Earth Day becomes 'Earth Month' at ASU

Throughout the month of April, the School of Sustainability at ASU has organized events under the theme of environmental preservation

April 22 is widely known as Earth Day, but the ASU School of Sustainability has celebrated it all throughout the month.

The Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability has organized events throughout April that have given students an opportunity to celebrate Earth month on ASU's four major campuses.

Lauren Kuby, the manager of Events and Community Engagement for the ASU sustainability school, said the largest event of the month is the “A” Mountain Restoration, which is a march that includes picking up garbage on the mountain, cleaning up the trails and planting.

“We planned this project so we can walk the talk and really give back to the mountain we love too much,” she said. “We love it so much that we’re loving it to death, the trails get rocked and then spring rain comes and that hurts the trails.”

Kuby also said that last year, ASU students, faculty, staff, community members, neighborhood associations, local businesses and a bus full of students from the Desert Montessori school participated in the “A” Restoration March, which amounted to a total of about 134 people.

She also said that last year there were four dump trucks full of debris and 150 trash bags full of trash taken off “A” Mountain over the course of the two-hour event.

“It’s couple hours of work in the morning but there’s a lot of reward,” she said. “Generally people feel really good about doing something productive on Earth Day.”

The “A” Mountain Restoration will be held Friday, April 22 at 8 a.m. at the south side of the Hayden Flour Mill on the corner of Rio Salado Parkway and Mill Avenue. 

One of final ASU Earth Month events is “The Human Economy” which features a lecture from CEO of the Humane Society Wayne Pacelle, who will speak on “the concept of a humane economy and his perspective on the economics of animal exploitation,” according to the Earth Month events calendar.

Kuby said Pacelle’s lecture will be followed by a serving of vegan desserts in the Pomegranate Café.

“A big part of what we do in all of out events is feature healthy, delicious vegan food,” she said.

One of the other main Earth Month events is the Urban Forestry Planting Day, which will be held Saturday, April 29 at 7:30 a.m. at Esquer Park in Tempe. During this event, participants will work to plant 40 trees, according to the events calendar.

Susan Norton, the program manager of ASU sustainability practices said the events could help educate students on environmentally-healthy practices.

“Especially in Phoenix, anytime you can plant tries it is beneficial,” she said. “They really reduce the heat island index, help cool buildings and increase the biodiversity of a community.”

Trinity Dosemagen, the events and outreach coordinator for the sustainability school, said the planning for Earth Month is a semester-long process.

One of the events Dosemagen was involved in was the Earth Month film series.

“Many of the documentaries we’ve shown are the typical environmental documentaries that make you want to go crazy after watching them,” she said. “we tried to focus on something more solution-oriented for Earth Month.”

Dosemagen said taking care of the environment should apply year-round, not just during Earth Month.

“I think Earth Day is important, but for us it’s really an all year thing,” she said. “We really try to reduce our carbon footprint in all our events, I think it needs to be implemented into our every day lives.”


Reach the reporter at kjkelly3@asu.edu or follow @keegan_kelly on Twitter.

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