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Jan. 28, 2010 Volume 31, No. 17

Gauging greenhouse gas

MU submitted its Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory Jan. 15, one year after Chancellor Brady Deaton signed the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment, an agreement among more than 650 signatory colleges and universities to reach climate neutrality.

“Greenhouse gas emissions might be the most important environmental problem we face today,” says Steve Burdic, campus sustainability coordinator. “This report helped us to identify the major sources of greenhouse gas, such as what we are using to generate our power and people’s habits, so we know where to concentrate our efforts to reduce it. We have to change the infrastructure and educate the public so that we can utilize a better, environmentally friendly fuel source and reduce the amount of energy that we use on an annual basis.”

“These actions are the next step toward eliminating coal use on our campus,” Deaton says. “This will not happen overnight, but we must take action now. The next step is to complete our climate action plan, which we have started working on and is due next year. We want the entire campus community to be involved in the process through communicating ways individuals can change their behaviors, as well as how administrators can change the infrastructure.”