March 28, 2014

Noon-1pm, Science Hall Rm. 140

About the Presenters:

Trades in Nature: Exploring British Biodiversity Policy — Colin Higgins

Colin HigginsWhat happens to the environment and to society if biodiversity becomes a commodity? Though a seemingly peculiar question, it is increasingly one that must be answered worldwide. Governance strategies globally have been undergoing a sea change since the late 1970s, with increasing use of market-based policy mechanisms. This trend is as true for finance as it is for resource policy, in what has some scholars have termed “neoliberalization.” As a result of this new market logic, formerly untraded goods, such as biodiversity, are being treated as commodities––or at least they are in theory. Given this context, I examine the United Kingdom’s unfolding biodiversity offsetting pilot program. I probe at the causes and consequences of this policy, by examining a case study in the town of Southmoor. This project is independent research I conducted under the advising of Dr. Morgan Robertson, and is the jumping-off point for senior-thesis field research.

Making Receipt Reduction a Reality at UW-Madison — Rachel Feil and Kyla Kaplan

Rachel Feil and Kyla KaplanIf UW-Madison’s annual produced receipts were held back-to-back from Madison, WI they would stretch all the way to Dallas, TX. The primary focus of this research addresses what forms of receipt reduction are possible for UW-Madison entities. By partnering with UW-Madison entities such as the University Housing Dining and Culinary Services, Wisconsin Union, Division of Information Technology, Babcock Hall Dairy Store, and UW Transportation Services, there is now an established baseline of receipts. Now the question is, how can each UW-Madison entity effectively reduce their paper receipts? This research has been made possible through the resources of Office of Sustainability, ES 600, and ASM under the advisors, Angela Pakes Ahlman and Duncan Carlsmith.

Putting Waste in its Place — Miles Tryon-Petith and Jake Kositzke

Miles HOURThe Office of Sustainability engages in a variety of strategies to foster sustainable waste management on campus. This project provides an overview on the implementation and effectiveness of waste reduction campaigns executed in partnership with campus housing, dining, unions, and the physical plant waste division. Aspects of the project include composting initiatives to expand and monitor compost operations at several Wisconsin Union dining locations. Campus-wide composting is enhanced through decontaminating efforts to maximize use of the waste when received at the composting facility. Information from various pilot projects has led to the expansion of outdoor recycling on campus by leveraging relationships with physical plant and WE Conserve. Strategies such as the trash audit help drive the project to evaluate, educate and expand sustainable waste management.

Miles HOUR2