Climate Action Plan: Will students actually begin to take action?

Caroline Campbell

Layout Coordinator

Giving back and going green: Two principles that Millersville University (MU) prides itself on when implementing President Anderson’s Bold Path. In January, MU finalized their Climate Action Plan, which is the framework in which the campus will achieve carbon neutrality by 2040.

Through focusing on a two-pronged strategy, implementing 10 goals and incorporating five guiding principles the university is focused on inspiring students to contribute positivity to their communities through adopting and practicing this “sustainability” mentality.

When reading through the 46-page document main themes are highlighted including, new buildings, transportation, purchasing, waste and promoting climate literacy across campus.

However, is Millersville simply hopping on the green bandwagon?

Similarly, to the 1990’s when “diversity” was highlighted will “sustainability and going green” just become another higher education fad? Colleges and universities who are making efforts in going green are becoming the norm and are found splashed across newspapers and online journals.

The plan in essence is not a bad idea, the idea of having a campus that is more aware and doing more to reduce their carbon footprint and ultimately their impact on the environment is a positive. But it is more than just “telling” people what to do and how to do it, but changing the mindset of people.

Although educational initiatives are put in place in the plan and having students actively engage in the efforts, the question arises will the majority of the MU student “actively” engage in this new plan? Will they don the caps of public action or will it simply fall to the wayside and be another “cookie-cutter” version of an ideology, much like what happened to diversity.

Students have already been enraged by construction and a higher housing cost. Administration states that they are attempting to create a better environment, but when students are faced with problems they focus on the here and now.

Once you muddle through the fancy terminology, the Climate Action Plan is not a bad idea: to teach students how to be more effective in their environment and hold the campus to higher standard of living. But only through student action and faculty and staff manpower can the goal be truly achieved. So it up to the students to stimulate this growth and ensure that faculty and staff will put full force into this plan rather than create another shallow composition of an ideology.

To read the full plan, please visit…PlanJan2016.pdf.