Welcome back, and happy 2018! We thought we’d kick off the year with a recap of some of the cool things we did last term so we can get energized for another semester of sustainability work.
Generation Energy UBC
We kicked off the year by hosting a youth dialogue on critical energy issues and policy, with a diverse group of students. This dialogue was one of 14 youth dialogues that took place across Canada, each led by a Generation Energy Youth Champion as part of the national Generation Energy initiative conducted by Natural Resources Canada. The insight and discussion from the UBC dialogue contributed to the Youth Voices Report that has been submitted to NRCan – check it out here!
Welcome Events and Kick-Off Meetings
Dozens of enthusiastic students came to find out more Common Energy at our two Welcome Events, and became members of our five different teams. We were thrilled to see how many people came out to each team’s kick-off meetings, and we can’t wait to see you all again (as well as new members!) this semester.
Vancouver’s Largest Clothing Swap
In early October, we held a huge clothing swap in CIRS. Hundreds of students attended and swapped more than a thousand items of clothing in just a few hours – a major wardrobe revamp that’s both free and sustainable! At the clothing swap, our friends at UBCC350 also held a brownie sale to raise funds for the Pull Together campaign . Thank you to everyone who volunteered. We couldn’t have pulled this off without you!
UBC Pulls Together: A FUNdraising Event!
Seven student organizations at UBC partnered together to host a fundraiser for the Pull Together campaign, to support First Nations’ legal battles against the Kinder Morgan pipeline project. We had a wonderful evening at Seedlings with delicious food, DIY crafts, raffle prizes and live music from The Stranded Assets, Sashka Warner, and Traffik. Thank you to everyone who attended and donated to this cause.
Common Energy’s Big Teams
Last term, we held two Big Team events, at the end of October and November, both with lots of delicious vegan food. Our Big Teams are a chance for members of our 5 teams to get together, as well as anyone else in the UBC community who cares about climate change or sustainability. This year, we had more than 40 students at each of our Big Teams, and lots of newcomers each time! Our first Big Team featured a lively debate on the politics of building pipelines. Our second Big Team included a presentation and roundtable dialogue with UBC delegates from the COP23 conference in Bonn, Germany, on the effectiveness of international treaties in addressing climate change. Stay tuned for our Big Teams this semester!
Zero Waste: Consuming Differently
Common Energy teamed up with Sprouts and EUS to run a Zero Waste workshop covering everything from zero waste philosophy to actual DIY projects to take home. The event was SOLD OUT quickly, and the demand was unbelievable! We had more than 800 people interested in attending on Facebook, and we’re thrilled to see the level of interest in pursuing a zero waste lifestyle. We’ll be having another Zero Waste workshop this term, for anyone who missed out last time.
Sustainability Careers Night
An annual partnership between Common Energy and Embark Sustainability from SFU, we hosted a careers night featuring professionals working in social sustainability, ranging from small start-ups and non-profits, to large-scale organizations. This event also sold out quickly – it’s clear that more and more young people are focused on incorporating sustainability into their future careers!
What better way to conclude a great semester and celebrate the UBC sustainability community’s hard work, than by sipping hot chocolate, enjoying live music, and games and activities outdoors?! Winterfest brought together all 5 of our teams (each of them had a fantastic booth!), and hundreds of UBC students in a celebration of sustainability and community at the end of November. Thank you to all the team members that worked so hard on the displays, photo booth and activities. (A special shout-out to two Common Energy coordinators who took the lead on organizing this event – Ganimul Singh and Natasha Harland!) Check out photos from Winterfest here!
We look forward to another amazing semester of sustainability on campus. Thank you for all your love and support.