Clubs on Campus: LEAP!
By Aleni MacKarey '16
Published: Thursday, March 7, 2013
Updated: Thursday, March 7, 2013 14:03
LEAP is fresh from its trip to Washington D.C., where two weeks ago members participated in the biggest climate rally in US history.
While rallying, Members of Lafayette Environmental Awareness and Protection joined 35,000 other people in the national’s Capital and 50,000 nationwide.
“It was an eye-opening experience,” Vice President Derek Vill said. “While I was expecting an environmental rally to be full of extremists, I was pleasantly surprised to find people of all backgrounds, classes, and political leanings represented.”
The rally was an opportunity to get ideas about where to take the club in the future. “I also learned a good deal about activism and how college students could get involved in the larger movement against climate change,” Vill said.
If all American newspaper was recycled, we could save about 250,000,000 trees each year!
LEAP is a niche for people interested in the environment. The group has six committees: Carbon, Events, Outreach, Recycling, Garden, and Dining.
Each committee independently organizes and runs its own events. They come together for bigger events.
Members of LEAP are working to strengthen their relationships with each other, with members of the faculty, and with the Easton community to spread awareness and pool their resources for bigger events.
LEAP president Chris Nelsen ‘16 is excited about several events the group is working on for this semester.
LEAP will host two brown bag lunches in Hugel March 11 and 14, addressing Sodexo’s expiring contract with Lafayette and will be an opportunity for students to voice their opinions on the potential change.
Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to watch a TV for three hours - it’s equivalent to half a gallon of gasoline.
Nelsen mentioned the revival of two former LEAP projects.
TREEhouse – The Real Environmental Experience house – is an interest-housing option, “a place for environmental-minded students to live together to develop, test, and improve sustainable life choices in a shared community.”
Additionally, at the Weigh-the-Waste program in Upper Farinon and Marquis Dining Halls, LEAP will weigh all the food scraps and leftovers students throw away after meals.
Starting April 22, LEAP will celebrate Earth Week.
“Plans are still being made, but we anticipate having at least one speaker or brown bag per day along with other environmentally-minded activities,” Nelsen said.
More than 20,000,000 Hershey’s Kisses are wrapped each day, using 133 square miles of tinfoil. All that foil is recyclable!
There have also been plans to help the school and community.
“Recently we’ve done a lot of work in streamlining the recycling efforts throughout the campus, which not only lowers our ecological footprint but can save the school money,” Vill said.
Off-campus, members have visited elementary schools to educate kids on sustainability, teaching them how to decrease their ecological footprint, Vill added.
They have even expanded farther off campus to promote their green initiatives. “Through our recent CFL [Conserve, Fundraise, Learn] exchange and energy saving competition with Lehigh, we’ve made strides in reducing campus energy usage and giving students insight on how to lower their environmental impact and think sustainably.”
Facts courtesy of nbc.com