Article - Office of College Advancement

Garamendi Challenges Universities to Go Green

Saturday, September 13, 2008—Reprinted from KCBS 740AM. (Article with audio of KCBS' George Harris' report.)

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) - Lt. Gov. John Garamendi is challenging California college campuses to become more energy efficient and sustainable, and points to one Bay Area college as a leading example.

This last year, Ohlone College was able to reduce it’s electricity consumption by 82 percent and natural gas by 78 percent over a nine month period. Garamendi now wants to know what standards will be used when the University of California, Berkeley builds its new athletic training facility.

“I said, ‘Is that being built to the highest standard?’ Well the answer is, that building is being built to a high standard, but not to the highest possible standard,” said Garamendi.

Those standards, Garamendi says, must be the highest in order for California schools to begin reducing their carbon footprints.

“Only in that way can we reduce our green house gas consumption. We know that the built environment is about 32 percent of the total energy consumption in California.”

But politicians and lawmakers can only do so much to finally force school administrators to make changes. Garamendi says that for change to happen quickly, students have to get involved.

“Perhaps, most important of all, is for the students to build a green environment, for the students to take the lead and to put the pressure on the administration and on themselves to reduce their green house gas consumption.”

Copyright 2008, KCBS. All Rights Reserved.

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