Campus environmentalists await new SGA cabinet

After its 30th annual Green Week, this student group is looking forward to a strong partnership ahead.


Courtesy of the UA Environmental Council

Isabel Hope | @isabamahope, Contributing Writer

The University of Alabama’s Environmental Council partnered with the Student Government Association (SGA) to hold the 30th annual Green Week. The week of environmental action kicked off on Monday, March 29 with a documentary screening and concluded with a recycling drive on Friday. 

Natalie Miller, president of UA Environmental Council, said she was happy with Green Week’s turnout. The fundraiser at Red Shed was a success, according to Miller, and brought in $1,800 for the organization to support future environmental action events.

Leilani Johnson, former director of environmental affairs for the SGA, said her favorite event was watching the documentary “Discovering Alabama” and listening to speaker Doug Phillips who currently serves as the coordinator for environmental information and education at the Alabama Museum of Natural History. 

Johnson said Friday’s recycling drive proved to be challenging. The event faced smaller turnout than previous years and rainfall throughout the day. Miller said it was hard to encourage participation. Each of the six events had around 15 people in attendance. 

The Environmental Council and the SGA also gave out merchandise throughout the week, including buttons, pop sockets, reusable bags, phone wallets and plastic cups. While the plastic cups could appear to contradict their mission, Johnson said she thinks it has a positive effect. 

“Those cups have been given out every single year,” she said. “They are reusable cups that people can wash and use again as opposed to something like styrofoam cups that can’t be reused.”

As for future environmental action on campus, Johnson said things are in a waiting period. Former SGA President Demarcus Joiner’s administration was dissolved on Tuesday, April 6. Newly inaugurated President Jillian Fields will present her new cabinet, including the next environmental affairs officers, for approval by the Senate. 

“My cabinet just finished our term and we are looking forward to working with the next environmental affairs cabinet,” she said. “We are excited to see what they do and how we can continue to partner with the Environmental Council for environmental action on campus.”