Issue 5

Published in May 2010

Editor's Introduction

Environmental Issue

The myriad ways in which environmental conservation, stewardship, and sustainability find expression on MU’s campus would probably surprise most people. Global warming, electric cars, renewable energy——these may be controversial matters in our society, but as we watch the slow and uncertain rise of so-new technologies, and follow the political calculations surrounding policy changes shift with the price of oil, on the local level many are taking decisive action.

Construction at the intersection of Smiley and Rangeline in Columbia, MO

Pollution, Soil, and Columbia Missouri

Marie Kersey

Columbia Missouri is getting bigger in every aspect. From parking lots to mega apartment complexes Columbia is expanding its borders constantly. Because of this rapid growth there are many effects of the construction that takes place daily in multiple regions of this city.

Treasure Found in a Trash Heap: Composting at Mizzou

Caroline Tanner

A pile of apple cores, melon seeds, half eaten bread, corn kernels, and broccoli wait on a curb in black trash bags. But this food waste has a different destination than similar trash bags. Instead of being transported to the landfill with all the other dining hall garbage that comes from the University of Missouri in Columbia, Missouri, these food scraps will be picked up and taken downtown to the corner of St. Joseph and Ash Street to be composted and then returned to the soil.

Central Air - Outdoors

HVAC Optimization Study

Daniel E. Sewell and Tyler J. McKee

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) can be a very costly effort when applied in industry. So was thought to be the case at the DRS Technologies facility in West Plains, Missouri. Therefore, the Pollution Prevention Program (P2) in cooperation with the DRS Technology internship program —the Cornwell Student Initiative (CSI)— decided to initiate a study focusing on the optimization of the plant’s HVAC systems. The systems were thought to have become misapplied and inefficient resulting in additional energy consumption and excess electric and maintenance costs.

Soils: To be or not to be… on campus

John Gardner

One-hundred thousand tons of soil per square mile per year: that is the amount of soil lost due to erosion originating from construction sites in the U.S. This statistic is from 1967 before regulations were established to address construction site erosion; however, there are still significant losses from construction sites everyday. Soil erosion has various detrimental impacts that are both environmental and economic and occur on and off-site. The United States Department of Agriculture called soil erosion the most damaging factor to soil and environmental quality in an urban area, and it is an issue that is often overlooked by developers and loosely enforced by regulatory authorities.

MU Power Plant

Energy From Unlikely Sources: MU Power Plant’s Road to Sustainability

Laura Gosen

The University of Missouri Power Plant has been the source of steam and electricity for the University of Missouri campus for over 85 years. Established in 1923, the plant began with only four coal burning boilers and two steam turbines. The plant now has six boilers, four steam turbine generators, two gas turbine generators, and five deep wells.

Green Building

Andrew Messenger

“Thinking Green” is the new buzzword of the twenty-first century. There are the green IBM commercials that demonstrate a substantial amount of money saved if a business, “goes green;” the Mac commercial with the new energy saving computer that runs on less energy then a quarter of a light bulb; the car commercials competing for the most fuel efficiency. It seems that every individual or business in the twenty-first century is concerned with the environment and what we are putting into it.

Figure 1: Union Carbide Plant

Was the Need to Produce Pesticides Higher Than Need To Protect Civilians?

Cindy Cartagena

Your blood turns cold. Your eyes become blind. Panic hits and all of a sudden air won’t enter your lungs quite as easily. In the dead of the night of December 3rd, a noise resembling the pain of thousands of people was heard throughout Bhopal. People awoke to find themselves trapped in what seemed to be a gas chamber. Outside, people ran desperately trying to find relief to their pain. But, distressed occupants of Bhopal passed their wakeful nights under the most dreadful terrors imaginable. A release of deadly MIC, from a pesticide plant nearby, ruined the health of many people, and death ensued.

Memorial Union Ground Breaking

The Price Paid for Building Anew

Aubrey Fine

Currently, the University of Missouri-Columbia has seven construction projects being worked on throughout campus according to the campus facilities department. With the increasingly important goal of providing a top-notch campus to attract students worldwide, construction has seemed to be the one constant over the past decade.