiliency planning.  This article by ProPublica and The Texas Tribune provides a great case study for further discussions.

Waste Reduction, More than Recycling

If it can't be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, composted or recycled then it should be restricted, redesigned or removed from production. - Berkeley Ecology Center

For many people, recycling is the introduction to sustainable living.  It is a tangible act toward an improved environment.  But as the quote above indicates, recycling is not the first step toward waste minimization; in fact, it may be nearer the end of a list of options we have when dealing with so much stuff.

Toward Zero Waste will be a three-part learning experience Sept. 26-28 designed to introduce and promote ways to improve and take steps beyond simple recycling.  Participate in an information fair, a waste demonstration and a short film festival to learn how to move toward zero waste.  Plus, collect reusable freebies and register for prizes. 

Sept. 26 – Toward Zero Waste Info Fair, 11:30 a.m.-1:45 p.m., Student Services Center, Bldg. S
Community exhibitors will explain many ways to get rid of your stuff.

  • Backyard composting – City of Farmers Branch
  • Kitchen composting with worms (vermiculture) – Mountain View College
  • Food recovery – Environmental Protection Agency
  • Textiles, home appliances, computers – Goodwill Industries. They will collect items while on campus.   
  • Recycling – Recycle Revolution
Enjoy free popcorn. Receive a reusable shopping bag or drink container while supplies last.

Sept. 27 – Recycle Right at Brookhaven, 11:30 a.m.-1:45 p.m., Student Services Center, Bldg. S, at the north entrance
See why our recycling diversion rate is so rotten. Learn what you can do to improve it. 

Sept. 28 – Toward Zero Waste Short Films Festival, Noon-1:20 p.m., Student Services Center, Rm. S003
Bring your lunch and enjoy a variety of videos about how to live with less.  We will provide the movie popcorn.

Monarch Migration

The state insect of Texas, the orange-winged monarch butterfly, is threatened.  Habitat destruction and urbanization have contributed to the species' declining numbers. Federal and state agencies, non-profit organizations and butterfly lovers throughout North America are working to protect the species through habitat restoration and by developing monarch waystations – gardens that provide nectar plants and milkweed – along the route of its annual round-trip migration from Mexico to Canada. Brookhaven's Windmill Garden is an official Monarch Waystation.

As the monarchs head south through Texas this month, learn more about their amazing migration and what you can do to provide habitat and contribute to simple scientific observation. Attend one or more of these short lunchtime presentations.

Sept. 12 – Gardening for Monarchs, 12:15-:15 p.m., Windmill Garden (west of P5 parking lot)

Amy Monroy, Windmill Garden coordinator, shares tips about creating a waystation.

Sept. 19 – The Miracle of Monarch, 12:15-1:15 p.m., X2008
Janet Smith, Master Naturalist, shares her monarch knowledge and enthusiasm.

Oct. 3 – Monitor the Migration: Monarch Tagging and iNaturalist, 12:15-1:15 p.m., Windmill Garden
Master Naturalist Melanie Schuchart teaches how to play a role in the migration.


Arbor Day – Service Project + Tree Planting + Hotdog Lunch

Be part of Brookhaven's fifth annual Arbor Day observance Oct. 13.  The half-day of activities will focus attention on our campus forest – working on approximately 95 recently installed trees, planting a new burr oak at Bldg. W with special guest, Robert Dye, mayor of Farmers Branch, and celebrating together with an informal lunch. As a designated Tree Campus USA by the Arbor Day Foundation, Brookhaven is committed educating about the value of trees to the urban environment.

To volunteer or attend the programs, check the details of the day's agenda:

Service project – 9-11 a.m.  Meet at Budg. H.  Students and employees can volunteer in advance for this Good NeighBear project.
Tree-planting – approximately 11-11:30 a.m. at Bldg. W.
Lunch – following the tree-plating at Bldg.W while supplies last.


7th Annual DCCCD Sustainability Summit Set for Nov. 3

Hosted at Cedar Valley College, the Summit will focus on the timely theme, "Sustainable Cities/Resilience/Environmental Justice".  The keynote speaker will be Mustafa Santiago Ali, a senior vice president at the Hip Hop Caucus. His talk is titled "Moving Vulnerable Communities from Surviving to Thriving."  The Hip Hop Caucus connects the Hip Hop community to the civic process to build power and create positive change. Ali leads the strategic direction, expansion and operation of the Hip Hop Caucus' portfolio on climate, environmental justice and community revitalization.

The all-day conference also will include numerous presentations by community sustainability leaders.  The Summit is free and lunch will be provided.  Van transportation from Brookhaven will be provided.

Check here for more information about the Summit.


Windmill Garden

The native plant and pollinator garden is thriving!  Drop by to enjoy the many blossoms, bees, butterflies.  And, include this environmental resource in your course.  Make it a place to journal, photograph, conduct hands-on research, or introduce your students to the natural world.  Amy Monroy, garden coordinator, can collaborate with you or conduct a tour.  Contact her at amonroy@dcccd.edu.


Green Team Coalition

Students can build their resumes with leadership activities focused on sustainability.  Monthly meetings will be Oct. 18, and Nov. 15 from 1:30-2:30 p.m. in Rm S003.