Sustainability board formed to make Topeka eco-friendly

Danielle Clark

The term “going green” can be heard spilling from the mouths of people across the United States. From increased use of alternative energy to more people carpooling, “going green” is everywhere. That is why a sustainability board has been formed to help advise the city on good environmental practices.

The board will be composed of five to eight citizens of Topeka, with certain positions reserved for citizens who specialize in areas concerning the environment. Angel Romero, chief of staff for the Washburn Student Government Association, will sit on the sustainability board, as well as Lacy Bisnett, president of “Washburn All Green.”

“There is a whole host of students, both inside Washburn government and out, that are really interested in environmental issues and sustainability,” said Romero. The board will not be hierarchical; all members will be equal in power and clout.

One goal of the board will be to keep college students and young people in Topeka.

“College students are looking for a city that is cutting edge and really progressive,” said Romero. He said students may be more drawn to Lawrence because of its progressive environmental policies, such as its city wide recycling program. Present-day students are more environmentally conscious, and more progressive environmental policies would help draw more students and young people to Washburn and Topeka, said Romero.

The sustainability board will deal strictly with environmental issues facing the community. The board has not yet been commissioned, but should be formed within the next month. An e-mail has been sent to students in an attempt to recruit more members for the board. Students can contact the sustainability board by talking to Romero or e-mailing the board at its Web site. Students who have concerns or ideas for bettering the community can also contact city council member Deb Swank.