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Florissant Valley Alumnus Walks the Walk

Patrick Maloney is a 38 year old Florissant Valley alumnus. He is currently perusing a Master’s degree in Political Science from University of Missouri St. Louis. Born in Fairbanks in the interior of Alaska, Patrick grew up with a profound respect for nature. One major lesson he learned is “Respect nature because she can kill you.” Now a full time student and stay-at-home dad, he raises his children with the same focus on respect. He is very active in his daily life and every now and again takes his family camping.

Political Science teaches him that things will not improve unless people are more aware. This means creating a paradigm shift where social habits will change for the positive. He believes in a harmonic balance between earth and people. One of his goals is to teach people how to make the necessary changes for a green living.

Patrick feels some things are prematurely discarded. He practices sustainability by not creating unnecessary waste: he uses the same grocery bags at the market, prints double sided, and turns off the light switch when he exits a room. As a consumer, he gets full use out of all his items and is slow to purchase the latest new gadget that hits the market.

While some of these acts are relatively simple things to accomplish, he goes the extra step by enrolling in Ameren UE’s Pure Power Incentive. He explains how Ameren UE is generating a demand for renewable energy by allowing customers to donate to the Pure Power program. The donation is automatically deducted from his electric bill. His donation is used to purchase Renewable Energy Credits (RECs). These monetary investments support renewable energy development like wind farms generating fossil-free power into St. Louis’s regional power pool.

Patrick educates those around him about environmental issues. One issue close to his heart involves aerial wolf hunting. In Alaska, hunters can use a helicopter to hunt and kill packs of wolves. Patrick believes hunting this way is wasteful, inhumane and unsportsmanlike. He is disturbed by the support given to its practice by former Alaska Governor, Sarah Palin. Aerial ‘hunters’ do so for trophy, thus unnecessarily waste their kill. He believes this practice should be banned to allow for wolf population restoration.

He is also passionate about recycling. What qualifies as trash by some businesses is “treasure” for dumpster divers like him. On one dumpster dive, Patrick found a brand new unopened printer. He later donated it as a raffle item to STLCC at Florissant Valley.

Patrick plans to “walk the walk” for his children by building a house using recycled metal shipping containers. He hopes to cultivate a deeper understanding of how people and their everyday habits affect the world around them.