By David Robin
Recycling is a serious problem on the Stony Brook campus. One stroll through the academic mall in the middle of the day reveals a wasteland of plastic bottles, sandwich wrappers, and pizza boxes. Some of this garbage falls off of the top of overflowing garbage cans but other articles of trash are left or purposely thrown on the ground by fellow Stony Brook students.
Stony Brook has made an effort with the placing of recycling garbage cans in public areas as well as in every dorm room. What else can Stony Brook do to contribute to the earth friendly effort?
One event that answers this question every year is EarthStock, which takes place from April 11 – 18, and involves a variety of unique events. One of the more interesting events taking place is “Do it in the Dark,” a “renewable rock concert” hosted by the Environmental Club. The event takes place in the Mendelsohn Pit from 7PM – 11PM on Thursday, April 17. When most people think of rock concerts, eco-friendly is not aword that comes to mind, however, the bands will be using a battery that will be charged with solar power during the day for use during the concert. In addition to the music, there will be two guest speakers.
The first speaker will be Professor Michael White, who will talk about Suffolk County’s drinking water. There will be many other activities, such as glow in the dark soccer as well as free food and a raffle for reusable water bottles and t-shirts. In addition, CHOICE will be giving away free condoms as well as stressing the importance of safe sex, thus hinting at another meaning for the name of the concert.
The name of the event, “Do it in the Dark,” stresses that students should reduce energy consumption. Electricity is overused throughout the dorms and the event is trying to spread the idea that turning off your computer, or even just turning off your lights, can have a significant impact on the environment. Walking instead of driving to class and carpooling are other ways to reduce our impact on the environment.
Brendon Parker, the guitarist for Double Wonderful, one of the bands playing at the event, understands the importance of the event. “I feel it’s important to take a stance on environmental issues…If you think of all of the electricity that bands use, it’s amazing that solar power can be used and that it is an available option.” In addition to Double Wonderful, Honus Wagner and Vector Red will be playing at the event.
The Environmental Club will be offering students the opportunity to take a pledge that says that they will stop drinking bottled water on campus. This action is part of a larger campaign that involves a petition to ban bottled water on campus. “Suffolk County is among the best tap water in the country. So much waste comes from manufacturing water bottles” says Michelle Pizer, the President of the Environmental Club.
According to Pizer, to manufacture a plastic water bottle, oil and other chemical byproducts are used and these hurt the environment in which they are made, which is usually in Africa, India, or another country that cannot fight the pollution generated by these manufacturing plants. The pledge is designed so that students use water fountains instead of buying Dasani water bottles.
This saves money for the individual, reduces unnecessary trash, and would be beneficial to the environments in these factory-ridden countries. Pizer hopes that “having this event will encourage people to make better choices in the future.” Captain Planet would be proud.