Earth Day delivers eco-friendly education

GREEN DAY IN THE QUAD (Joseph Espiritu)

Keith Cousins

Saddleback College Associated Student Government hosted Earth Day festivities on April 22. The event brought many earth-friendly businesses and nonprofit organizations to the quad, where students learned first-hand how these companies help the environment.

One of these companies, the Costa Rica Natural Paper Company, has been making tree-free papers with no chemicals or additives since 1995. They produce a full line of natural tree-free paper, journals, gift stationery and other office products using banana, coffee, lemon, mango and tobacco.

“The bananas and other fibers are only 10 percent of what we use,” Greg Johansing, a company employee, said. “The other 90 percent we get from old library books and tax paperwork that is discarded, then we pulp it together in Costa Rica.”

Another company that promotes respect for the earth is Soylar Candles, owned by Irene Guoz. Guoz started her business in 2007 after realizing that no other company was making eco-friendly candle products.

“I couldn’t find those things anywhere so I started doing it myself,” Guoz said. “All the jars we use are recycled. We don’t use any fossil fuels in our candles and the wax is 100% natural soy.”

Guoz even uses solar energy to power the business from her home, which has solar panels in its roof. She also sells kits so that once the candles burn out, customers can reuse the wax and make candles of their own.

Through these eco-friendly businesses, Earth Day promoted education for all those who attended. ASG member Sara Schack, 20, city and regional planning, helped plan the event and was thrilled with the outcome.

“It went a lot better than expected,” Schack said. “It’s green, informative and it engaged the students because it was aimed at them.”

During the day, the band Beyond Conception performed in the quad while students explored the booths and ate complimentary food. Guitarist Blake Kennedy discussed why his band agreed to play for Earth Day.

“We love the Earth. We are a very planet-friendly band,” Kennedy said. “I really like plants and animals and all that [expletive], and we really like to play in front of as many people as possible.”

Students gained a great deal from the event. Teal Johnson, 19, business administration said, “overall, it was a very beneficial day for campus.”

Throughout the day, students recycled ink cartridges, cell phones and eyeglasses. They were able to gain valuable knowledge of what companies are doing to promote and preserve the environment.

ECO-FRIENDLY PRODUCTS (Joseph Espiritu)

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