Ralph Critelli

Ralph Critelli.

Ralph Critelli, UB adjunct instructor of environmental studies

What kinds of sustainability related research/projects do you pursue at UB?

My main focus, mostly through guest lecturing and the information shared in SSC118 Introduction to Environmental Issues, is to increase awareness and incite my students to take action.  My students are my "personal project." Together, we comprise the "research" being done to develop sustainable systems on campus and in the community.  Being an adjunct is limiting as to my personal involvement with UB's sustainability projects. My projects mostly involve the sustainability programs that have been initiated at Kenmore East High School in the Town of Tonawanda, one of which is our contribution & involvement with Terracycle.

How are students involved in your sustainability work? 

They have been involved in a myriad of internship programs-- LTLOL (Let Them Laugh Out Loud) a Clarence "grass roots" program, Buffalo River Keepers, The Smithsonian Society, Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge, UB Garden, Project Grow (Garden Relax Or Work), Solar Decathlon. The latest project: several of my students initiated UBReUse; an awesome on campus program that focuses on collecting what would be garbage and finding re-purpose for it-- a waste not, want not concept- see the link! 


What are you doing to help UB become more sustainable? 

As stated, increasing awareness, inciting and motivating people to take action.

What is the one thing you would like people to know that you do in your personal life to further sustainability? 

Well... I can be annoying... and maybe not the life of the party, because I do not pass up on a single opportunity to discuss the dire situation that we are faced with.  Alternative fuel sources, alternative diet, the "little" things that add up when we consider that 7 Billion people on the planet can be doing, and the power of the internet.  Bill McKibben states that the three things that can possibly see us through this mess is creating a more sustainable food system, energy system, and making full use of the power of the internet.

How could UB improve its sustainability efforts? 

By continuing to deliver the message that I do to my students: me telling thousands, which, in turn, will tell thousands more about the difference in the global impact that we can make. If we all work together, as Ghandi once stated, "May YOU (all of us) be the change we wish to see in the world."