Sustainability - Consumption

Being a consumer comes with responsibilities. Everything you buy affects the world you live in. Buying locally grown food or locally made items will cause that money you spent to stay in your community and multiply. Every dollar you spend is showing your support for that item and where it was made. In some cases your purchase may support child and slave labor in other countries. Learn about where it was made and how it was made before you buy something. Every purchase matters.

Food

Wartburg Garden
Students in the 2009 IS 101: Sustainability came up with the project of starting a vegetable garden that would be located on the corner of 5th Ave NW and 7th St NW.  On Earth Day, garden planners and volunteers got to work constructing a fence around the garden plot, measuring and marking rows, and planting the first seeds of the garden.  Here are some interesting and quick facts about the garden:

  • Produce from the garden goes to Dining Services to be incorporated into the meals they provide
  • Excess produce will go to the Northeast Iowa Food Bank
  • The creation of the garden led to the ability for partial composting to come back to Wartburg
  • All seeds and start-up plants were purchased by Dining Services

The garden is sustained with volunteer support, and we need YOU to volunteer! Knowing how to grow your own food can be a valuable skill when you are on a tight budget or learning to live more sustainably. If you are interested, email sustainability@wartburg.edu with “Garden” in the subject line.

Buy Fresh, Buy Local
Buying locally produced food helps farmers in your region. In turn these farmers are more likely to reinvest their money into their own community. This cycle will help strengthen your community. Buying local will also help the environment. Locally produced food travels on average 1,500 miles fewer than most items found in a supermarket. This means less resources involved in packaging, distribution and transportation. Buying local can also help your health. Since the food doesn’t have as far to travel it isn’t long after the food is picked that you buy it. This allows the produce to retain a higher nutritional value.
Buy Fresh, Buy Local

Reduce & Reuse

Water Bottle Fillers Wartburg has new bottle fillers in the Science Center, Luther Hall, Saemann Student center and Vogel Library. Please choose these over bottles water.

Dining Services Wartburg’s Dining Services department has made great strides toward becoming more sustainable.  A couple of the more major achievements have been going tray-less in the Mensa and purchasing front-loading washers.  Going tray-less has led to savings in water, the energy needed to heat the water, the number of dishes that need to be done, and the amount of food and water waste generated.  The front-loading washers, over the period of 48 days, saved 14,976 gallons of water and have decreased the number of loads that need to be done each day.

Extra Tips

  • Don’t be shy to ask for smaller portions if you don’t want a full one.
  • Take your own container for drinks.
  • *Eat in the Mensa with “real” dishware.
  • Use a cone for ice cream.

Purchasing

Fair Trade
The 2011 US Department of Labor’s guide to products made of slave and child labor is a great guide for making social justice guided purchasing decisions. The Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA) of 2005 requires the Department of Labor’s Bureau of International Affairs (ILAB) to “develop and make available to the public a list of goods from countries that ILAB has reason to believe are produced by forced labor or child labor in violation of international standards.” ILAB published its initial List on September 10, 2009, which included 122 goods from 58 countries. ILAB published its first update to the List on December 15, 2012, adding 6 goods and 12 countries. The 2011 update adds 2 good and 1 country to the List, a relatively small number compared to the 2009 initial List and the 2010 update. The List includes only those goods for which we are able to document the use of child or forced labor in their production. Given the pervasive nature of these global problems, it is likely that many more goods are produced through these egregious forms of labor use.
http://www.dol.gov/ilab/programs/ocft/PDF/2011TVPRA.pdf

Thrift Stores

Trinkets and Togs
114 10th Street SW, Waverly
(319) 352-8029 (next to the Fainting Goat)
Store Hours: M, Tu, W, F 9:00am-7:00pm Thu 9:00am-8:00pm Sat 8:00am-6:00pm

Goodwill
400 Technology Place SW Waverly
(319) 352-8804
Store Hours: Mon-Sat 9:00am-10:00pm Sun 10:00am-8:00pm

Consignment Stores

Neighborhood Closet
1305 W. Bremer Ave., Waverly
(319) 352-4411
Store Hours: Mon-Sat 9:00am-8:00pm Sun 12:00pm-6:00pm

Main Street Exchange
309 Main Street, Cedar Falls
(319) 268-7243
Store Hours: Mon-Fri 10:00am-6:00pm Saturday 10:00am to 5:00pm

Treasure Chest
922 La Porte Rd  Waterloo
(319) 287-6773
Store Hours: M, Wed-Sat 10:00am-6:00pm Tues 10:00am-8:00pm

  • Use an energy star fridge in your room and use only one.
  • Consider the packaging or origin of your food.