Students learn about ‘the people, the profit and the planet’ at sustainability event

by | Apr 14, 2016 | News

Christy Farr and Jeremy Appel

Sustainability may be a familiar concept to most people, but today at Lakeshore campus students were reminded once again of the little things they can do to help save the environment.

Postgraduates in the Public Relations program put on the “It’s Easy Being Green” Sustainability Carnival Thursday.

“Sustainability means meeting the needs of future generations, while continuing to meet the needs of our own and that encompasses the environment, but also social justice and ethical needs of communities around the world and the economy,” said Lindsay Walker of sustainability manager at Humber.

Walker provided the three ‘p’s of sustainability, “The people, the profit and the planet.”

The tone was light, with animals to pet, including a lemur from Hands On Exotics, popcorn, hot dogs and prizes, and didn’t directly address the serious implications of climate change.

“We didn’t feel like it had to be a negative message,” said Christopher Lewis, co-chair of the event. “We want students to embrace the idea of being sustainable, so we threw a carnival.”

Humber President Chris Whitaker says climate change is a very serious issue and that the event was a start to the necessary conversation amongst students.

“People are coming in with different levels of understanding of those issues. Some have no understanding and some have a very sophisticated understanding,” he said.

“We need to start somewhere and provide those opportunities, so this is a place create greater awareness, particularly for our students,” said Whitaker.

The event included various vendors, one of which was Save the Bees.

“Students are actually pretty aware that there’s been difficulty with bees in the last while,” said Fran Freeman of Sticky Bees Urban Honey, whose booth “Hive Consciousness” was there to educate students about the plight of the bees.

Students are aware of the general issues facing honey bees, but, she said, may not be aware of those facing native bees.

“We’re actually losing some species of bees, like the rusty patched bumblebee, for example, completely,” said Freeman.

“The best way to reverse these processes is to lobby the government to change legislation and reduce certain types of pesticides.”

Some students got more out of the event than others.

Nicole Piasentini, a public relations postgraduate, had high praise for the carnival.

“I love that we’re talking about the environment,” she said. “It’s more prevalent than ever.

“As I walk around, there are a lot of vendors trying to express that very thing to us and it’s a lot of fun.”

Not so much for Bryan Morrison, a postgraduate advertising student.

“I learned about the gorilla exhibit where I can drop my cellphone off, but other than that I didn’t learn anything,” he said.

Does it address the serious issue of climate change?

“No, not at all,” said Morrison. “There’s too many food stands,” not enough information.

“We came for the free food and didn’t know it was about sustainability.”