Earth Week


Gerard Millman

Students, Faculty and Everett community members gather in the common space of Whitehorse hall at EvCC for the 2022 Plant Swap put on by the sustainability team and the green fee committee of EvCC.

Over the third week of April, students of Everett Community College and members of the Everett community gathered together to take part in a string of Earth Week activities put on by the members of the EvCC Green Fee committee and the sustainability department.

The Green Fee committee is made up of students at EvCC and it allows students to make proposals to the committee that would make Everett a greener campus using college funding.

Jiho Smith (Left) and Mackenzie Smith check out some of the options that were presented at the EvCC Plant Swap. (Gerard Millman)

The committee, as well as the sustainability department, came together to plan a series of events that were both green and fun to commemorate Earth Week. “Humans often learn best when presented with fun,” said Sustainability and Space Manager Molly Beeman. “Earth Week activities are geared to promote sustainability and help educate participants about the harm humans are capable of creating,” Beeman states.

This year’s events would be the 13th year that EvCC has celebrated Earth Week. Before the pandemic, events like the plant swap would see over 1800 participants. This year, “We’ll be taking care to not overcrowd and manage head counts,” said Beeman. This year’s plant swap saw close to 550 people come out.

There were other events all over campus celebrating Earth Week, such as a conversation on how to create bird friendly communities, electronics and styrofoam recycling, a lecture Cisco of Gardening with Cisco and having it all culminate with a park clean up of Thornton A. Sullivan park in Everett.

The park cleanup saw volunteers across the road from the park planting trees along the forested part of the side of the road next to the free way. Close to 15 volunteers of a variety of ages showed up and worked for almost two hours.

The Earth week events come at a time when climate scientists are in consensus about the condition of the earth’s climate. According to NASA the earth’s temperature “in 2016 and 2020 were tied for warmest since 1880.”

Barbara Keithly a local Everett resident sorts through her options of snapdragons at the 2022 Plant swap. (Gerard Millman)

NASA also states that, “A consensus on climate change and its human cause exists. Multiple studies published in peer-reviewed scientific journals show that human activities are the primary cause of the observed climate-warming trend over the past century.”

Encouraging students and community members to get involved in green events is a goal of the sustainability team at Everett. “Get involved. Get involved in student, city, county, state and federal government! The Everett Sustainability Web page [is] a great place to start.” said Beaman.

The Everett Climate Action Plan, which was originally adopted by the college in 2009 and revised twice most recently in 2020, has six key areas of focus. Energy conservation, food and garden, curriculum, transportation mitigation, resource and waste management and student management.

For more information on the sustainability team and the green fee committee you can check out the Everett sustainability page Here. You can also check out the Everett sustainability blog for info on events and what you can do Here. Upcoming events to look out for include on May 20th a Bike Day, and in June participation in the northwest neighborhood cleanup.“Students are the folks who will inherit the planet…seems like a no-brainer to take care of the planet we live on?” said Beaman.