Coaches: Katie Steen
Monday, April 11th
9:00 AM

Boon and Bane: The Paradox of Neolithic Caprine Domestication in the Southern Levant

Madeline Duppenthaler

Reid G02

9:00 AM - 9:15 AM

My presentation examines how domestication of sheep and goats was both beneficial and disastrous for many Pre-Pottery Neolithic B humans in the southern Levant. While domestication caused an increase in population and complexity of some settlements in the southern Levant, overgrazing, environmental degradation and population increasingly strained the economy of such settlements. In the 7th millennium this development culminated in the dissolution of major settlements. While several factors led to this dissolution, I argue that goats and sheep were a major factor. In the end, while agriculture and animal domestication led to initial improvement in living conditions, ultimately and ironically they were responsible for the disastrous downfall of these settlements.

9:15 AM

Food Waste Hierarchy of Scandinavia

Margo Heffron

Reid G02

9:15 AM - 9:30 AM

In a perfect world, waste would not exist; waste is just a symptom of mismanaged resources. On a global scale,almost a third of the world’s food supply is wasted. We know food waste should go toward extinguishing hunger, but how do we prevent and manage our food waste effectively? Through the Danish Institute of Study Abroad course, “Sustainability in Northern Europe,” I explore this question by analyzing Food Waste Systems in Malmö, Sweden and Copenhagen, Denmark. Through comparative analysis, I study how both cities manage food waste and in which ways they promote prevention. I share that even though many cost-effective methods exist to prevent food waste, these two Scandinavian cities rely on waste to produce energy and electricity, a systematic flaw that prevents them from moving up the waste hierarchy. I will analyze food waste issues of the Pacific Northwest as well.

9:45 AM

Dam Removal: the Politics Behind the Symbol

Emily Williams

Reid G02

9:45 AM - 10:00 AM

Throughout U.S. history dams have been considered symbols of progress and development. Since the rise of the environmental movement in the 1960s, dams are also considered symbols of environmental degradation. Attitudes towards environmentally driven dam removal vary based on differing interpretations of, and attachments to, the symbolism of dams. Dams removal functions as a powerful political symbol for both the environmental movement and those opposed to environmental frameworks; the debate stems from tensions between varying conceptions and understandings of nature. My presentation examines these disparate conceptions of nature through an analysis of activist rhetoric on both sides of dam removal debates in the Pacific Northwest.

Tuesday, April 12th
9:30 AM

Exotic Ungulates and Cushion Plants: A Story of the Mountain Goat in Southeastern Utah

Cameron Hancock, Whitman College


9:30 AM - 9:45 AM

The La Sal mountains of southeastern Utah are sky islands harboring alpine plants that exist nowhere else in the state and one endemic species, the La Sal daisy (Erigeron mancus). In September of 2013, 20 exotic mountain goats were introduced to the mountains for hunting and viewing purposes by the Utah Division of Wildlife, a state agency. The following year, 15 more goats were released despite a strong backlash from the community and environmentalists. These goats expanded their distribution to include the Manti-La Sal National Forest, a parcel of federal land that encompasses the mountain range. The story of the mountain goat introduction is rife with controversy as hunting enthusiasts and plant protectors butt heads. I will examine this story at many levels, from the wind-blown wildflowers atop the 11,000 foot peaks to the tumultuous town hall meetings where the mountain goat becomes a symbol for so much more.