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CCEL examines effects of idling

Students at Weber State University teamed up with the Center for Community for Engaged Learning to produce two educational skits entitled “Hey, Utah, Stop Idling” and “Dead on Red” yesterday in the Wildcat Theater as part of the On Air series.

Statistics show that the weather in Utah is unhealthy. While some students may not notice, others have tried to educate the public about what part they take in helping the issue.

Following this was the presentation of a documentary about one man’s journey to help improve his New York neighborhood from a smog-riddled city to one more breathable and livable, entitled “Idle Threat.” The key message behind the documentary is that no matter how long people idle, they’re still polluting the the air.

WSU’s idling policy allows for two minutes of idling, but some people believe even that is too long.

“The weather in Utah is awful and sad,” said Madonne Miner, dean of the Telitha E. Lindquist College of Arts & Humanities. “In the short eight years I’ve been here, it’s only been getting worse . . . More than anything, I really wish I could inform people more about the idling policy here at Weber.”

WSU and the community have made efforts to raise awareness of the poor air quality, but they have rarely received media coverage, meaning their message is only spreading by word of mouth.

“We need more coverage of these events and the hot topic at hand,” said Alice Mulder, assistant professor of geography. “People need to be aware that the air quality along the Wasatch Front is horrible!”

Mulder said she was looking for a stronger execution of the law. “I’d also like to see more enforcement of the idling policy not only at Weber State, but all over Weber County as well.”

WSU offers yearlong UTA bus passes for students for only $20. According to the WSU Sustainability Department, if each student and faculty member at WSU used public transportation twice a week, the university would reduce CO2 emissions on campus by about 40 percent.

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