The first step to global learning is global awareness

The first aspect of global learning is that of global awareness. It is the step you must take in order to be fully globally educated and fully globally aware. It is the foundation of all global learning, as one must be aware of something in order to act upon it. 

Global awareness is being able to understand these relationships and analyze how they affect our planet. For example, in this class, we talked a lot about global climate change, the impact that humans had on this detrimental process, and how to calculate it. On several of my blogs, I talked about how the factory farm industry has a massive negative impact on our environment, and I used math to support my answer.

I used what we learned in the breakfast foods project, as well as my own research, to discover what kind of impact eating meat and dairy has on the health of our Earth. In one of my blogs, I stated that “Right now, it is estimated that 30% of the planet’s landmass is set aside for  factory farms, a.k.a. for meat, dairy, and egg production.” I went on to talk about that “Livestock production causes an even larger contribution to climate change than the transportation sector worldwide.” It turn out that it is very simple to use math to make sense of concepts like these, and that is all part about being globally aware in order to globally learn.  

My sustainability act

Eating a plant-based diet is not only great for your health and the animals, but it is also crucial in combatting climate change and helping save water. It’s definitely hard to make the switch 100%, but doing simple things like “meatless Mondays” are a great start and will make a bigger difference than one might think.

How to workout sustainably!

For my video, I decided to interview my friend Courtney to talk about her sustainability efforts on campus.  Courtney, an avid runner, described an easy task she does to save energy.  She runs outside instead of running on the treadmill.  This saves electricity, while at the same time gives her the ability to appreciate the beauty of the Union College campus! As mentioned in the video, a normal treadmill uses about 2HP (horsepower), with the average person using it for approximately 30 minutes a day, this means they are using 0.75 kilowatts per hour everyday.  To save energy, run outside!

Fighting Water Waste

Give an example of water waste (in U.S. or other countries). Make suggestions for reducing water waste and quantify the amount of water that could be saved.


According to an article in The Washington Post, Americans wasted 1 trillion gallons of water in the year 2015. But how much really is 1 trillion gallons? Our water waste accounts for 9% of the water needed to solve the California drought problem, which has a deficit of 11 trillion gallons of water. It is also equal to 40 million swimming pools, 24 billion baths, or Lake Okeechobee in Florida.


The EPA states that a lot of the water we waste is due to leaks. The average household wastes nearly 10,000 gallons of water per year due to leaks. Ten percent of households waste more than 90 gallons of water per day due to leaks. Not only does this waste American’s water, leaks also waste American’s money. Fixing household leaks is both cost effective and an effective way of reducing waste.


Besides household leaks, there are a number of other ways to reduce our water waste. Making small changes to our lifestyles is one way to effectively reduce water waste. Individuals can try and take shorter showers, or even turning off their water after wetting their toothbrushes. In addition, I believe more water saving toilets should be installed in public bathrooms, as well as in households, in order to reduce waste. The toilets in our Reamer Campus Center are designed with two different flush settings and help reduce the amount of water used when going to the bathroom. I think that if more of these toilets were installed on campus in places like dorms and Minervas, the Union College community could effectively reduce our water waste.

Welcome to Mathematics of Sustainability

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