Earth Week to feature electric vehicle car show, Cliff Mass lecture

Date posted: April 15, 2013

Exploring the theme “Living in a Changing Climate,” Bellevue College will hold its 14th annual Earth Week celebration April 22-26, with a series of lectures, films, and special events to promote environmental awareness and the sustainable use of our planet’s resources.

“We chose this year’s theme because the issue of climate change is more relevant now than it has ever been, and our students will need to be prepared to live with the changes that have already been set in motion by the lifestyle choices we all make every day,” said Rob Viens, Ph.D., dean of the college’s Science Division and organizer of Earth Week. “The programming we’ve put together will hopefully communicate not only the consequences of living in unsustainable ways, but how we might go about solving some of these problems.”

The festivities kick off on Earth Day on Monday, April 22, with two noteworthy events. From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., an EV car and bicycle show will take place in the central courtyard, featuring plug-in electric vehicles from Tesla, Mitsubishi and Nissan. At 9:30 a.m., local weather guru and University of Washington professor Cliff Mass will present an informative talk about the impacts of global warming on the Northwest.

Other events include:

  • Lectures throughout the week featuring Bellevue College instructors and speakers from the Sierra Club, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Microsoft, T-Mobile and other organizations
  • Comedian Yoram Bauman, known as the “Stand-up Economist,” will perform a routine on economics and climate change, Thursday, April 25 at 9:30 a.m.
  • Showings of several films about environmental issues, including “Chasing Ice” and “Climate Refugees”
  • The fourth-annual BC Farmer’s Market on Tuesday, April 23, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., featuring a small number of vendors selling organic fruits, vegetables, honey and dairy products

All events are free and open to the public and will take place on the college’s main campus, located at 3000 Landerholm Circle SE in Bellevue. A complete schedule is posted at http://scidiv.bellevuecollege.edu/rv/earthweek/2013/schedule13.php.

Since the first Earth Week in 2000, Bellevue College has adopted a series of measures that have made the campus much more sustainable. Some of these initiatives include: the installation of several electric vehicle charging stations, including a DC fast charger, one of only a handful in the entire state; a comprehensive project to upgrade campus lighting, water and HVAC systems to substantially reduce energy consumption, incorporating geothermal heating and solar power; programs to encourage alternate means of transport, including a ride-match website to facilitate carpooling; and the integration of sustainability throughout the instructional curriculum combined with a student-created sustainability fund. These efforts have BC in the running for a 2013 Climate Leadership Award.