Jun 18 2010

Candler and the Care of Creation

More and more religious people and congregations are returning to the importance of caring for God’s creation as part of responsible living. Did you know there are over 1000 references in the Bible to the Creation, but only 490 references to heaven?! Candler as a theology school, training and forming religious scholars, ministers, and leaders, has taken many steps to live more responsibly and in better harmony with the earth over which humanity has been given stewardship (Genesis 1:26).

From l., Candler Creation Keepers President Jason Myers, Emory Sustainability's Ciannat Howett, and Anthropology professor Dr. Peggy Barlett

Theology Garden

Created in April 2010 next to the second floor entrance of the Candler School of Theology, Emory’s eighth educational garden is a product of the collaborative efforts of the Candler Creation Keepers and the Office of Sustainability Initiates. The 100%  organic garden contains several herbs, such as basil, sage, oregano, thyme and rosemary, as well as a large variety of foods, including blackberries, blueberries, radishes, carrots, tomatoes, beets, peas, squashes, eggplants, and several types of leaf vegetables.

Candler Creation Keepers

On of the newest student groups at Candler is the Candler Creation Keepers. The group has raised funds for and oversaw the construction and planting of the Theology Garden. The group tends the garden – picking weeds, fertilizing, and harvesting the herbs and veggies – while educating fellow students on food and the theological importance of creation stewardship. The Creation Keepers also helped with several Earth Week activities in April of this year, including promoting composting among Theology students, faculty, and staff.

Our LEED Building

Candler’s main building, shared with Emory’s Center for Ethics, is a state of the art, five-story environmentally friendly classroom and office space.  Like all new buildings that Emory builds, Candler’s building reached LEED certification (at the Silver level). Emory’s 17 buildings on campus with LEED designation save energy and water, feature improved air quality, are sited appropriately – such as in areas with public transportation, and are constructed using a percentage of recycled, local or rapidly renewable building materials.

Make a Pledge Today! Emory has developed a Personal Sustainability Pledge, addressing personal behaviors related to energy, sustainable food, water conservation, green space, commuting, recycling, and other sustainability issues when at Emory and at home. The pledge is very sophisticated, calculating exactly what the carbon impact of your current sustainable practices is – how many cars are you keeping off the road, how many acres of forest and gallons of gasoline you are conserving – and what impact your pledged actions will have in the future. Take the pledge right now!


Jun 11 2010

Emory & the Environment

In case you hadn’t heard, Emory has a well-established program in green building — currently having one of the largest inventories by square footage of LEED-certified green buildings among campuses in America.  We have 13 LEED Silver or Gold buildings—including the Theology/Ethics Building—and counting.

Here are some of Emory’s Green Highlights—check back next week for more on the Greening of Emory, including Candler’s initiatives and what you can do at home, at school, and in your places of worship!

Emory Awards and Highlights

Bike Emory. Emory, Fuji Bikes, and Bicycle South bike shop have teamed up to provide all of Emory access to discounted bikes, on-campus bike repairs, free bike-share program, and more.

Food. Buy Local-Emory does! Emory has set a goal of providing 75 percent local or sustainably grown food in the hospitals and cafeterias by 2015. Organic Market Boxes are USDA certified fruits and veggies coming in three sizes—order yours online and pick up on campus the next week! Additionally, the Educational Gardens around campus—including the Theology Garden, shown here on the Sustainability Map—aim to provide fresh food and herbs to the community and get people reconnected to dirt, and water, and sunshine, and real food!

Recycling and Composting. Emory sent off it’s 3900 graduates this year with its first Zero Waste Commencement celebration. Emory diverted over 1900 pounds plastic bottles, aluminum cans, food waste, and compostable plates and service to recycling or composting bins. Speaking for the compostable and recyclable materials, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who gave the keynote address, said, “I’ll be back…as healthy garden soil and recycled goods” (not really). More and more of Candler’s events are Zero Waste, and we even have our own compost bin!

Emory Academics. At last count, Emory was teaching 129 courses with a sustainability-related curriculum in disciplines across the campus, such as medicine, law, ethics, theology, anthropology, spanish, philosophy, journalism, and English. 34 of 43 Emory departments had at least one course related to sustainability–that’s 79%! Emory College already has majors and minors in Environmental Science and will soon have  a Sustainability minor.

Make a Pledge Today! Emory has developed a Personal Sustainability Pledge, addressing personal behaviors related to energy, sustainable food, water conservation, green space, commuting, recycling, and other sustainability issues when at Emory and at home. The pledge is very sophisticated, calculating exactly what the carbon impact of your current sustainable practices is – how many cars are you keeping off the road, how many acres of forest and gallons of gasoline you are conserving – and what impact your pledged actions will have in the future. Take the pledge right now!

Check back next week for more about what Candler is doing to be sustainable, plus even more ways for you to get involved. Care of the Creation is all of our God-given responsibility (Genesis 2:15) – so let’s get to it!


Feb 27 2009

Environmental Sustainability at Candler

Candler is proud to be a part of a Green movement that has been taking place across campus here at Emory for a number of years. As you may have heard, our new Theology and Ethics Building was designed and built with sustainability in mind; in fact, we’ve applied for LEED Silver certification, and our application is now in review. The LEED certification is the standard for Green building in the United States. All new buildings that Emory ever builds will be LEED certified. In fact, Emory has the most Green building space of any university in the country! Emory was even named 2008 Distinguished Conservationist of the Year by the Georgia Conservancy.

Candler and Emory have been up to several new Green initiatives lately. Last December, the University was closed for two days over the winter break. With mandatory building shut-downs, Emory saved over $19,000 in electrical costs! In just two days! Candler is in the midst of investigating how to install a system that will shut down the air handlers in the building overnight, which will have no noticeable effect on the school during the day and will cut between 10-15% off of our power bill and consumption!



Another campaign Emory is working on is the White Paper Recycling Campaign. Emory Recycles currently handles mixed and white paper, plastics #1-6, corrugated cardboard, phone books, magazines, glass, aluminum, scrap metal, and Styrofoam. In terms of re-selling recycled goods, far and away the most money comes from white paper. With the downturn in the economy, prices for raw recycled goods have plummeted. For instance, mixed paper has gone from $90-95/ton to $0-5/ton. White paper, however, has retained much of its value. But white paper must be separated from colored paper in order to be sold at the higher price ($170-180/ton). So Emory Recycles is launching an informational campaign to educate students, faculty, and staff about separating mixed and white paper. Plus the Theology is getting 50 new recycling bins for mixed and white paper.



Finally, food services around Emory are switching from paper, plastic, and Styrofoam packaging, plates, and cutlery to sustainable and compostable products! I know! At Cox Hall, Emory’s main food court, there are NO Styrofoam containers any more. The containers are all made of recycled sugar cane and straws and clear “plastic” lids are made from corn. No petro-chemicals, plus you can compost all of it! My entire lunch (above) came from renewable sources and then went into my home compost bin (below). How fantastic! Go Emory!