Blog

PBA Spotlight: The Intersection of Environmental Justice and Economics

Sam Stolper

I had the opportunity to sit down with Sam Stolper, an environmental and energy economist and assistant professor at University of Michigan’s School for Environment and Sustainability (SEAS). We discussed his thoughts on the intersection of environmental justice and economics. His work investigates how policies can shift behavior to contribute to environmental protection and social well-being. He points to his … Read More

Black History Month In Review

One of my favorite poems is called On the Pulse of Morning, by the poet, memoirist, and civil rights activist Maya Angelou. This beautiful poem calls attention to the history of slavery, colonialism, and environmental degradation in the US, while instilling a sense of hope, unity, and responsibility, for our planet as well as the people upon it. In this … Read More

Plogging Our Way to a Cleaner Campus

Brian plogging around campus.

Coming back to campus in the fall amid a pandemic was scary. I will be the first to admit I was uncertain how the school year would look or if it would be as fun or rewarding as my previous semesters. One thing I knew for sure was that to get through these difficult times, I would need to stay … Read More

“Scopes” of Carbon Emissions Explained

Graphic with examples of Scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions

When you enter into any conversation about carbon neutrality, you’re likely going to hear people categorize the different types of greenhouse gas emissions into what are called “scopes.” This article will describe what greenhouse gases are, the differences between the scopes they are grouped into, and give you examples of what types of emissions fit into each scope from a … Read More

Community Justice Style: What Action Should You Take Next?

Oftentimes, when we talk about sustainability we talk about the individual choices we make to contribute to a better planet, but it is also important to give our attention to environmental justice and social justice as well because these go hand-in-hand. Many environmental challenges are unique and tend to affect BIPOC communities the most. Luckily there is so much shared power…

At Home Waste Audit: A Simple Waste Reduction Opportunity

According to the most recent data from the Environmental Protection Agency, the United States disposes of 267.8 million tons of municipal solid waste (MSW) annually – that’s a lot of waste! That waste is made up of a variety of different types of materials, which you can see in the chart below. Paper and paperboard make up 25%, plastics 13.2%, … Read More

Reducing Waste from To-Go Meals

use a reusable bag

Due to COVID-19, MDining has had to adapt their operations for public safety and serve meals to-go. This has been a huge change given that they serve approximately 95,000 meals in a single week. They have done a great job ensuring that as much of the packaging as possible is compostable. But understandably, even with compostable packaging, this method of … Read More

Simple Strategies for Reducing Your Work-From-Home Energy Footprint

North Campus Solar Panels

As we dive into this fall semester, many things are different than usual. The Diag is less crowded, the libraries seem deserted, and classrooms are largely left empty as COVID-19 continues to push us towards a new normal. But what do all these changes have in common?They all have to do with students and faculty spending more time at home.  … Read More

PBA Spotlight: Ari Weil – Once a PBA, Always a PBA

Ari Weil

The Planet Blue Ambassador Program launched in 2011. Nine years later it has grown into a vibrant community of thousands of students, staff, faculty, and alumni members. Without all of you, we would not be able to work towards our mission of engaging the campus community in sustainability, advancing the University of Michigan’s sustainability commitments, and moving towards a campus-wide … Read More