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Dear President Spanier,

As the president of this university, we call on you to lead us away from fossil fuels towards a brighter, more sustainable future.

Using twenty-five million dollars, as is proposed in the agenda for the September 17th Board of Trustees Meeting, to invest in what is just another short-sighted and dirty energy source (natural gas), is not the answer. This is a misuse of student tuition and tax-payer dollars.

Penn State needs a long term and properly funded plan to transition toward sustainable energy options.

As Penn State students and members of the student organization Eco-Action who take pride in our school, we must address the issue of energy at Penn State’s University Park campus. Being such a prestigious and respected university, Penn State is held to a higher standard than many other universities and institutions. As the academic face of Pennsylvania, it is our responsibility to lead the way in innovation, not mire in energy sources known to be dirty and dangerous.

We pride ourselves on maintaining high academic standards, so why should our environmental standards be any different? This is why we urge you to make the change from a coal-powered campus to one that is powered by renewable and sustainable energy sources. We do not believe that fossil fuels, including natural gas, are a long-term solution to our energy question.

Instead we propose a plan be drawn for a swift transition away from these dirty energy sources.

If you believe that this is an unrealistic request, simply look to our sister campus, Penn State Berks, whose Chancellor, Susan Speece, has made a commitment to a sustainable future by signing the American College & University President’s Climate Commitment. A good place to start would be for you to do the same.

Sincerely,

Eco-Action

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