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Brenau lectures focus on sustainability
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‘Sense and Sustainability’ lectures
When: Monthly beginning 5-6 p.m. Tuesday
Where: Student auditorium, second floor of the Tea Room building, Brenau University, Academy Street
How much: Free
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While the name “Sense and Sustainability” may sound like a familiar book title, don’t confuse it with the famous Jane Austen novel.

The name is given to the upcoming monthly public lecture series Brenau University is sponsoring. The first lecture is scheduled for 5-6 p.m. Tuesday in the Brenau student auditorium SUB in Gainesville. The lectures are free, open to the public and will cover a new topic on sustainability each month.

Dr. Rudi Kiefer, professor of science and director of sustainability at Brenau, says sustainability is about the issues that deserve attention for the sake of improving the quality of human life, and the lectures will incorporate these elements.

“It’s about being aware of the constant changes around us — cultures, lifestyles, governments, even the climate — and trying to find ways of making this the best of all possible worlds,” said Kiefer, whose Sunday column in The Times “Earth Sense” focuses on such topics.

Lecture speakers will include Brenau faculty members, selected students and guests with an expertise in regional and global sustainability. Kiefer will moderate the monthly lectures and will also be this month’s speaker.

“The Sense and Sustainability series aims to educate about mechanisms that, for practical purposes, have always operated on this planet,” Kiefer said. “It examines the action of humans and tries to determine whether they are on a path that will keep lives and resources safe, or sustainable, or need revision because they are a long-term threat to the population.”

Kiefer’s first lecture will be addressing both globally and regionally-focused issues, such as the Chernobyl and Love Canal disasters, development and water supply, and how tornadoes, floods, earthquakes and hurricanes have affected the area.

A time for questions will wrap up the lectures.

Speakers also plan on addressing a variety of other sustainability topics throughout the series.

According to Kiefer, the lecture topics will “fit just about anybody’s interest.”

“Residents of North Georgia, and specifically Hall County, stand out as people who are not only aware of the beauty and variety of our region, but also interested in preserving it for future generations,” Kiefer said.

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