UC Berkeley junior Sylvia Targ, backed by the environmental campus community, launched their independent candidacy for the ASUC Senate on Tuesday evening.
Targ, who uses she/they pronouns and is studying geography and conservation and resource studies, hopes to institutionalize sustainability and increase accessibility and intersectionality in the environmental community. Targ has been involved with the Students of Color Environmental Collective since their freshman year and currently serves as District 7 Councilmember Rigel Robinson’s appointee to the city Parks and Waterfront Commission.
Targ said the environmentally backed senator will have a “critical” role next year, considering the campus’s goal of zero waste by 2020.
“We need someone in the senate floor to keep bringing this up and continuing to hold our university accountable for these big, lofty promises it makes to us,” Targ said.
In order to make environmental activism more accessible to students, Targ plans to create a website that lists all active campus organizations and a catalog of environmentally themed courses.
The integration of social and environmental issues is an overarching theme in Targ’s campaign. One cannot be an environmentalist without considering race, gender and ability, Targ said, adding that the only way to incorporate meaningful change is through intersectionality.
“Everyone has a stake in this game,” Targ said.
Targ has been endorsed by ASUC Senator Anna Whitney and Robinson, a former ASUC senator — both of whom were endorsed by the environmental community when they campaigned — as well as ASUC Senator Zach Carter.
“They are one of the most hardworking people I’ve ever met and they have been working day in and day out on environmental and social justice issues in their time at Cal,” Whitney said in an email. “I could not think of a better person to be a campus leader.”
Voting for the ASUC elections will be held April 8, 9 and 10.