Today is our third day at the Gutianshan Nature Reserve. Although we haven’t been here for long, our schedule is tight, with many activities one after another. Normally we participate in fieldwork during the day, such as measuring the window sizes of the dendrometers, observing the conditions of the tree canopy, as well as gauging their light transmission. In the afternoon and after dinner, we participate in the learning sessions. In just two days, we have already completed special-topic learning sessions including “Forests in Focus” and “Our Planet under Pressure.” We have also been in contact with Alcoa’s headquarters in China to learn more about the many sustainability initiatives of Alcoa China. After leaving the hustle and bustle of the city and coming into this new world, every Fellow is committed to improving our environment as well as to thinking more about and exploring sustainable development.
The activities do more than simply impart knowledge; they inspire interactive thinking, as well. For instance, each Fellow led a discussion on an environmental issue related to Alcoa during today’s afternoon learning session. I was responsible for “Alcoa’s Goals in Sustainability,” and for this topic I downloaded the sustainability report from Alcoa’s official website, read it through carefully, summarized the content, and produced a slideshow for a better presentation. Combined with the contributions of the Earthwatch staff, the presentation was a success. Other members’ discussions were just as exciting. Everyone emerged having a better understanding of Alcoa’s concept of sustainability in relation to its products, resources, operations and communities. The interactions here have given us much inspiration and enlightenment.