Students in WCC’s Sustainability Hui are working together to pave the path toward a sustainable environment through extra-curricular education and activities.
According to club president Kalanikapu Copp, sustainability is to “do things to make sure that our grandchildren will be able to survive on the planet.”
The club conducts many projects such as the Rain Garden that was installed in February in front of Hale ‘Imiloa.
The Rain Garden is comprised of native Hawaiian plants designed to capture and filter storm water run-off before entering nearby streams.
Club members teach volunteers the importance of preventing storm water pollution and how these practices can be applied at home. Workdays to maintain the garden will be held in October.
Madori Rumpungworn, a founding group member, is conducting an energy audit on WCC.
She teamed up with Ibis Networks, an environmental research company, to install 300 “intellisockets” in three buildings on campus: Hale La’akea, Hale ‘Imiloa, and Hale Pālanakila.
These sockets monitor the energy consumption of everything from incubators to vending machines. The data shows the peaks and depressions of energy usage throughout the day. Information that is collected will then determine when to shut inactive devices off to reduce consumption. Energy savings won’t be conclusive until spring 2016.
The Sustainability Hui plans to host an event for Earth Day in April. They are also brainstorming other events such as trash art.
Trash art is the transformation of discarded items into works of art and creates an opportunity for the club to collaborate with the art department and showcase artists’ work.
In order to accomplish their goals, the Sustainability Hui needs more volunteers to join in their efforts.
Copp said the group is focusing this semester on raising awareness for the club and recruiting members whom to pass the baton.
“The hui needs people who are dedicated to make a difference,” said Rumpungworn. “This will be a great semester. I can feel it.”
For more information or to join the movement towards sustainability, contact club adviser Floyd McCoy at 236-9115 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
by Deborah Higa , Special to Ka ‘Ohana