Post's 1st Earth Day Expo eyes future
April 12, 2012
FORT RUCKER, Ala. (April 12, 2012) -- Turn off the lights for a brighter future.
Promoting sustainability on Fort Rucker and the surrounding communities is the message that the installation wants to get across with its first Earth Day Expo April 18, said Darrell Hager, environmental protection specialist for the Directorate of Public Works.
The point of the expo is to increase awareness on the installation and surrounding communities of Earth Day and what it stands for, which is focusing on environmental issues and sustainability, Hager said.
"For several years we've been doing demonstrations and Earth Day presentations for the local elementary schools and we decided that this year we wanted to broaden it and make it more visible to the entire community [and installation]," he said.
"It's important that Fort Rucker recognizes Earth Day because it demonstrates our commitment to sustain our installation for a secure future," added Cynthia Ranchino, leads plans specialist for the plans, analysis and integration office.
The expo will be April 18 at the Festival Fields from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will feature exhibits from different companies that will be displaying Earth-friendly ideas and products to educate people and teach them what they can do at their workplace or at home to help out the environment, said Hager.
"These exhibitors will provide information and demonstrations of sustainable solutions for both work and home," said Ranchino.
Some of the exhibitors include: United Research Services corporation, which will be doing demonstrations of rain barrels and how they help; Momar, which is a company that produces environmentally-friendly cleaning products that people can use in their homes or at work; and Petra Solar, which will have solar panels on display to educate people on the power or solar energy, said Hager.
Col. James A. Muskopf, Fort Rucker garrison commander, and Command Sgt. Maj. Dwaine E. Walters, garrison command sergeant major, will be at the expo to test drive the Tesla, which is an all-electric powered car that will be showcased at the event, said Ranchino.
"It's important for people to learn about sustainability because we want to ensure that Fort Rucker is able to support the mission, community and environment -- not just today, but well into the future," said the lead plans specialist. "If we all consider how we can reduce, reuse, repurpose or recycle our resources, it will help the installation reach its goals to reduce energy and water consumption, air emissions and the amount of waste going to landfills."
Sustainability is the managing of resources whether it's in the workforce, infrastructure, funds, information, natural resources, energy and systems, said Ranchino, adding that the expo will provide a platform for people to learn about sustainability and how it is should be integrated in daily life at home and work for the installation and the communities.
"I hope that people will become motivated to incorporate sustainability into their daily lives," she said. "Small and simple changes such as turning off the water while brushing your teeth, turning off the TV and lights when you leave the room, walking or biking instead of driving, recycling or repurposing as much as possible -- these can all add up to big changes."
The expo will also have free T-shirts to be given away, food available to purchase, raffles and door prizes that are to be donated from some of the vendors, according to Melissa Lowlavar, chief of the environmental management branch for DPW.
"It's a good event for people to come to celebrate Earth Day … and get awareness of what's available to them," she said. "It's the wealth of knowledge that we want people to take away with them when they come, but there will also be some free stuff."