Well it is that time of year again; the air is humid, the sky is blue, the sun is shinning, and students huddle away in their rooms to study or write papers as the semester draws to a close. While much progress has been made in this Sustainability House, there is still much to do. Our final project proposals have just gotten approval and now we start the major changes and monitoring we hope will set the path for the future of this house. The new members have been announced for next year and as three of the house members are moving on and out the new faces will be taking over some of the projects left by those who came before. Personally I am excited to get started on my project and have even begun to enlist the assistance of local businesses. The people who live in the area and specialize in its plants are the best consultants for the project. Speaking of local people, our across the street neighbor proudly displays her beautiful garden and you cannot help but notice her solar panels. While we would like to have solar panels ourselves they are expensive. This has driven the house members to engage in a hunt, along with the schools assistance, for grants that we can apply for to begin to allocate funds for the changes the house needs. While there are free services that can come and tell us the changes that need to be made to be an environmental completely sustainable house, knowing what needs to be done is only the first part. The only real possibility for change comes from having the ability to enact it and for us that means we need money. As we begin our individual projects it is staggering how much funding is needed just to change simple things. The cost of plants is quite high and its a gamble as to whether they will even grow. We want to paint the house to demonstrate how energy flows inside, but we have to use environmentally friendly paints and cover the entire inside which means hundreds of dollars of funds needed. While the school does have programs to support the house and its pursuit, when you actually think about it not much can be done without the funding. Even with the funding we can only change so much, to be fully environmentally conscious requires the money to be able to afford that “luxury”. Think about it.