Indiana University Bloomington students voted in favor of creating a Sustainability Fund for the promotion of 'green' initiatives and projects on campus.
With the help of the Student Sustainability Council and its 18 member organizations, 11,266 students signed a petition for the establishment of the fund, which will be supplied by a voluntary $5 fee offered during course registration. To make this option available, the council had to collect signatures in support of the Sustainability Fund from one-quarter of the enrolled student body — nearly 10,000 students — by the end of the fall semester.
Students can choose to donate to the fund when course registration opens on April 4, 2011; and the option to donate will be available every subsequent registration period. The sustainability council will begin allocating fund proceeds during the fall 2011 semester.
Students and student organizations will have the opportunity to recommend on-campus sustainability-related initiatives and projects. In collaboration with the IU Office of Sustainability and the Campus Sustainability Advisory Board, the council will review proposals and allocate the money raised each semester. Potential projects might include enhancing transportation infrastructure, extending recycling coverage, purchasing motion-sensor lighting and installing solar panels.
The Student Sustainability Council is made up of representatives from both undergraduate and graduate student organizations and student government bodies. It was created during the fall 2009 semester in an effort to promote communication and collaboration among organizations interested in advancing environmentalism and sustainability at IU Bloomington.
The group's central objectives are to advise the IU Office of Sustainability from the students' perspectives, to help to reduce the negative effects of the university on the natural environment, to promote social and economic justice, and to engage the IU student body in issues of sustainability.