Tag Archives: environment

Free Hankies – Nothing to Sneeze At

You know what’s gross? How much we dispose of unnecessarily every day. According to the Ubyssey, the SUB produces 40 bags of trash every day, just out of the bathrooms. Picture that. Picture your bedroom, full to the ceiling of barely used paper towels. Now imagine that happening every day. I mean, really?

A student project has been created with the intent of reducing the amount of paper towel waste UBC students produce (Ubyssey article here).  They’ve set up a booth in the SUB handing out handkerchiefs in exchange for a donation to the Ancient Forest Alliance (you can also pay five dollars for a prettier hanky, which will help make the project more sustainable in the future).

I picked up mine today, and I think it’s time for a behavioural change.  Yes, it’s a bit easier just to take the available paper towel and throw it out after and not have to worry about washing your hankie or how to dry it after use.  But in a lot of ways, doing things that harm the environment are born out of laziness and convenience. Taking just the little bit of effort here by using that little towel could result in hundreds, maybe thousands of pounds of paper towels not being used. And in turn, less trees would need to be cut down. And more living trees = healthier planet!

A few other ways you can cut out needless disposables out of your life: bring a reusable travel mug for your morning mocha and keep your own chopsticks handy for when you’re craving sushi.  In the kitchen, opt for a rag instead of paper towels and tupperware instead of plastic wrap.

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UBC Botanical Gardens

Vancouver is a stunning place in the spring time, and nowhere is that clearer than in the UBC Botanical Gardens.  My parents were here this weekend to help me pack up my dorm room (which I’ll make a post on later), so for fun we went to the Botanical Gardens.  Rhododendron in all the colours of the rainbow, giant magnolia blossoms, and those iconic BC conifers that reach high into the sky.  And boy, does the air smell fantastic!

Admission to the UBC Botanical Gardens is free for UBC students, but if you’re willing to pay a little more, I would definitely recommend paying the extra fee to go on the Greenheart Canopy Walkway. At its highest point it goes up to 70 feet above the ground, and walking across the swinging bridge is fun! Believe me, I’m afraid of heights and I enjoyed myself!  Plus if you get the guided tour (at no extra cost) you get a lot of great information and insight into the forest around you and the walkway itself.


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Green Living in Residence

Last November, a province-wide competition took place between university residences in which they were encouraged to reduce their energy consumption.  A few days ago, I took part in a focus group hosted by the research team from UBC that created the competition.  What the discussion reminded me was that reducing your energy consumption isn’t something you should only do because of a competition, it’s something you should continue to incorporate into your everyday habits.  Here are some tips for those living in residence that you can do easily every day to reduce your carbon footprint: Continue reading

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