[SLIPPERY ROCK, PA] On Tuesday, November 27, 2012, Slippery Rock students and community members gathered to discuss Hydraulic Fracturing at Slippery Rock University, the new Senate Bill 367 which opened state owned land and public university land to drilling and associated processes, and the implications of these activities on the campus and community. Efforts of the student group, SRU Students for Sustainability, supported by the Sierra Student Coalition led to the success of this event and a turnout of over 40 people.
Student organizer, Alexandra Bowling, commented "This topic is sweeping the Pennsylvania nation. Everyone should be aware of the process and effects of Marcellus Shale drilling, including non-Pennsylvania residents. What first got me interested in Hydraulic Fracking was the idea that the process can harm the water quality around the affected area. People deserve the right to clean, drinking water."
“A Climate of Change” read the headline of the Huffington Post this past Saturday. The article read that a recent Rasmussen poll concluded that 68% of Americans recognize climate change as a “serious problem”. In the wake of Hurricane Sandy and after the climate silence controversy, I can’t help but get the sense there is a changing narrative about climate change in this country. Unfortunately it isn’t necessarily an uplifting narrative. The bottom line is people are concerned, they are concerned for their future and that of their children’s. People are beginning to realize the threat that a changing climate means to their livelihood.
So this isn’t the most uplifting way for the climate events of our time to unfold…but maybe there are some things to be learned and applied to our ongoing fight for the climate.
There are a few things we shouldn’t forget in order to ensure a better a future for ourselves, our family, and our world. First, we have to stay informed and stay involved. There are far too many people who would have you believe that caring about issues and exercising your rights to participate in decision making is a futile effort.
From Cornell and Ithaca College Students To Our Friends, Neighbors and Allies,
On Tuesday night, as we climbed back from the edge of our seats as the election results came in for President Obama, one thing was clear: Our movement to get off fossil fuels is going to keep growing. A year and a day ago, students from Cornell and Ithaca College, along with anti-fracking activists from across the Southern Tier and Upstate New York joined 12,000 people from across the country to encircle the White House and demand that President Obama block the Keystone XL pipeline. The fight isn’t over but it showed us that whether we’re organizing to stop the Tar Sands in Canada or fracking in our own backyards, this movement has a lot of fronts and a lot of solidarity.
That’s why this fall students have taken that connection to the next step. Across the country, nearly 50 campuses are starting the movement to divest university endowments from the fossil fuel industry. At Cornell alone there’s 5.6 billion dollars at stake and over 200 million at Ithaca College, a hefty portion of which we have a strong hunch is invested in Big Oil and Gas.
I launched RexxonMobil.com to hold fossil fuel executive Rex Tillerson accountable for his actions in an entertaining and sharable way that drives attention to the serious issue of global climate disruption. This summer, Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson said "we can adapt," to global climate disruption, so I think he should telecommute from places being ravaged by drought, wildfires and floods.
I traveled up and down the Gulf Coast this summer visiting my family in Louisiana. I have seen the impacts of extreme weather fueled by climate change and fossil fuels. Mr. Tillerson and his colleagues in the fossil fuel industry have no regard for the damage their companies are causing.
Do you like pizza....AND voting rights? Student suffrage and smooth jams? Last week at Ohio State University, a coalition of student activists held an event titled, “Re-Imagine the University” challenging students to evaluate the current power structure in place in public universities.
In the early morning hours on Thursday morning, students at Ohio State University gathered outside the south edge of campus. The Board of Trustees were arriving for a meeting, and as they trickled in, students peacefully and silently held up signs asking for one thing: Don’t Frack With OSU. The protest attracted the attention of the local television news and the Lantern (the OSU newspaper), taking place as the Board members arrived for breakfast and then for lunch.
Last night, February 15th, Coal Free Mizzou had their kickoff event with over 70 attendees not only including students, but MU faculty and community members from the Columbia area. Our campaign’s focus in the last semester was student health relating to the University of Missouri’s coal plant, which makes up for about 80% of the campus energy. Since fall of 2009, Coal Free had been a small group of about 20 students on Mizzou’s campus, but after last semester’s events, including a flash mob and asthma awareness event, we have grown in numbers and in passion.
Just a few days ago, on February 6th, over 50 students at Washington University in St. Louis joined Green Action in officially announcing our campaign to Renew WashU by shifting our school to 100% renewable energy. Here in Missouri, this campaign will not be an easy one, nor will it be won overnight. Not only is Missouri 85% dependent on coal, but coal CEOs sit on the WashU Board of Trustees and fund the University’s Consortium for C!#@n Coal Utilization.
When I heard the news that the Keystone XL pipeline had finally been rejected my first thought was “It’s about damn time!” I rushed to a computer to peruse articles in the Washington Post, the New York Times, the BBC, Politico, everywhere I turned was buzzing with updates from our unlikely narrative. An update of our resounding victory and the power that every single one of you has within. But this is simply one small part of this remarkable tale. In order to fully understand what we have just accomplished we must go back to where it began...