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Report: Intermountain Sustainability Summit

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Last week Sara Rose Tannenbaum with SLCGreen headed up to the Intermountain Sustainability Summit. Here is her first-hand account of her experience there:

At the Intermountain Sustainability Summit there were four session tracks to sample from or follow throughout the day. The one geared towards students engaged with the emerging Fossil Free Campus Divestment campaigns and explored how to pursue sustainability as a profession.

The other three session themes highlighted current issues and innovation within water, energy and recycling sustainability.

The Intermountain Sustainability Summit theme of recycling began even before setting foot into Weber State University’s Shepherd Union Building. Lining the pedestrian entrance to the conference was a veritable display of recyclables:  not bins of beer cans or a cluttered collection of office papers, but huge blocks— bigger than 90 gallon recycle bins—of compressed cardboard, deflated plastic and squashed metal.This nonverbal presentation made transparent the usually unnoticed side of recycling.  Just like we break down our cardboard, it’s important to dissect and try on the many dimensions and disciplines of sustainability.

Keynote speaker L. Hunter Lovins (pictured above) made the case for innovation and sustainability from a business perspective. Lisa Skumatz, an economist, used statistical analysis to highlight efficiency of cost-effective approaches to recycling. It was the variety of perspectives present at the Intermountain Sustainability Summit that made it a valuable learning and networking experience. We’re lucky to have so many exciting initiatives, businesses and leaders fighting on the green front.

Check out some great photos from last week’s event.

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