Monthly Archives: March 2008

Lessons of Earth Hour

Well, earth hour has come and past. We have turned on the laptop, but still have our candles glowing. Here’s the video about earth hour for those of you who may not be aware.

I have to say that this was a pretty fun experience. Here are the things that I learned from participating.
1) It nice to turn off everything and live in a quiet glowing home.
2) It really isn’t so hard to save a bit on the electric bill by turning things off. We could and should do this more often. I am pretty conscientious about keeping lights off, but I have to say that it is rare that we are in our house at night without at least one light on.
3) The last things I turned off for the night was my laptop and then the music on my iPod. I think that this says something about me, but I am trying to figure out what.
4) My 10 month old daughter was sort of freaked out by the darkness and quiet. I think that this says something about our lifestyle.
5) I texted some of my friends about earth hour and many of them didn’t know about it at all.I would like to say that it was great that Moraine Valley participated in this event. I know that the campus is fairly empty on Saturday nights, but Moraine played a part in promoting and spreading the word about this.

Chicago’s Ailing Forest Preserves

Our college is very fortunate to be on the edge of the Cook County Forest preserves. This provides our students with a local, “natural” habitat to study, and it gives us some amazing views. I love the preserves in the fall and right after snow storms.

Since we benefit from these preserves, I thought that this program from Chicago Public Radio’s 848 program was appropriate for us. Chicago’s Ailing Forest Preserves describes a bit of history of the preserves, but it also discusses the political battle that is going on about who should control this land.  Two issues are really at the heart of this debate.  The first issue is how the preserves should be “restored.”  What species should be removed and on what scale should it happen?  The second issue is the impact to the habitat that political push and pull has.  For instance, what happens when the county robs the forest preserve budget or when the Forest Preserve Board sells land to other municipalities?

This is a debate that should interest all of us that live and work close to the Cook County Forest Preserves.