|October 2, 2007|
Union signs climate pledge
Stephen C. Ainlay, president of Union College
Union College President Stephen C. Ainlay recently signed the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment (ACUPCC), which formally commits the College to reducing and eventually eliminating its global warming emissions.
Union also promises to provide critical research and education that will help eliminate global warming.
Among the charter signatories of the document, Union joins hundreds of other universities and colleges in supporting the goals of the pact.
“I am proud to be associated with 300 other college and university presidents in committing to make immediate changes to reduce our environmental footprint and to develop a multi-year plan to do even more,” Ainlay recently told the campus community. “This commitment dovetails with our efforts to develop a work plan for sustainability as part of our strategic planning process.”
Ainlay made environmental causes a central theme in his convocation address, stating, “I am convinced that our response to issues related to the environment will be among those by which our era will be judged. I would ask each of you to commit to our efforts. We all bear responsibility for reducing our environmental impact and educating future generations.”
As part of the ACUPCC agreement, the College has pledged to develop a comprehensive long-term plan to cut emissions. In addition, the College has agreed to immediately begin using sustainable standards for all new buildings and contract for wind power, which accounts for 15 percent of the school’s total energy that is purchased annually.
ACUPCC is the first such effort by any major sector of society to set climate neutrality – not only a reduction – as its target. It is inspired by efforts like the U.S. Mayors Climate Protection Agreement, the U.S. Climate Action Partnership and other collective efforts by states and businesses.
To learn more, go to www.presidentsclimatecommitment.org.