Sustain the future

Are you sustainable?

This spring the 9th annual Sustainability Fair was held on the lawn outside the LR building. The lush green grass and the verdant leafy Ficus trees provided a sustainable ambience for the event.

There were booths that instructed, booths that encouraged participation and booths that demonstrated principals of sustainability. The booths were presented by AWC students, staff, local, state, business and civic groups.

The event was well attended by local elementary school students. Also in attendance were AWC students, instructors and staff.

The University of Arizona offered information on their wide variety of degree programs for the student that envisions a career working in a field that protects the environment.

The Early Childhood Education Club demonstrated making hats from old newspapers, and the AWC Press Club had a popular game of toss-the-newspaper, with red Western Voice cups as prizes.

The Cocopah Cultural Resource displayed an extensive collection of replica artifacts.

They answered questions about the importance of preserving and appreciating the past and about how studying the sustainable practices from the past could be applied to life today.

The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality provided an overview of how they are working to achieve the following goals:

  • Protect, access and monitor the quality of Arizona’s air, water, and land
  • Promote statewide conservation, recycling and pollution prevention
  • Advocate Arizona’s unique environmental needs at the national level
  • Ensure compliance with environmental laws and rules
  • Coordinate and oversee cleanups of contaminated soil and groundwater across the state
  • Inform and educate the public through a variety of seminars, workshops and presentations.
  • Provide technical support and assistance to individuals, businesses and municipalities to help them comply with environmental standards.

Questions about their work can be answered by visiting the web site

The Human Development Club used recycled materials to provide fun crafts for the grade school kids, including recycled toilet paper rolls to make dragons that breathed tissue paper fire, and plastic bottle parts to make flowers and turtles.

The City of Yuma Utilities Division displayed a diorama on how snow and rain in the mountains run off into the lower elevations, providing water for a variety of uses like irrigating crops. One of their awareness projects is to inform the public that so-called “flushable” wipes are not really “flushable.” They cost the city thousands of dollars in maintenance and replacement of pumps.

The division is also working to create an awareness of how every person in the community can help to keep our sewer systems cleaner and more efficient and save the city money on maintenance. A YouTube video titled “F.O.G.,” which can be viewed at, tells how Yuma residents can get their own Scraper and Fat Can Cover so they can get started on keeping your drains and sewers clean.

Arizona Public Service demonstrated the public service part of its name by engaging the public in the importance of conserving energy and utilizing energy safely. Their policy is that conservation is good for the public and also good for their business. When the public draws less power, they have less maintenance and less work providing excess power, a win-win for everyone. Of course, they had give-away items to help remind people to be safe and conscious around electricity.

One important point made by the Sustainability Fair overall is that everyone is an invaluable part of the environment, and several groups promoted increased fitness and health among employees and students, including booths and demonstrations from Sonoran Cycles, Yuma United Mixed Martial Arts and AWC Wellness @Work as well as yoga and Zumba workshops.

Also included in the array of offerings at the Fair were edibles and drinkables. For example, the Student Government Association sold snow cones – made in a machine run solar power in the spirit of environmental consciousness.

Photos by AWC Photo Services

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