tom sanders

The California Student Sustainability Coalition (CSSC) sponsored the second annual Energy Action’s Campus Climate Challenge on Dexter Lawn Wednesday.

The event, held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., asked the question, “Is the environment getting in the way of our lifestyle or is our lifestyle getting in the way of the environment?”

More than 104 universities throughout the United States and Canada participated in the challenge with the goal of making campuses more sustainable by reducing emissions and developing on-site renewable energy sources, according to a CSSC press release.

The Cal Poly demonstration was co-sponsored by Poly Greens and the Cal Poly Bio-diesel club.

Campus Climate Challenge is centered around a long-term contest, which is aimed at eliminating global warming, pollution and the creation of an online community of climate activists from which the community can draw ideas and resources.

Last year, campus groups circulated a petition for “Energy Independence Day,” but this year is much more involved, CSSC President Jesse Churchill said.

The event also segued into the presentation of a document entitled “New energy for campuses” by Interim Provost Robert Detweiler. The document was sponsored and created by the Apollo Alliance and calls for action at Cal Poly.

The event comes in the wake of a renewed CSU policy passed in September and will call for an increase of renewable energy to 20 percent of total CSU energy by 2010, Churchill said.

“It’s about raising awareness,” Poly Greens President David Kirk said, adding that it is important to make students aware of the movement for sustainability.

“It’s turning into a real movement,” said Mike Marcus, CSSC member and Cal Poly Foundation trustee.

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