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Sustainability

Community    Students    Student and Alumni    Sustainability    ColoradoSPH at CSU    Community Health    One Health

Edible Bugs for Healthier and Greener Future: Master of Public Health Student's Capstone Sheds Light on Sustainable Food Systems

Bugs for dinner? It may sound like a scene straight out of a sci-fi movie, but edible bugs are making their way into the spotlight for a compelling reason: they may hold the key to a healthier and greener future. While the thought of eating insects may trigger apprehension for some, insects have been used for food and medicine by many cultures for centuries – up to 80 percent of the world's nations, particularly in tropical areas, eat insects. As our planet grapples with mounting challenges like climate change and food insecurity, the notion of turning to edible bugs as an eco-friendly option is capturing the attention of public health researchers, including Shaylee Warner, a recent graduate from the Colorado School of Public Health at Colorado State University.


Author Rachel Larson | Publish Date June 14, 2023
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Community    Community and Practice    Sustainability    Environment    Worker Health

Top Tips for How Academia Can Be More Sustainable

As global climate change continues to threaten the health of the planet and impact our lives, sustainable business practices are becoming increasingly important. As part of earning my Master’s in Public Health at the Colorado School of Public Health, I created and performed a sustainability audit of the Center for Health, Work & Environment. I specifically studied the travel practices of the Center, as travel is a significant producer of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions, one of the major contributing factors to climate change. As part of the Center’s mission to help organizations create sustainable workforces, it aims to promote the sustainability of the planet by lowering its own carbon footprint. 

Based on the results of my project, I’ve created the following tips for ways academic organizations can decrease their carbon footprint, specifically regarding travel practices. 

1. Perform an office carbon audit to measure your organization’s carbon footprint All types of organizations contribute to GHG emissions in a variety of ways. By identifying the various sources of carbon emissions and energy usage in the workplace, you can effectively create strategies for reduction. 

2. Conduct and promote travel in an eco-friendly manner Air travel is one of the fastest-growing sources of GHG emissions, resulting in a large environmental impact, and globally contributes to 2.8% of the world’s total CO2 emissions. Car travel also has a negative environmental impact. Flying direct and to the closest airport to your destination, taking public transportation or ride shares on trips, and incentivizing carpooling and public transportation are achievable ways to decrease the environmental impact of individual travel.   

3. Host virtual events Holding events is an integral part of conducting business, specifically in academic settings, and allows people to form and build relationships, network, and share knowledge. However, in-person events also leave behind a considerably large carbon footprint. Hosting virtual conferences and events can cater to a broader audience while lowering the carbon footprint associated with travel. Going virtual also offers a more time-and cost-efficient alternative for both hosts and attendees. Zoom's webinar function and Zoom breakout rooms are engaging ways to hold meetings in a virtual format, enabling more realistic and personable interactions between attendees. 

4. Redesign meetingsBy consolidating meeting days and allowing them to be hosted virtually, fewer employees are required to be present in the office throughout the week. Decreasing the number of days employees need to travel to the office decreases their commuter-related carbon emissions. Holding offsite meetings in a central location with close proximity to public transportation enables employees to travel via public transportation instead of driving. 

The American Public Transportation Association estimates that public transit saves roughly 1.4 billion gallons of gas annually, which translates to about 14 million tons of CO2. Traveling by bus is about 30% more emission-efficient than traveling by single-occupancy vehicle and traveling by rail is about 75% more emission-efficient than traveling by single-occupancy vehicle. 

5. Encourage remote work and telecommuting 
At the Center for Health, Work & Environment, employees commute roughly 2,000 miles per week, emitting an estimate of 1800 pounds of CO2. Encouraging employees in flexible roles to work from home a few days a week can greatly reduce the amount of CO2 emitted in commuting. Consider using online applications as a way to foster connectedness and communication while employees are not physically working together. Slack or Microsoft Teams are popular solutions that allow employees to continue inter-office communication in real-time while working remotely.   

6. Create a healthy meeting and event catering policy
A vegetarian diet greatly reduces an individual and organization’s carbon footprint. A meat-based diet contributes to over 50% of GHG contribution, while a vegetarian diet contributes to only about 9%. Consider offering only vegetarian meal options at employee gatherings or meetings of all sizes. Also consider ordering from local restaurants, which not only reduces travel time for food delivery (reducing GHG emissions) but is also an opportunity to support the local economy. Don’t forget to tell caterers when you do and don’t need items like plastic or compostable utensils, cups and plates to cut down on waste.


Author Laura Veith | Publish Date May 04, 2020
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Colorado School of Public Health In the News

The Denver Post

“Hear/Say”, a groundbreaking art exhibition, explores the effects of high-concentration cannabis

news outletThe Denver Post
Publish DateJune 11, 2024

At the intersection of art, science, and health, BRDG Project Gallery at 3300 Tejon St. in Denver hosting “Hear/Say”, a groundbreaking art exhibition exploring the effects of high-concentration cannabis. Sponsored by the Colorado School of Public Health, the show is a science-based examination that encourages conversation and open-minded understanding of a controversial subject through the artistic lens of local and national artists. The public is invited to view the exhibition from June 14 through July 14, 2024 during regular BRDG Project gallery hours. 

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Cancer Network

Learning to “Aim High” Within Male-Dominated Fields in Public Health

news outletCancer Network
Publish DateJune 10, 2024

Within public health, the field of health economics is one that has historically been male-dominated. Forging a path to find your voice and learning to stand out as a woman can be difficult. During a Breaking Barriers: Women in Oncology discussion, Cathy Bradley, PhD, and Lindsay M. Sabik, PhD, both spoke about why they chose to work in this field and how they both have had to overcame challenges hold the positions they have today.

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Healthline

Man with First Human Case of H5N2 Bird Flu Variant Dies in Mexico

news outletHealthline
Publish DateJune 07, 2024

A 59-year-old man in Mexico who contracted a type of bird flu known as A(H5N2) died in April, the World Health Organization said June 5Trusted Source. This is the first laboratory-confirmed human case of infection with an A(H5N2) virus worldwide, and the first avian H5 virus reported in a person in Mexico, the WHO said. “These viruses, such as H5N1 and now H5N2, primarily circulate among birds, with occasional spillover into mammals, including humans, under the right circumstances,” said Daniel Pastula, MD, MHS, chief of neuro-infectious diseases and global neurology at the University of Colorado and Colorado School of Public Health.

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STAT News

Smoke exposure from California’s wildfires linked to 52,000 early deaths, study says

news outletSTAT News
Publish DateJune 07, 2024

When large swaths of the East Coast were shrouded in wildfire smoke last summer, scientists in California grimly joked that maybe, finally, power brokers in New York and Washington, D.C. would be spurred to act on the burning issue that has long plagued the West Coast. Despite wildfire seasons that regularly burn hundreds of thousands of acres in California alone each year, researchers know relatively little about the long-term effects of chronic wildfire smoke on the body, and funding to reduce the known harms of exposure is scarce.

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