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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The Battalion May 4, 2024

Aggies come together to promote sustainability

Members of Aggie Replant pick up trash at Aggie Park on Feb. 5, 2024. (Photo courtesy of Mayra Puga)

As Earth Day arrives in Aggieland, talks about environmental action are growing. From planting trees to creating an impactful sustainable lifestyle, Aggies continue to come together to address the pressing challenges facing our planet.

Earth Day, celebrated annually on April 22, serves as a reminder of the importance of protecting our planet. Across campus, organizations like Aggie Replant are constantly tackling issues such as deforestation, and recognizing the need for collective action to prevent damage to future generations. Biology junior Seona Helmi said she embodies this commitment, especially through her role as co-sponsorship executive for Aggie Replant.

“Our mission is to promote environmental awareness and plant trees around the Bryan-College Station area to give back to our planet,” Helmi said. “It connects A&M students who are passionate about the Earth with the members of the local community, fostering connections within the area focused on helping the Earth.” 

Student-led initiatives go beyond tree plantings. By embracing sustainable practices in their daily lives, Helmi said these initiatives contribute to a culture of environmental responsibility.

“I try to live as sustainably as I can with minimal water usage, recycling anything I can, reducing my plastic usage as much as possible, trying to not contribute to food waste and cleaning up trash if I see any in green spaces,” Helmi said. 

Management information systems junior Vijay Kapistalam said has concerns about unsustainable consumer practices, particularly in the fashion industry. Kapistalam is the tree team director for Aggie Replant. By advocating for ethical consumption, easing awareness about the environmental impacts of fast fashion is crucial, Kapistalam said.

“I think fast fashion needs to be boycotted,” Kapistalam said. “Brands like Shein and Zara are cheap and trendy, but they are not good for the planet. They rely heavily on synthetic materials, which contributes to the accumulation of waste in landfills, while also employing questionable producing practices. They try to leverage trends and this leads to mass production of clothing, which is then tossed in landfills as soon as the trend loses popularity.”

Although the effects of unsustainable practices continue to worsen, biomedical sciences junior Mayra Puga said she still finds solace and inspiration in nature’s beauty. 

“My favorite thing about nature has to be water, it’s the source of life for almost everything and overall just how intricate nature is,” Puga said, who also serves as co-sponsorship chair for Aggie Replant.

On Earth Day, Aggies plan to spend their day outside, enjoying what nature has to offer.

“I am definitely going to go outside,” Helmi said. “I have no set plans yet, but I just know I’ll be with my friends that love the Earth as much as I do and we appreciate her beauty and all she’s done for us.”

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