Corey: Sustainability from the bottom up


Two years ago, I started to pursue a passion, which involved changing the way I thought about my everyday consumption.

I stopped eating meat, started to use my bike more for transportation, quit supporting the plastic bottle industry and have now decided to find a career that contributes to a sustainable future of this planet.  However, it is time that more than a handful of us get involved with this movement.  

As students, we have more power than we give ourselves credit for. If every student stopped supporting express to make a statement about how much waste the program produces, the college would have no choice but to do something about it. Nevertheless, without that collaborative effort, several of us are told that maybe in the future we can do something about it. 

The Presidents Climate Commitment called on Simpson College to “implement serious changes in sustainability and create a plan for attaining carbon neutrality.” 

Carbon Neutrality? 

Right now, the college is catching the low hanging fruit items that are going to save the college money now. This past year, low flow toilets were put in along with Florissant light bulbs and light timers. All of these actions are saving the college money now, which is why they were done.

Wake up Simpson College! There is no way we can reach carbon neutrality if we are simply looking out for our check book and only willing to catch the low hanging fruit. In order for carbon neutrality to be reached, we all need to grab a latter and reach higher.

Every student, faculty and staff member of this institution has to be thinking differently. This change won’t and shouldn’t start though in a 32-person board room. This change will need to come from the student body , which is the core of this institution. If the students are not willing to change, then why should the administration be willing to change?

For years, every program I supported or implemented, I have tried to convince the decision makers that it wouldn’t be too complicated. Why shouldn’t it be complicated? Saving the planet is a pretty complicated thing and is going to require stirring things up.

We are the customer and the base of this institution. We have every right to make a fuss about the way Simpson does things; especially, if we are trying to contribute to the President’s Climate Commitment. 

President Barack Obama once said that change happens from the ground up. Changing the sustainable efforts at Simpson will not come from a 32-person board room like many of us are told it will.

Change needs to come from the students who aren’t only thinking about the checkbook. Right now, the decision makers of the school are not committing fully to carbon neutrality and it is time students do something about it. ALL of us.

What do you say…ready to grab a ladder?