On our entry for 25 March we touted some notable greening projects in New York City, including Annie Novak’s rooftop farm. We also noted opportunities for Baltimore’s citizens to get involved in similar projects. Today we follow on with that call-to-action to draw your attention to a couple of festivals and conferences meant to inspire and educate the Baltimore community to strive for environmental and economic sustainability. We also want to offerUniversity’s students, staff, and faculty who recycled 140 tons of materials in the fourth annual “RecycleMania” competition held among Maryland’s institutions of higher learning. They far exceeded their goal of 120 tons, itself an expansion over the 114 tons recycled last year. And they did so despite those crippling blizzards in February smack dab in the middle of the competition. (Cue sappy music) Of course, Maryland’s citizenry and environment are the big winners, as schools across the state competed in the 10-week competition.
Staying with Towson a bit longer, the university is hosting its second annual environmental conference entitled “ Your Action, Your Impact” on April 22nd from 8:30am-2:30pm in the Student Union. The opening keynote speaker will be Don Boesch, the Roy F. Weston Chair in Natural Economics, Director of the Center for Integrative Environmental Research and Co-Director of Engineering and Public Policy at the University of Maryland College Park. The lunchtime keynote is presented by Kelly McManus a 2006 TU graduate who participated at the Copenhagen summit on this past December. A number of are being organized as well, and though a couple are specific to the Maryland state university system, many pertain to the Baltimore community and to the Chesapeake Bay. Registration can be done online following the links above.
Finally, to enjoy the environment and to improve it at the same time, join us at the Baltimore Green Works EcoFest on Saturday 17 April at Druid Hill Park, 12:pm – 6:pm. The festival kicks off “Baltimore Green Week” with music, food, and a number of vendors and organizations presenting their work and ideas (Vendors are still being encouraged to register via the downloadable PDF form). Natural desserts and snacks, a number of local bands, and free yoga classes, will all be there to pump us up and to wind us down. It promises to be a day of fun and of inspiration!
A last feather in the cap of the city is the long overdue rollout of: The Maryland Transit Authority currently operates over 100 hybrid diesel-electric buses that consume 23% less fuel than conventional buses. According to the MTA website, over the next decade or so the authority will replace its entire local-route fleet with hybrids. An added benefit rarely mentioned about such transportation technologies is that these busses run more quietly through neighborhoods than the previous generation’s diesel machines. We are thrilled to see Baltimore on the forefront of the greening movement, and we want to encourage everyone to hop on a new MTA bus, participate in these events and to get informed about even some little things that can make a big difference over the long term.