environment

On the east side of the Fermilab grounds, a few large, stately honey locust trees grow directly over the bike path, where they dump most of their pendulous, spiral bean pods in the fall and winter. Photo: szántó

If you live in the Chicago suburbs and have ever taken a walk on the Fermilab hike-and-bike trail along Batavia Road, you’ve probably noticed large trees with long, slender bean pods, which — even after they fall to the ground — are ignored by wildlife. Not that long ago, mammoths, mastodons and giant ground sloths roamed the Fermilab grounds and feasted on these bean pods, along with the fruit of two additional species that still can be found growing on site.

This Wednesday, April 22, we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. Although we are unable to celebrate together right now, there are many ways that we can all celebrate Earth Day from our homes. Read on to learn how.

Lithium is in the news. The 2019 Nobel Prize for chemistry was awarded to three scientists for transforming our lives and helping to save our climate. Our three Nobel laureates invented ways of making batteries using lithium, with metal and later with compounds.

Robert Knapp of Evergreen State College will give a colloquium titled “The Greening of Buildings.” The building sector is a key locus for promoting sustainability since it accounts for more than 40% of energy use in the U.S. and a similar proportion in greenhouse gas emissions. The colloquium will outline technical and organizational moves needed for progress, address technical and social prospects and limits for sustainable energy as it pertains to buildings, and provide specific inventions that would make a difference.

Lend a hand care for our land! Join us for our Volunteer Third-Thursday lunch time clean up May 16 from 11:45-1:15. Transportation to clean up sites from WH Ground Floor at 11:45 sharp. All cleaning gear will be provided. A luncheon and refreshments served afterwards to all volunteers. Please RSVP for lunch! Call x 3303 for questions or email olah@fnal.gov.

Lend a hand care for our land!  Join us for our Volunteer Third-Thursday lunch time clean up May 16 from 11:45-1:15. Transportation to clean up sites from WH Ground Floor at 11:45 sharp. All cleaning gear will be provided. A luncheon and refreshments served afterwards to all volunteers. Please RSVP for lunch! Call x 3303 for questions or email olah@fnal.gov.  

The Willowbrook Wildlife Center shows a great plains rat snake to Fermilab families. Photo: Reidar Hahn

Fermilab’s Earth Day Fair was a big success. Thanks to the day’s earlier big event, DASTOW, we had some welcome extra company: kids! Employees and their children got to visit our booths, check out the electric vehicles on display in the Wilson Hall driveway, and say hello to some reptilian wildlife.