Constructing a Sustainable Community
This past weekend, my classmates and I from GEOG 126: Living in the Material World: The Political and Economic Geographies of Resource Development walked to the Sustainability Hub, right next to the Clark University Book Store. As part of a class studying the political economy and development of resources, resource sustainability is one of the essentials learning to live within the means of what the earth can provide for us without depleting its resources.
The Sustainability Hub, a branch of National Grid, aims to create a futuristic house with resources that are energy efficient and effective for a long period of time. This futuristic home, located on 912 Main Street, is a smart grid plot. An article in the Daily Finance defines the hub as “a 2,200 square-foot facility centrally located within the company’s smart grid pilot area in Worcester, Mass”. The space to build the Sustainability Hub was donated by Clark University. However, donations and collaborations from surrounding colleges and organizations have created a community engagement mentality.
The educational component of the Sustainability Hub is intended to “provide[s] participating customers with a new level of choice and control over their energy use through advanced technology, with the goal of empowering customers to save energy, potentially increasing electric service reliability and improving response to power outages” (Daily Finance). The Hub incorporates contributions from students, such as art pieces created by Claremont Academy students, in addition to providing internship opportunities for surrounding college students.
The Sustainability Hub has developed to be an educational center that promotes environmental efficiency and efficacy. Due to its close proximity to universities, it provides easy access for student to take the tools they learn about environmentalism and sustainability in the classroom and apply it in the real world by modeling sustainable and energy efficient house construction through top-notch technology found at the Sustainability Hub.