Bellevue College Earth Week to feature SEIU VP David Rolf

Date posted: April 7, 2014

April 21-26 event will focus on how to “Create an Eco-topia”

Bellevue College will hold its 15th annual Earth Week celebration April 21 – 26, exploring the theme “Create an Eco-topia,” with a series of lectures and special events to promote environmental awareness and the sustainable use of our planet’s resources.

“The theme celebrates our place on Earth, whether that is our place in our neighborhood, the Puget Sound region or our place on the planet,” said Patrick Green, BC Office of Sustainability program manager and Earth Week organizer.  “Not only do we occupy this place, but we strive to steward it for the health of people and the environment.”

Festivities will kick off on Earth Day, Monday, April 21, with activities centering around “Transportation in Eco-topia” including a transportation fair with representatives from King Co. Metro, Hopelink, Enterprise Car Share, and the Seattle Electric Vehicle Association (SEVA).  SEVA will have several vehicles on display for attendees, including a Volt Runner, a Tesla Roadster, an electric motorcycle, a Nissan Leaf, and an EV truck conversion.

Attention will shift to “Eating in Eco-topia,” Tuesday, April 22 with keynote speaker SEIU Vice President David Rolf, one of the key leaders in the charge to raise the SeaTac minimum wage to $15 per hour. Rolf, who Seattle Mayor Ed Murray tapped to chair the city’s Inequality and Minimum Wage Committee, will speak on creating a living wage and income inequality.

Other events include:

  • Lectures throughout the week featuring Bellevue College instructors and speakers from the Washington Environmental Coalition, the City of Bellevue, Cascade Bicycle Club, and other organizations
  • The fifth-annual BC Farmer’s Market on Tuesday, April 22, from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., featuring a number of vendors selling organic produce, honey and baked goods as well as a cooking demo.

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 here.

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 the first on a U.S. college campus; implementing the Building Dashboard, a system allowing visitors to see real-time data on energy use on campus by building; a 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.