Dartmouth U Students Spend Summer Vacation on Green Road Trip

Riding the "Vehicle for Change," a team of 15 Dartmouth College grads and students "dedicated to diminishing environmental and economic issues through education," clamored aboard the Big Green Bus to drive 12,000 miles across the US. On June 17, they stopped off at the Timberland store in Manhattan to unveil the newly retrofit 1989 MCI bus's eco-features. Where are they headed next and what are they up to?
The 40-state trek stopped in Washington DC on Friday to meet with Legislators from 1pm to 5pm. As the twitter feed announced: speak with Senator Jeanne Shaheen and House Representative Dave Reichert! w00t! Jun 18, 2009 07:06 pm

After a baseball game with alumni, they move on to North and South Carolinas, meeting with Charleston's Coastal Conservation League. Then crossing the south to New Orleans for July 4th, they volunteer at Green Works. Onto Texas, over to California and Yosemite, turning eastbound through Utah, up to Minnesota in August, on to Detroit, Pennsylvania, and back home to New Hampshire. Check the big green bus schedule to see where to find them greening your town.

So how's riding a bus across the country eco-friendly? It's solar-paneled and fueled with waste vegetable oil (WVO). And the interior is retrofit with bamboo floors, VOC-free paints, and other green building materials. Now let's see the carbon footprint when that info is posted.

How's it educational? Workshops cover: Consumption and Recycling 101, Introduction to Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency Practicum, Guide to Green Food Choices, and Take Action: Vote (their subjects/my titles). Eco-friendly hand-outs are available from student presenters in this sustainable science fair on wheels.

For the fifth year on this journey, the crew members will post blogs about their experiences (meeting with the NRDC, visiting green roofs, etc.), podcasts, videos, and interact with you via sponsor Changents with renewable energy-powered WiFi on board.

Other sponsors include Waste Management, Timberland and Newsman's Own. Think the fridge is stocked with Butter Boom Popcorn, Sockarooni Sauce, Organic Virgin Lemonade, Sweet Enough Honey Flax Flakes, and "In Crust we Trust" pizza?

Among the engineering, biology, literature, and public policy student team, Kari Cholnoky, who's majoring in Environmental Studies and Studio Art, says:

As a member of the Big Green Bus crew of 2009 (which is the weirdest group of students ever assembled) I have decided to turn Pro. I'm going to educate the living daylights out of anyone that comes my way in an effort to raise awareness of environmental issues and help people make smart decisions on how to live more sustainably. Why not? Get it on.

Want to host the bus along the route? Send an invite to thebiggreenbus@dartmouth.edu.

More on green students:
Fashion Students Rise to Challenge of Making Cycling Stylish
Maker Faire 09: ISKME Teaches Kids to Design Sustainability
7 Out of 10 College Bound Students, Prefer Green Universities
Emory U Students Pledge to Do 3 Green Things

Tags: Biofuels | Buses | Energy Efficiency | Solar Power | United States

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