PLU’s geothermal project is pursuing federal appropriations

FY 2011 Appropriations Requests

Congressman Dicks has sent to the House Appropriations Committee a series of recommendations for specific federal expenditures that benefit people and programs in the 6th Congressional District and Washington State. These recommendations are being made following the submission of requests to the Congressman from local governments, non-profit organizations, and educational institutions. As part of the continuing effort to increase transparency in the appropriations process, we are posting these requests at this time in order to assure that fellow legislators and constituents can learn about these projects before the relevant subcommittees make a decision on which may be funded.

View requests made within the following subcommittees:

Interior and Environment Appropriations Subcommittee:

Pacific Lutheran University geo-thermal heat pump – $1,200,000
This Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy program request for Pacific Lutheran University is for the installation of a geo-thermal heat pump. This project would consist of two deep wells, one to bring up the water and the other to discharge it back into the underground river that runs from Mt. Rainier to Puget Sound. The project will serve Eastvold Hall (the performing arts center in the heart of the campus) and five residence halls. The entity to receive this funding is Pacific Lutheran University, 12180 Park Avenue South, Tacoma WA 98447.


Technology Grant

Dear colleagues,

The application deadline for the sixth annual Digital Media Center
small grants program is May 11.

The DMC small grants program funds up to five proposals for up to
$1,000 each. Grants underwrite the cost of software, hardware,
student wages, training, or other resources that support innovative
uses of technology and pedagogy within the curriculum.  Additional
information, including application instructions, selection criteria,
and a flyer about the program, is available at

Recent recipients of DMC small grants include Lenny Reisberg, to
cover the cost of training for effective use of a smartboard;
Matthew Levy and Genevieve Williams, to purchase audience response
technology to educate students about plagiarism; and Maria Muzzo, to
explore pedagogical possibilities for the Chalk & Wire digital
portfolio authoring, assessment, and data analysis system.

What innovative use of instructional technology do you want to
explore?  If you have a good idea but don’t feel you have the time
to follow through on it, you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to
apply.  Go to the link above to find out for yourself!


Chris Ferguson, Associate Provost/I&TS
Layne Nordgren, Director for I&TS User Services

Bike Ride Tuesday, the 27th

Hey Everyone!

We are going to have our first night ride on Tuesday!!!

*Take a break from studying and get some fresh air!
*Learn about upcoming bike races and events around the area!
I will also be giving out (homemade) bike logs for those wanting to track their mileage!

Meet at the Bike Co-op (backside of Harstad…bright “Bike Co-op” sign, ya can’t miss!) at 6pm.

Bring your own bike, or be one of the first people there and use a co-op bike (be prepared to sign a “I will not sue PLU for millions” agreement)! Exact route is undecided, but we will keep it relatively short (half hour) to see how people are feeling, more experienced bikers can continue on!

RAIN OR SHINE!! (it’s awesome biking in the rain…just sayin!…)

Bring a friend and bring a helmet! Safety first kids!

Hope to see you there!! Email me (Katie Choate) at or text me (503-298-8358) if you have any questions!

All the Benefits of High Fructose Corn Syrup

Scientists and farmers alike have known for decades that high-fructose corn syrup is bad news for land management. Growing the monoculture of corn needed to provide for high fructose corn syrup is devastating for natural ecosystems that were originally inhabiting farm land. The unnatural need for this stuff requires extra fertilizer and soil manipulation to guarantee a good crop, and the water used for irrigation is literally draining the Midwest out through the Mississippi and into the oceans where we will never be able to bring it back into America’s aquifers.

So amongst all this bad news for the environment, Princeton has conducted a study showing us exactly how bad it is for our health, too. I want to know; what is the point in consuming, and therefore producing, this destructive stuff?

A sweet problem: Princeton researchers find that high-fructose corn syrup prompts considerably more weight gain
by Hilary Parker

A Princeton University research team has demonstrated that all sweeteners are not equal when it comes to weight gain: Rats with access to high-fructose corn syrup gained significantly more weight than those with access to table sugar, even when their overall caloric intake was the same.

In addition to causing significant weight gain in lab animals, long-term consumption of high-fructose corn syrup also led to abnormal increases in body fat, especially in the abdomen, and a rise in circulating blood fats called triglycerides. The researchers say the work sheds light on the factors contributing to obesity trends in the United States.

“Some people have claimed that high-fructose… Continue reading

ANNOUNCEMENT: Tacoma “Make a Splash” grants available

(Deadline: May 14, 2010)

Attached: Make a Splash grant program brochure

Make a Splash environmental grants of up to $4,000 are available from City of Tacoma Environmental Services to any school, business, organization or individual considering a project to help protect surface water resources within the Tacoma city limits by preventing stormwater pollution.

Past projects include field trips, science day camps, habitat restoration activities, rain barrel installation, installation of cigarette butt litter cans throughout business districts, implementing low-impact development practices, spill kit distribution and a variety of educational activities.

Tie-ins with the Puget Sound regional stormwater pollution prevention campaign, Puget Sound Starts Here (, are encouraged. Key messages in that campaign include proper pet waste disposal, natural yard care, preferred car washing methods and fixing leaky vehicles.

Application materials must be postmarked by May 14, 2010.

Make a Splash grants are meant to prevent pollution and protect clean water through community collaborations focusing on education, protection and restoration efforts. Projects funded by a Make a Splash grant need to meet at least one of these goals. There’s a lot that can be done to help protect our surface water resources … use your imagination!

The Make a Splash grant program, funded by the City’s Surface Water Management utility rates, provides up to $50,000 in grants every year. This is the eighth round of grants for this program.

To find out more about the grant, past projects, tips or to download an application, go to Or, call (253) 502-2126.

Alicia Lawver

Community Relations Specialist

City of Tacoma Environmental Services

Surface Water/Wastewater Management / (253) 591-5414

4/13/10 Sustainability Committee Minutes

Attendees:Emma Struss, Mary Roberts, Jihan Grettenberger, Christine Cooley, Emily McCann, and Melina Maltese

Update from Last Meeting:
– Purchased Dyson Airblade Hand Dryers
– Next week is Earth Week ( April 18th – 24th)

Bike Coop:
– Fire Department sold helmets and educated public
– Story in “This Week at PLU”
– Individuals can earn a bike by volunteering in PLU community

Greening Up Orientation:
– Possibility of having a booth during orientation
– During Passport weekend, there were prospective students who chose PLU due to our sustainability initiatives

Fellowship Update:
– Still looking for final Fellow

The Future of Sustainability:
– Review of leadership positions
– Chair
– Vice Chair
– Treasurer
– Personal Development
– Secretary
– Set expectations of what is expected of the committee and members along with what we want to get out of Sustainability
– Try to include members of most Departments
– Increase student representatives
– Bring in new perspectives by increasing student involvement
– Possibly speak at University House to increase communication and networking for Sustainability
– Nominate people who would be a good addition to the Sustainability Comittee
– Make announcements at orientation at the beginning of the year: First Year Students, Staff, Transfer students, Faculty and Emerging Leaders Orientations.
– By introducing Sustainability during Faculty Orientation, potential to get new faculty a part of Sustainability
– Introduce more educational talks during meetings about current sustainability efforts outside of campus

Next Meeting:
– Formalize meetings
– Nominate future committee members
– Delegate orientation responsibilities (ie tabiling)
– Review of nomination letter
– Edit future Sustainability role descriptions

Sustainable convenience (An article from the Mast)

Sustainable convenience
Public transportation aims to eliminate car culture

So Wise

I find it very interesting that in an area that is so eco-minded, we have a horrible public transportation system. Efforts have been made to encourage people to carpool or ride bikes to work to cut down on vehicle emissions and gas consumption. The local public transportation systems have also done their parts by offering multiple routes and runs during peak commuting times.

The problem is that public transportation is useless outside of commuter times; most routes only run every hour or half hour. Public transportation can take up to twice as long as driving, and you often have to walk or take multiple routes to get to and from your destination. Like it or not, we are….