Bauhaus goes green with limited success

| Senior News Editor

The Green Events Commission partnered with Bauhaus this year to create a more sustainable event.

The Green Events Commission partnered with Bauhaus this year to create a more sustainable event.

Surrounded by students dressed as Mario and Luigi, Candy Land characters, a vuvuzela, Elmo and Na’vis, composting bins lurked unnoticed next to garbage cans at Bauhaus on Saturday night.

In an attempt to make Bauhaus a more sustainable event, the Green Events Commission (GEC) worked in collaboration with the Architecture School Council to install these bins.

The GEC exists to help student groups put on more environmentally friendly events. This was the first year that the GEC partnered with Bauhaus, and the commission helped institute a number of changes at this year’s party.

“We partner with [Bauhaus] and focus on making their food options more sustainable and reducing the waste generated at their events,” said senior Emily Averna, co-chair of the GEC.

The GEC pushed the Architecture School Council to serve food from Chipotle at the event, instead of Chick-fil-A and McDonald’s.

“Chipotle has an emphasis on responsible food. A lot of it is naturally raised and organic,” Averna said.

A larger part of the budget was dedicated to buying utensils than in the past to assure that all napkins, plates and cups were compostable.

Unfortunately, all of the work put in to ensure that the waste could be composted did not pay off. Attendees threw the foil wrappers in the composting bins, and many compostable items were thrown in the garbage.

“It didn’t work out as well as we expected,” said Tristan Sopp, president of the Architecture School Council.

“Obviously, drunk people aren’t the best at putting trash in compost bins. Students aren’t that great when they’ve been drinking at making sure they separate things correctly,” he said.

Ultimately, the Architecture School Council was unable to compost anything because the bins contained the wrappers and other non-compostable items.

“It did cost a little more to [compost]; it was frustrating. I just don’t know if it was the right scenario to make composting work,” Sopp said.

In organizing the event, Architecture School Council found compostable wrappers, but by the time they had contacted Chipotle, the food had already been wrapped.

Averna hopes that this mistake can be avoided in the future.

“We’re still a new group, so we’re hoping to learn,” Averna said. “We always expect curveballs, so I guess at this one we have to appreciate the victory of sustainable foods.”

Bauhaus was already making efforts to be sustainable before its council met with the GEC. In previous years, the council already used paperless advertising and reused decorations, according to Averna.

Last year, the GEC worked with Dance Marathon to reduce water bottle usage by hosting a raffle in which only those who brought their own water bottles were eligible to enter. The GEC also brought in local pizzas and other locally and more sustainably packaged snacks.

The GEC has plans to work with Relay for Life, Thurtene, Celebrations Weekend, Dance Marathon and the First Year Center throughout the year.

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