SHERMAN, TEXAS —Thinking Green, Austin College’s new sustainability initiative, will launch Thursday, April 15, at 11 a.m. in Hoxie Thompson Auditorium of Sherman Hall. Comments from Austin College President Marjorie Hass and a lecture, “Congress, the EPA, and Climate Change,” by former Environmental Protection Agency administrator Richard Greene begin the events. The lecture and following question-and-answer session is free and open to the public at no charge.
A luncheon featuring locally grown foods will follow the lecture. The public may attend, purchasing lunch through ARAMARK in the Wright Campus Center Dining Hall for $6.50 and carrying their trays to join the group in Mabee Hall.
“The work of environmental protection, sustainability, and climate change are all ushering in a whole new era in this arena for our country and, by example and through leadership, the entire world,” Greene said.
Greene, adjunct professor at the University of Texas in Arlington School of Urban and Public Affairs, served for six years as the presidentially appointed senior federal official
(regional administrator) of the United States Environmental Protection Agency with jurisdiction over the states of Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arkansas and Louisiana. His duties included the assignment to carry out public environmental policy through the enforcement and implementation of federal and state environmental law, rules, and regulations. Such responsibilities included active working relationships with senior White House officials, members of Congress, governors, state legislators, county officials, mayors, and other local leaders as well as officials of state and national environmental organizations, business leaders, and tribal officials. He retired from that post last year. Since 1997, He also has been teaching environmental and local governance courses at UT Arlington’s School of Urban and Public Affairs. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Louisiana at Monroe and is a graduate of Northwestern University’s School of Mortgage Banking in Chicago. Greene also served as mayor of Arlington for 10 years, preceded by membership on the city council and planning and zoning commission.
The launch of Thinking Green comes within a week of environmental awareness activities, beginning Sunday, April 11, with “Green Serve,” an opportunity for students to give their time in environmentally friendly community services.
Other projects during the week include ARAMARK Dining Services plan to encourage reduction of food waste. Staff members have measured the amount of waste produced at the dining hall and will challenge students to reduce that during the week ahead.
Austin College alumna Marielle Remillard, Class of 2009, will give a lunch lecture at noon on Monday, April 12, on “To Copenhagen and Beyond: Explorations in Climate Change Policy.” She attended the 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference, commonly known as the Copenhagen Summit, held in Copenhagen, Denmark, between in December 2009.
Thinking Green is the newest initiative under Austin College’s President’s Climate Commitment. The initiative is designed by students, faculty, and staff to encourage “greener” practices on campus and in the community. During the week, students will be encouraged to make sustainable pledges and learn more about their environmental impact.
Austin College is a leading national independent liberal arts college located north of Dallas in Sherman, Texas. Founded in 1849, making it the oldest institution of higher education in Texas operating under original charter and name, the college is related by covenant to the Presbyterian Church (USA). Recognized nationally for academic excellence in the areas of international education, pre-professional training, and leadership studies, Austin College is one of 40 schools profiled in Loren Pope’s influential book Colleges that Change Lives.