Sustainability Council takes action to combat climate change
The Sustainability Council’s mission is to engage students with climate-related work and raise awareness of environmental issues. According to Co-President Dylan Linton (’23), SusCo is split into four committees this year: Service and Action, Community Involvement, Improving School Practices and Outreach. Linton said each committee has individual focuses, although there is often overlap.
Anderson Lugert (’25), a member of the Improving School Practices committee, said there are multiple committees within the council that help facilitate different types of work.
“We have committees that work on our outreach,” Lugert said. “Then we’ve got some within the community, they often work with the lower school to create bake sales to raise money for charities that help the environment. And then we have mine, which obviously works on the actual practices at ASL.”
Lugert said his committee has been in communication with Director of Operations Jim Heynderickx and Facilities Manager Dean Evans to create a dashboard monitoring how much energy the school consumes through the use of lights and other facilities.
“They’ve done a lot of work over the past few years to switch all the lights in the school to LED,” Lugert said. “Now, we’re working with them to get the dashboard out to the school so everyone can access it, as well as Earth Week where we are creating an initiative to turn the lights off and projectors off.”
Sofia Salloum (’26), a member of the Outreach committee, said the council has many plans for future events, especially during Earth Week, which is one of the council’s most visible events during the school year.
“Right now we’re working on an Earth Week celebration within all parts of SusCo,” Salloum said. “We’re also planning a gardening project with potatoes, herbs and other parts for the garden which should be really exciting.”
Further, Bea Borg (’25), a member of the Community Involvement team, said her work entails correspondence to host events, such as an after-school program in the Lower School that members volunteer in and organizing movie showings.
“Facilitating logistics often means a lot of emailing, but it’s really nice to see it all come to fruition,” Borg said.
Linton said one of the Council’s proudest achievements was the Sustainable Fashion show they hosted in the fall.
“Another big project that we’ve worked on recently is the Sustainable Fashion Show that we conducted, and that was a whole council effort,” Linton said. “We’ve been planning it since last year, and that was really exciting. I think we had an audience of around 100 people, so it was a big turnout, and we were really happy with that.”
Linton said along with the passion for sustainability and solving the climate crisis, there can be low morale within the council at times. To alleviate the stress of this global issue, the council has introduced a segment for positive news into their weekly meetings.
“One thing that we’ve been doing recently is at the beginning of each meeting, we have a thing that we do called environmental news where we select someone to present, like, a recent development or news piece about climate activism,” Linton said. “While this is a massive issue that is going to require like multilateral commitment, these small changes have made us a lot more hopeful.”
Ultimately, Salloum said the Sustainability Council is an integral part of the community, and she highly encourages others to become more involved.
“SusCo is really great, I think if you want to be more involved you should come to some meetings,” Salloum said. “Even if you aren’t involved right now, you can still come shadow, then if you want to become more involved, you can email members with ideas you have and just help out with our efforts in the community.”