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Issue No. 12
 
February 15,
2016
End in Sight for Porter Ranch Gas Leak
 
Nearly five months have passed since the October 23 Porter Ranch gas leak and officials are now confirming that the gas leak is temporarily stopped, but will not be plugged permanently until the end of February or early March. Southern California Gas Co. discovered the leak from an underground well in the vast Aliso Canyon Storage Complex north of Porter Ranch.
 
Due to the leak, thousands of Porter Ranch and neighboring community residents have been relocated to temporary housing. People have been experiencing health issues such as headaches, nausea, nosebleeds, and dizziness. With so many people suffering from this ecological disaster, Governor Brown declared a State of Emergency on January 6. Los Angeles County also filed criminal charges against Southern California Gas Co. on February 2, and ten other state, federal or local agencies are suing and/or investigating the company.
Faculty Spotlight
 
Dr. Loraine Lundquist has been teaching physics, math, and sustainability at CSUN since 2012. With a PhD in physics, she worked as an astrophysicist researcher before transitioning to teaching full-time. This is her fourth semester teaching courses in the sustainability minor.

Dr. Lundquist has been involved with conservation since she decided at 12 years old to start giving her allowance to the World Wildlife Fund, although she had never thought of pursuing it as a career. While reading an article on climate change and fully allowing the somberness of the information to sink in, it became apparent to her that she was going to spend her full time effort working on this. Lundquist decided to take action through teaching and educating her students and is now pushing her comfort zone as she starts to lead activism within the Los Angeles community. She is currently advocating for carbon fee-and-dividend legislation, protesting fossil fuel expansion, and pushing LA to adopt a 100% renewable energy plan.

Being able to work with the Institute for Sustainability has given Dr. Lundquist an opportunity to interact with students who are empowering themselves with information and tools for creating change. “I am so grateful I found this Institute and the amazing students I work with every day,” said Lundquist.
CSUN's First Climate Action Plan Published!
 
On October 7, 2015 President Harrison joined university presidents nationally in signing the Climate Commitment with Second Nature. The commitment integrates carbon neutrality with climate resilience and provides a systems approach to mitigating and adapting to a changing climate. On January 15, 2016 CSUN submitted a required component of the commitment, its comprehensive Climate Action Plan. Goals set forth in CSUN's Climate Action Plan, are to achieve 1990 greenhouse gas emission levels by 2020 and net zero emissions by 2040. This document defines a path to achieving these goals and describes the strategies that will be implemented.

Another requirement of the university's commitment is to develop a joint campus-community task force to ensure alignment of the Plan with community goals and to facilitate joint action, which is underway now.
Institute Participates in 7th Annual Diversity Day Event
 
Saturday, February 6, social and environmental activists gathered for the 7th Annual Diversity Day hosted by the Department of Social Work. The agenda was to discuss diversity and the social and environmental boundaries that society has created which we must break down and rebuild. Speakers pushed the envelope by talking about uncomfortable, but necessary issues such as white privilege, the systematic denial of self-determination in the U.S., and the detrimental impacts of material capitalism and climate change, among other topics. 

The event was very interactive and helped bring different organizations together working toward the same goal, equality. The Institute for Sustainability tabled at the event to educate attendees about campus efforts to create a more sustainable environment.

CSUN AppJam 2016


This March, think fast and win big! All CSUN students- undergraduate and graduate- are invited to compete in CSUN’s mobile app competition. You can compete by creating a mobile app that solves a real-life problem for the campus or community. AppJam 2016 winners will have the chance to win cash prizes and start-up consulting services to take their apps to the next level.

The deadline to register your team for AppJam 2016 is Thursday, March 3. Get more information and register here.
Just Sustainability: Hope for the Commons

August 7-9, 2016
Seattle University

The Seattle University Center for Environmental Justice and Sustainability (CEJS) invites papers for its second biennial conference. Attendees will have a unique opportunity to connect with researchers, businesses, and communities that are bringing Environmental Justice and Sustainability issues to the fore front of public discourse. 
If you are interested in learning more about this amazing opportunity please visit their website by clicking here. Authors should submit abstracts of no more than 200 words by
 February 22, 2016.

Free Water Conservation Items!

LADWP is offering customers opportunities to make their homes more efficient while also saving money! With the city of Los Angeles experiencing a very severe drought, LADWP is giving out free water conservation items such as low flow shower heads and aerators and offering many money saving rebates including the California Friendly Landscape Incentive Program, where you can get money to replace your lawn with native and drought tolerant plants.

Do not miss out on these money saving opportunities!

Mailing address:
Institute for Sustainability
18111 Nordhoff Street
Santa Susana Hall 116
Northridge, Ca 91330

Phone: (818) 677-7710
Email: sustainability@csun.edu
  
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