Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 51.63
Liaison Dwayne Doornbosch
Submission Date June 24, 2021

STARS v2.2

Langara College
AC-8: Campus as a Living Laboratory

Status Score Responsible Party
1.20 / 4.00 Kelly Sveinson
Chair
Applied Research Centre
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Public Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Public Engagement:

Langara's campus grounds include edible, apiary and pollinator gardens. These gardens are utilized as part of a continuing studies course on Sustainable Urban Beekeeping. The course is designed to teach best practices to beginners, reinvigorate experienced beekeepers and offer opportunities to take hive management and practices to higher levels. It is also ideal for those interested in learning more about pollination and pollinators. As a continuing studies course, it is open and available to students as well as members of the public, and offers a chance to engage the public on campus infrastructure and operations.

More information regarding the Sustainable Urban Beekeeping continuing studies course can be found here:
https://langara.ca/continuing-studies/programs-and-courses/programs/bee-keeping/


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Air & Climate?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Air & Climate:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Buildings?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Buildings:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Energy?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Energy:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Food & Dining?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Food & Dining:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Grounds?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Grounds:

1) Biochar project
Langara's biochar project, led by the Chemistry department and students, use the Colleges experimental biochar reactor to convert a variety of biomass wastes into biochar, a substance similar to charcoal. Biochar is a form of carbon that is removed from the atmosphere and therefore has climate change mitigation potential. Biochar has also been shown to have soil benefits, and so may be a valuable amendment for agriculture or forestry applications. As part of the Project, biochar is used on the Langara Community Garden to conduct growing trials to look for positive or negative effects on plants.

2) Feral Hops project
Langara College has a study on BC’s Feral Hops to provide scientific support to the BC craft beer industry and provide a potential use by BC hops growers and brewers. By running DNA samples through gene-sequencing machines the goal is to find DNA markers to distinguish the different varieties of hops. This project uses Langara College grounds to grow a variety of hop plants from the wild for analysis in order to improve the ability to correctly identify hop varieties. The goal of the project is to support local economic development of the BC craft brewing sector (a burgeoning industry in the province) as well as the hop growing industry, an economically important crop in BC. Therefore, the sustainability advancement stemming from this project is primarily focused on local economic development.

Sources:
- More information on the Biochar project can be found here:
https://www.langaravoice.ca/breaking-biochar-whats-real-chemistry-instructor-cooking/
https://langara.ca/departments/chemistry/biochar-project/effect-of-biochar-on-plants.html

Please note that while the above links for the biochar project reference work conducted in 2011, it remains an ongoing project.

- More information on the BC's Feral Hops project can be found here:
https://langara.ca/about-langara/applied-research/research-projects/craft-beer-industry-bc.html


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Purchasing?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Purchasing:
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IIs the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Transportation?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Transportation:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Waste?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Waste:

- Transparent Bin Project
The purpose of the Transparent Bin Project was to evaluate cross contamination rates between the 4 stream opaque collection bins by using transparent bins for two weeks and comparing cross contamination rates before and after these transparent bins were used. All garbage was weighed first then weighed again after removing cross contaminated trash. These transparent bins were located in a high foot traffic area. Students and staff were able to see what was thrown in each bin and to make the correct decision on where to discard their recyclables, organics or trash. The study showed that cross contaminations occur mainly between garbage, organics and coffee cups in the opaque bins. When the transparent bins were introduced, a large decrease in cross contamination occurred because of the increase of peoples perceptions of knowing where waste and recyclables were to be placed. Weights taken showed a decrease in cross contamination.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Water?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Water:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work:
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Website URL where information about the institution’s living laboratory program is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.