Presidents Climate Commitment
In September 2010, Emmanuel College President Sr. Janet Eisner, SND committed to sharply reducing and eventually eliminating all of the College's net global warming emissions and accelerating the research and educational efforts to equip society to re-stabilize the earth's climate. The pledge came with Sr. Janet's signing of the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment (ACUPCC), joining the leaders of more than 680 other institutions across the country.
"I am pleased to join college and university presidents from across the country in this important initiative," said Sr. Janet. "Emmanuel College has long been committed to supporting efforts to create a better world. The American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment is a significant step towards that goal."
Sr. Janet will create a comprehensive institutional action plan to move towards climate neutrality. In the short term, Emmanuel has taken the following concrete actions:
- Require ENERGY STAR certification for products purchased by the College;
- Encourage public transportation; and
- Participate in the Waste Minimization component of the national RecycleMania competition
The ACUPCC is the first such effort by any major sector of society to set climate neutrality - not just a reduction - as its target. This undertaking by America's colleges and universities 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.
With inertia at the federal and international levels, the ACUPCC network is an important vehicle for highlighting the leadership of the sector as a whole, and how it is serving as a role model for regional, national and international initiatives.
As a collective effort of more than 680 institutions, representing more than 5.7 million students - about one-third of the nation's college students - the ACUPCC serves as a vehicle for showcasing the leadership of the higher education sector. Still, each institution retains the autonomy to chart its own course and set its own pace. More than 200 institution-specific climate action plans have been submitted to date and are available for public viewing at www.acupcc.org/reportingsystem. They provide exciting, diverse examples of how it is possible to fulfill this commitment in a variety of ways.
"Colleges and universities must lead the effort to reverse global warming for the health and well-being of current and future generations," said Michael Crow, president of Arizona State University and co-chair of the ACUPCC Steering Committee. "On behalf of all of the signatories, I welcome Sr. Janet Eisner, SND to the commitment. We are honored and pleased to have her join us."
The American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment is a high-visibility effort to address global warming by garnering institutional commitments to eliminate net greenhouse gas emissions and accelerate the research and educational efforts of higher education to equip society to re-stabilize the earth's climate. The ACUPCC is lead by a Steering Committee comprised of more than 20 university and college presidents and is staffed and supported by Second Nature, a Boston-based national nonprofit organization, with additional support provided by the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE).
To lean more about the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment, visit: www.presidentsclimatecommitment.org.