College of the Canyons and the the Santa Clarita Environmental Education Consortium (SCEEC) officials hosted the first Green Up: Community Action & Education event Saturday.
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“This is our first Green Up event for the Santa Clarita Environmental Education Consortium. We’re just really happy that we have so many people here today. We had roughly a hundred people for the opening ceremony and the keynote speech,” said Dr. Jia-Yi Cheng-Levine, COC chair of the English department and vice chair of the SCEEC advisory board. “All of the conference has been really terrific.People are really inquisitive, curious and they want to do something about it.”
The event was located at the Dianne G. Van Hook University Center in Valencia.
“It has been really exciting to see so many aspects of environmental conservation coming together on this campus today. I’m impressed with the energy and commitment that people have,” said Dr. Geoffrey Chase, dean of San Diego State University’s Division of Undergraduate Studies and director of the Center for Regional Sustainability. “I’m also really impressed with the way it’s going to rip loud into the education and into the schools. and I think it’s just been a terrific, terrific event.”
The conference was open to the public and more than 100 people came to the event.
“So we hope that we have more and more people getting involved in the near future because it really takes a whole community to have a larger buy in for us to be able to have a better sustainable future as a community,” Cheng-Levine said. “We have many vendors including Water Company and Lockheed Martin.“
Topics that were covered during the conference included environmental technology, green architecture & home design, business and sustainability, water conservation, eco-friendly gardening, renewable energy, and personal environmental responsibility and common best practices
“Buildings create at least one third of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. I think we’re all aware that cars and vehicles produce greenhouse gases but I don’t know if people are aware that buildings produce greenhouse gases,” said Diane Malone, campus project manager at Mesa College. “When I heard that, as an architect, I was shocked. It made me want to do more with buildings and I’ve always been interested in sustainable buildings. We really don’t need to talk about sustainability with buildings, we need to do it.”
More than 15 vendors attended the event, each providing their own piece of environmentally friendly knowledge.
“One of the reasons that we thought it was a good idea to sponsor this event is looking at different types of sustainability we need to sustain our natural products for the future, like our water, our energy and things like that,” said Robert McLaughlan, customer service and water efficiency coordinator for the Newhall County Water District. “It’s not just about making sure we have enough for today, it’s about making sure we have enough for our children, our grandchildren and the future generations.”