How to put your green ideas into action 

By Natalie Chu 

Do you have a project in mind that could make UBC a more sustainable place to learn and grow? Maybe you think something on campus should be made greener, or you want to educate students on ways they can live more sustainably.

If you have the ideas but don’t know where to find the funds to bring them to life, the AMS Sustainability Projects Fund (SPF) may be your answer. Solomon Atta, Sustainability Funds Administrator, explains “the ultimate goal of the SPF is to promote sustainability on campus and to educate students to make positive changes in sustainability at UBC”

The fund was established after students passed a referendum to support student-initiated sustainability projects. Each year, every UBC student contributes  $2.52 through student fees to support the SPF. Projects can be big or small and students can apply to receive funding up to $15,000 depending on their project size.

Here are some past ventures supported by the SPF.

Climate Hub- Climate comeback

In a time where intimidating facts and numbers about climate change might make people want to give up, it is important for students to keep fighting. The SPF financed a short video for Climate Hub UBC, which encouraged students to adopt sustainability. The video aims to motivate students by comparing the current climate situation to athletes returning to play after sustaining serious injuries.

Common Energy – Mugshare 

As UBC’s largest student sustainability organization, Common Energy has many projects that benefit from the SPF. These projects range from conferences to team meetings for education and outreach. For example, a Common Energy initiative is MugShare. This project brings reusable travel mugs to cafes on campus for student use. It aims to reduce the number of disposable coffee cups that end up in UBC’s waste. The funds were used to obtain and administer the mugs to the coffee shops across campus.

Do you have an idea too? 

If you are a UBC student or student group and have a project in mind with sustainability at its core, you can apply to use the AMS SPF. Before you apply, be sure to spend time thinking about your project through its full lifecycle, to increase the likelihood that your application will be accepted. The application process is designed to make sure that all parties get the most out of a given project, and to reduce the possibility of any unanticipated negative impacts.

For more information about the SPF, visit the AMS Sustainability Projects Fund page.

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