60 YEARS OF EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE

EARTH MONTH

With its focus on renewable energy and low emissions, California is a leader in sustainability issues. The CSU is a proud partner in this commitment to finding solutions to the state’sand the world'smost pressing environmental challenges. Efforts include a university-wide sustainability policy​ and membership in We Are Still In​, an organization that supports climate action. 

The beauty of the earth abounds at each of our 23 campus communities, from sunny San Diego to the Central Valley’s lush fields and orchards to the towering redwoods along the north coast. These sights are constant reminders that we must protect our most valuable resource. Fun fact: Earth Month was founded by San José State​ alumnus Gaylord Nelson. Here are just a few of the steps our faculty, students, alumni and staff have taken toward a greener tomorrow.

From Tree Campus USA to Bee Campus USA to AASHE’s Gold Stars rating, sustainability is top of mind for students, faculty, staff and administration at CSU Channel Islands.

Channel Islands

From Tree Campus USA to Bee Campus USA to AASHE’s Gold Stars rating, sustainability is top of mind for students, faculty, staff and administration at CSU Channel Islands.

“We have a responsibility as an institution to have as little impact as we possibly can and to be good stewards of our resources,” says CSUCI Sustainability and Energy Manager Roxane Beigel-Coryell. “We have a really important role to be leaders in researching ways to climate change and to ensure a bright future for all of us.”  

“We have a responsibility as an institution to have as little impact as we possibly can and to be good stewards of our resources,” says CSUCI Sustainability and Energy Manager Roxane Beigel-Coryell (not pictured). “We have a really important role to be leaders in researching ways to combat climate change and to ensure a bright future for all of us.” (Photo predates COVID-19.)


“We have a responsibility as an institution to have as little impact as we possibly can and to be good stewards of our resources,” says CSUCI Sustainability and Energy Manager Roxane Beigel-Coryell. “We have a really important role to be leaders in researching ways to climate change and to ensure a bright future for all of us.”
In 2018, Chico State became the first CSU in the 23-campus system to eliminate the use of plastic straws. Alternatives are available and encouraged, and the university embraces an educational model regarding the impact of single-use plastics.

Chico

In 2018, Chico State became the first among the CSU's 23 campuses to eliminate the use of plastic straws. Alternatives are available and encouraged, and the university embraces an educational model regarding the impact of single-use plastics.

Biology graduate student Mitch Bamford (center) uses a drip torch to intentionally ignite fires at Big Chico Creek Ecological Reserve (BCCER). The BCCER regularly partners with Terra Fuego, Firestorm and Cal Fire to conduct prescribed burns, which reduce fuels, mitigate fire risk on the property and provide a training opportunity for Chico State students and current and future fire professionals. The BCCER has been using prescribed burns as a way of reducing fire danger and teaching students about resilient ecosystems for more than a decade. (Jason Halley/University Photographer/CSU Chico)  

Biology graduate student Mitch Bamford uses a drip torch to intentionally ignite fires at Big Chico Creek Ecological Reserve (BCCER). The BCCER regularly partners with Terra Fuego, Firestorm and Cal Fire to conduct prescribed burns, which reduce fuels, mitigate fire risk on the property and provide a training opportunity for Chico State students and current and future fire professionals. The BCCER has been using prescribed burns as a way of reducing fire danger and teaching students about resilient ecosystems for more than a decade. Photo: Jason Halley

Biology graduate student Mitch Bamford (center) uses a drip torch to intentionally ignite fires at Big Chico Creek Ecological Reserve (BCCER). The BCCER regularly partners with Terra Fuego, Firestorm and Cal Fire to conduct prescribed burns, which reduce fuels, mitigate fire risk on the property and provide a training opportunity for Chico State students and current and future fire professionals. The BCCER has been using prescribed burns as a way of reducing fire danger and teaching students about resilient ecosystems for more than a decade. (Jason Halley/University Photographer/CSU Chico)
Chris Baysdorfer, Ph.D., professor of biological sciences, discusses plant specimens with his students. Cal State East Bay’s Green Biome Institute (GBI) preserves some of California’s most endangered plants, creating a world-leading genetic profile of each plant. All information will be published freely to the public and academic communities. The goal is to be a student-supported partner to plant societies and botanical gardens for endangered plant genomic analysis in the state. 

East Bay

Chris Baysdorfer, Ph.D., professor of biological sciences, discusses plant specimens with his students. Cal State East Bay’s Green Biome Institute (GBI) preserves some of California’s most endangered plants, creating a world-leading genetic profile of each plant. All information will be published freely to the public and academic communities. The goal is to be a student-supported partner to plant societies and botanical gardens for endangered plant genomic analysis in California. (Photo predates COVID-19.)

The GBI provides great educational opportunities for several hundred undergraduate and graduate students each year. Part of GBI’s work is to rank and select plants based on their endangered priority and traits that can potentially improve agriculture and human lives. The program is free to partnering institutions. The institute has established relationships with six of the premier botanical gardens in California.  

The GBI provides great educational opportunities for several hundred undergraduate and graduate students each year. Part of GBI’s work is to rank and select plants based on their endangered priority and traits that can potentially improve agriculture and human lives. The program is free to partnering organizations. The institute has established relationships with six of the premier botanical gardens in California.

The GBI provides great educational opportunities for several hundred undergraduate and graduate students each year. Part of GBI’s work is to rank and select plants based on their endangered priority and traits that can potentially improve agriculture and human lives. The program is free to partnering institutions. The institute has established relationships with six of the premier botanical gardens in California.  
Cal State Long Beach’s Erika Holland, Ph.D., professor of marine biology, researches aquatic toxicology, specifically the impact of pollutants on aquatic organisms using receptor, cellular and whole animal endpoints. Her research interests span numerous pollutant classes with a particular focus on chemicals that alter calcium signaling pathways essential to such processes as neurodevelopment and striated muscle function. Dr. Holland uses zebrafish as research tools because they share about 70 percent of their genetic makeup with humans. (Photo predates COVID-19.)  

Long Beach

Cal State Long Beach’s Erika Holland, Ph.D., professor of marine biology, researches aquatic toxicology, specifically the impact of pollutants on aquatic organisms using receptor, cellular and whole animal endpoints. Her research interests span numerous pollutant classes with a particular focus on chemicals that alter calcium signaling pathways essential to such processes as neurodevelopment and striated muscle function. Dr. Holland uses zebrafish as research tools because they share about 70 percent of their genetic makeup with humans. (Photo predates COVID-19.)

Photo: Sean DuFrene

Professor Christine Whitcraft (center) and CSULB students Elishabah Tate-Pulliam (left) and Cody Fees (right) partner with Cal State Fullerton and Orange County Coastkeeper to restore native oysters, in conjunction with restoring eelgrass habitat, November 26, 2019. Olympia oysters were once an important food source for native Californians. Oysters also provide habitat and refuge for organisms, such as octopi, crabs and juvenile fishes, who take shelter on the structure oyster beds provide. Oysters are filter feeders, so they improve water clarity and help stabilize mudflats.  

Professor Christine Whitcraft (center) and CSULB students Elishabah Tate-Pulliam (left) and Cody Fees (right) partner with Cal State Fullerton and Orange County Coastkeeper to restore native oysters, in conjunction with restoring eelgrass habitat, November 26, 2019. Olympia oysters were once an important food source for native Californians. Oysters also provide habitat and refuge for organisms, such as octopi, crabs and juvenile fishes, who take shelter on the structure oyster beds provide. Oysters are filter feeders, so they improve water clarity and help stabilize mudflats.

Photo: Sean DuFrene

Professor Christine Whitcraft (center) and CSULB students Elishabah Tate-Pulliam (left) and Cody Fees (right) partner with Cal State Fullerton and Orange County Coastkeeper to restore native oysters, in conjunction with restoring eelgrass habitat, November 26, 2019. Olympia oysters were once an important food source for native Californians. Oysters also provide habitat and refuge for organisms, such as octopi, crabs and juvenile fishes, who take shelter on the structure oyster beds provide. Oysters are filter feeders, so they improve water clarity and help stabilize mudflats.  
Projects pursuing LEED certification earn points for various green building strategies across several categories. Based on the number of points achieved, a project earns one of four LEED rating levels: Certified, Silver, Gold or Platinum. CSU Monterey Bay’s College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences building has achieved LEED Platinum, the highest certification awarded by the nonprofit U.S. Green Building Council.

MONTEREY BAY

Projects pursuing LEED certification earn points for various green building strategies across several categories. Based on the number of points achieved, a project earns one of four LEED rating levels: Certified, Silver, Gold or Platinum. CSU Monterey Bay’s College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences building has achieved LEED Platinum, the highest certification awarded by the nonprofit U.S. Green Building Council.

This Laundry to Landscape model system installed in Pinnacles Residential Hall collects, filters and irrigates adjacent landscaping with water from eight washing machines. Combined with low-water plumbing fixtures throughout campus, the system decreased potable water use by 26 percent from 2011 to 2019.  

This Laundry to Landscape model system installed in Pinnacles Residential Hall collects, filters and irrigates adjacent landscaping with water from eight washing machines. Combined with low-water plumbing fixtures throughout campus, the system decreased potable water use by 26 percent from 2011 to 2019.

This Laundry to Landscape model system installed in Pinnacles Residential Hall collects, filters and irrigates adjacent landscaping with water from eight washing machines. Combined with low-water plumbing fixtures throughout campus, the system decreased potable water use by 26 percent from 2011 to 2019. 
Second graders from Emmerson Elementary School in Riverside learn about artichokes at the Discovery Garden at Agriscapes at CPP, May 11, 2017. 

POMONA

Second graders from Emmerson Elementary School in Riverside learn about artichokes at the Discovery Garden at Agriscapes at Cal Poly Pomona, May 11, 2017.

Cal Poly Pomona electrical engineering majors Johnny Bautista (center) and Sean McClanahan (left) assist Grid Alternative worker Miguel Rodarte, March 20, 2018. The students volunteered to set up solar panels for low-income families during spring break.  

Cal Poly Pomona electrical engineering majors Johnny Bautista (center) and Sean McClanahan (left) assist Grid Alternative worker Miguel Rodarte, March 20, 2018. The students volunteered to set up solar panels for low-income families during spring break.

Cal Poly Pomona electrical engineering majors Johnny Bautista (center) and Sean McClanahan (left) assist Grid Alternative worker Miguel Rodarte, March 20, 2018. The students volunteered to set up solar panels for low-income families during spring break. 
Cal State San Bernardino geology alumnus Bryan Castillo (MS, Earth and Environmental Sciences, ’19) was among several geologists, students, researchers, and others who traveled from near and far to investigate the damage wrought by the July 4 and 5 quakes near Ridgecrest. 

San Bernardino

Cal State San Bernardino geology alumnus Bryan Castillo was among several geologists, students, researchers, and others who traveled from near and far to investigate the damage wrought by the July 4 and 5 quakes near Ridgecrest in 2019.

Joan E. Fryxell, a Cal State San Bernardino geology professor, led a hike to the San Andreas Fault behind the university campus as part of the annual “Great California ShakeOut” simulated earthquake drill on Oct. 19, 2019  

Joan E. Fryxell, a Cal State San Bernardino geology professor, leads a hike to the San Andreas Fault behind the university campus as part of the annual “Great California ShakeOut” simulated earthquake drill, October 19, 2019.

Joan E. Fryxell, a Cal State San Bernardino geology professor, led a hike to the San Andreas Fault behind the university campus as part of the annual “Great California ShakeOut” simulated earthquake drill on Oct. 19, 2019 
Engineering professor Alicia Kinoshita, Ph.D., and San Diego State students collect environmental samples to assess wildfire damage.  

San Diego

Engineering professor Alicia Kinoshita, Ph.D., (center) and San Diego State students collect environmental samples to assess wildfire damage.

Photo: Kellie Woodhouse

At SDSU's Coastal and Marine Institute Laboratory, students explore the ecology of coastal fishes and other organisms, working in kelp forest, estuarine and salt marsh ecosystems. Photo: Jeffrey Lamont Brown  

At SDSU's Coastal and Marine Institute Laboratory, students explore the ecology of coastal fishes and other organisms, working in kelp forest, estuarine and salt marsh ecosystems.

Photo: Jeffrey Lamont Brown

At SDSU's Coastal and Marine Institute Laboratory, students explore the ecology of coastal fishes and other organisms, working in kelp forest, estuarine and salt marsh ecosystems. Photo: Jeffrey Lamont Brown 
A team of Spartans pedal hundreds of miles along the California coast to raise awareness about climate change and support SJSU’s environmental outreach program during the California Climate Ride, May 17-21, 2015. The Green Ninja Team—a diverse group of SJSU students, alumni, faculty and staff members—biked 320 miles in five days from Eureka to San Francisco and supported environmental nonprofit organizations like the Green Ninja project. 

San José

A team of Spartans pedals hundreds of miles along the California coast to raise awareness about climate change and support SJSU’s environmental outreach program during the California Climate Ride, May 17-21, 2015. The Green Ninja Team—a diverse group of SJSU students, alumni, faculty and staff members—biked 320 miles in five days from Eureka to San Francisco and supported environmental nonprofit organizations like the Green Ninja project.

Meteorology Professor Alison Bridger demonstrates her department's “map wall” weather monitors and interacts with her students in the classroom, February 29, 2016. Photo: Neal Waters  

Meteorology Professor Alison Bridger demonstrates her department's “map wall” weather monitors and interacts with her students in the classroom, Februar​y 29, 2016.

Photo: Neal Waters

Meteorology Professor Alison Bridger demonstrates her department's “map wall” weather monitors and interacts with her students in the classroom, February 29, 2016. Photo: Neal Waters  
Cal Poly San Luis Obispo chemistry professor Emily Bockmon, Ph.D., (right) and student Sara Gray (left) test water samples as part of their study of ocean acidification, January 24, 2020. By measuring the pH of the water around the Cal Poly Pier in Avila Beach and the estuary in Morro Bay, Dr. Bockmon and her team hope to better understand the long-term effects of ocean acidification on marine ecosystems. 

San L​uis Obispo

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo chemistry professor Emily Bockmon, Ph.D., (right) and student Sara Gray test water samples as part of their study of ocean acidification, January 24, 2020. By measuring the pH of the water around the Cal Poly Pier in Avila Beach and the estuary in Morro Bay, Dr. Bockmon and her team hope to better understand the long-term effects of ocean acidification on marine ecosystems.

Photo: Joe Johnston

At Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s Swanton Pacific Ranch, agricultural management specialist Aaron Lee conducts research on reducing greenhouse gasses through soil-based carbon sequestration, December 21, 2020. Last year, portions of the ranch were destroyed when a massive wildfire swept through Santa Cruz County—just the type of disaster that better climate science might help mitigate in the future.  

At Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s Swanton Pacific Ranch, agricultural management specialist Aaron Lee conducts research on reducing greenhouse gasses through soil-based carbon sequestra​tion, December 21, 2020. Last year, portions of the ranch were destroyed when a massive wildfire swept through Santa Cruz County—just the type of disaster that better climate science might help mitigate in the future.

Photo: Joe Johnston

At Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s Swanton Pacific Ranch, agricultural management specialist Aaron Lee conducts research on reducing greenhouse gasses through soil-based carbon sequestration, December 21, 2020. Last year, portions of the ranch were destroyed when a massive wildfire swept through Santa Cruz County—just the type of disaster that better climate science might help mitigate in the future.  
At SSU’s Center for Environmental Inquiry's Galbreath Wildlands Preserve, students inspect the low-cost, intelligent sensor they designed to aid in the trapping of invasive feral pigs without harming other species. The center mobilizes faculty, students and the community to solve complex environmental challenges, turning education into action. 

Sonoma

At Sonoma State​’s Center for Environmental Inquiry's Galbreath Wildlands Preserve, students inspect the low-cost, intelligent sensor they designed to aid in the trapping of invasive feral pigs without harming other species. The center mobilizes faculty, students and the community to solve complex environmental challenges, turning education into action. (Photo predates COVID-19.)

SHARE YOUR EARTH MONTH PHOTO

Do you have a great Earth Month photo? Email a JPG or TIFF to precord@calstate.edu​ and it wi​ll be submitted to CSU Dominguez Hills' Digital Collection Database for archiving.​