Friday, March 18, 2011

Interview: Candace Le Roy, SFU Sustainability Coordinator

On March 14th a few members from our campaign team met with Candace Le Roy, SFU’s sustainability coordinator, to interview her about making SFU an e-waste free zone. The University is and has been a leader in core energy reduction and conservation for many years. Candace’s position focuses on what SFU is doing to continually maintain their ecological footprint, she says, “we want to be able to walk the talk”.

Currently, SFU does not have any policy put into place clearly stating that it is a waste free zone. However, she does say that SFU feels strongly about keeping waste in Canada and doing everything in their power to not send any electronic waste overseas. Candace was unsure as to where exactly the university’s electronic waste was being sent at this time, but suggested we speak to Lawrence Real, who is in charge of SFU’s custodial services. She felt that he would be able to help our campaign work out certain details such as, how our e-waste drop-box program would be run, and who could help to run it.

In response to our question, “what do you think of our campaigns idea to implement a free, and permanent drop-off location on campus for e-waste?” Candace stated that she felt having an e-waste drop-box at the school was a resourceful idea, one that wouldn’t be too difficult to implement. She also said that SFU students seemed keen about the topic of waste, as 99% of the e-mails that go through her department are usually waste related. It is a very prevalent topic and she felt as long as we were passionate about putting an end to SFU’s e-waste, our schools administration should respond positively. The integrative work between students and the administration is important and it is what pushes our institution to cross boundaries.

Our team was curious to know what the next steps were in creating our policy. She suggested, to make sure we have done our research and figured out any constraints that might be standing in our way. From there we can then move forward or around the issues in order to succeed in reaching our goals. It mainly comes down to, she says, “can the university afford it?”

Candace told our group members that our campaign and interview with her had come at a good time. In April, SFU is having a zero waste committee meeting, where a discussion will take place based on creating a waste policy for the university. Topics of zero waste initiatives, reduction of disposals, and an implementation of the plans to conquer this issue will be discussed.

We hope to attend this meeting in order to have our student voices heard and possibly further the process of our campaign and policy.

We thank Candace for her time and helpful insight!


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