The future is Orange, Maroon -- and green: Students lead Claflin in sustainability projects

By: Gibson Najee
Mar 18, 2015
Friends of the Earth is the face of student-organized sustainability at Claflin University.
The organization led by President Timothy Alston has been active on campus for around 10 years and is currently involved in multiple recycling efforts across campus.
“FOE's goal is to raise awareness about the living environment so it can be better,” Alston said. The organization is currently comprised of three teams that collect recyclables around campus and bring them to the new recycling center located behind the cafeteria and to the Pepsi Dream Machine located outside of the cafeteria.
“We have an internal competition as well as the nationwide one to motivate our efforts,” said Alston when asked how FOE is involved with the Pepsi Challenge. The goal is increase U.S. beverage container recycling to 50 percent by having universities compete in recycling bottles.
The campaign by Pepsi has touched more than 65 colleges and collected more than 15 million bottles. It's one of the many efforts Claflin is currently a part of to move to a sustainable campus.
The kickoff of the university’s sustainability projects was Sept 23,2014.
Rodney Hudson, director of auxiliary services, headed new green campaigns around campus.
Efforts include instillation of solar panels on dormitory roofs, the opening of a new recycling center, recycling cooking oil and using a biodigester machine for food waste in the cafeteria.
Since the kickoff, Claflin university has become one of the nation's top 10 green HBCUs. The university is still pushing toward its own goals of increasing recycling, saving energy and recording local climate changes.
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