[Philadelphia, PA] -- Today, the PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center, touting the leadership role that colleges and universities must play in the clean energy revolution, unveiled a 10-point plan to guide Pennsylvania’s college campuses toward 100 % renewable energy. Renewable Energy 101: Ten Tools for Moving your Campus to 100% Clean Energy, includes a series of factsheets highlighting 10 key tools to help campuses across Pennsylvania achieve 100 % clean, renewable energy systems. Click here to read the full report on getting campuses to 100% renewable energy.
“Colleges and universities across the country are situated to lead the charge in the transition to a 100 % clean energy future,” said David Masur, PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center Executive Director. “Pennsylvania’s colleges and universities have the ability and the know-how to lead us to a new energy future by taking bold steps to shift to clean energy and eliminate pollution from energy use. We hope that the ten point plan laid out in these fact sheets can help.”
According to a recent report by Environment America, colleges and universities serve more than 20 million students and spend more than $15 billion per year on energy. Given these eye-popping stats, bold commitments to clean energy by our colleges and universities can drive big investments in solutions. At the same time, as influential institutions, actions taken by higher education institutions can set an example in hundreds of communities across America while training the scientists, engineers, policymakers and civic leaders we need to move the nation toward sustainability.
The PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center, in collaboration with its national network, Environment America and the Student Public Interest Research Groups, have campaigns for 100 % renewable energy on dozens of campuses across the country.
“Pennsylvania’s institutions of higher education can be at the forefront of the nation’s rapid shift to clean, renewable energy,” said Masur , “That’s why we’re excited to be highlighting campus that are building the big shift to clean energy like Penn State,and setting far-reaching goals of meeting all of their energy needs with clean renewable resources.”
Clean energy and energy efficient technologies are growing fast and getting cheaper, making them more accessible. In the past 10 years, the United States has seen a 43-fold increase in solar power and a seven-fold increase in wind power, while the average American now uses 10 percent less energy.
“Setting renewable energy goals helps us engage students, faculty and staff in our sustainability initiatives. At the same time, it challenges us to be innovative in our teaching and research while attracting new students, and saving money and resources,” said Bradley Flamm, Director of the Office of Sustainability at West Chester University. “ We aim to significantly reduce our environmental impacts and work with our colleagues, neighbors, and partners to do the same.”
“Working to achieve 100 percent renewable energy on colleges and universities allows us to train young activists, future leaders and researchers to continue advocacy on clean energy off campus and in their communities”, said Masur .