The Botany Greenhouse is aiming to show the campus how it can get even greener, not with plants inside, but on top, with a living "green" roof on a shed alongside the greenhouse proper.
Road construction is a more-than-$80 billion annual industry in the United States. Yet nothing comparable to the LEED rating system for buildings, or the Energy Star system for appliances, exists for highways and roads.
Civil engineers at the University of Washington and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Seattle office have taken a first look at how dams in the Columbia River basin, the nation's largest hydropower system, could be managed for a different climate.
At the UW, we seem to continually strive toward complete environmental sustainability. The recently installed restrictions on paper used at the UW bring us ever closer to this lofty, yet incredibly noble goal. In addition to this, the introduction of the trial power-grid program, energy-efficient light-bulb exchange, and the on-campus composting program define our school as environmentally conscious, at the very least.
University of Washington recognized for leadership in sustainability according to Inhabitat.com, a weblog devoted to the future of design, tracking the innovations in technology, practices and materials that are pushing architecture and home design towards a smarter and more sustainable future.
If you've been by the pond lately, you've seen a sign with the headline "Make way for ducklings!" and near it a ramp leading from the surrounding sidewalk into the pond. The ramp is to help the ducklings into and out of the water; the sign is to ask human visitors to stand back and let the ducklings use it.
In this two-part class, 15 students learn about the historical roots and various definitions of sustainability, then explore and analyze the UW to figure out how it could be more sustainable. This quarter -- the first this class has been offered -- students focus on sustainability practices related to water; future topics may include energy and transportation. Student teams partner with staff, including campus utility workers, to research topics like the efficiency of water flow in showers at the IMA, or the layout of storm-water drains on campus.
There has been sharp disagreement in recent years about how much, or even whether, winter snowpack has declined in the Cascade Mountains of Washington and Oregon during the last half-century. But new research leaves little doubt that a warmer climate has a significant effect on the snowpack, as measured by water content on April 1, even if other factors keep year-to-year measurements close to normal for a period of years. Water content can vary greatly depending on temperature and other conditions at the time of snowfall.
The Puget Sound Environmental Inventory produced an inventory of the activities and capabilities of the UW in the Puget Sound watershed to:
A new "Environmental Innovation Practicum" course, offered this quarter, will be a springboard for a universitywide competition that will encourage students to develop practical solutions to environmental problems.
The two-credit course, which is the first activity sponsored by the new College of the Environment, will acquaint students with key concepts through case studies presented by speakers representing the public and private sectors. The theme for this year's course is water.