By Maddie Cullerton
Erin Delman ‘12, Meghan Haley Quigley ‘11, and Student Forum members Andrew Davis ‘11 and Andrew Churchill ‘11 are spearheading a movement for a new ‘green fee.’
A coalition of students from U-Sustain, the Environmental Club and Ozone House petitioned for the green fee on Monday, April 25 in Reamer Campus Center. Their goal was to get over 400 signatures from the student body in support of the implementation of the fee.
With clipboards in hand, the coalition members sought out students and explained the premise of the green fee.
“Basically there is an unused amount of money in the student activities account at the end of the year, 10 dollars per student would be taken from this account to be put towards sustainability initiatives on campus,” said Katie Murray ‘13.
Initiatives such as low flow showerheads, retro-fitting buildings, and other actions would make the school more environmentally sustainable.
“I think it’s a great idea and that when there is money that is not being used, then it should be appropriated to worthy initiatives such as improving sustainability and greener living on campus,” said Maxwell Prime ’14.
Given that the Environmental Club, U-Sustain and Ozone House are very active on campus, some people have questioned the need for the green fee.
“What has been lacking has been a major student initiative involving the entire campus that can match and exceed our institutional efforts in order to truly make us a green campus. With the green fee we can do just that,” said Churchill. “The green fee is so exciting because it is an entirely student-led initiative that will place Union in the ranks of the most eco-friendly schools in the nation.”
By the end of the day, over 500 signatures were attained.
Rebecca Robinson ’’12 said while signing that the green fee “sounds like a great idea. Union should stop spending money on useless things.”
Delman also noted that even if the Green Fee is approved by the administration, the signatures are still of great importance.
“We showed, via over 500 signatures, that students not only support our campaign, but also want to become better stewards of the environment,” she said.
Within the month, petitioners and students alike will be notified of whether or not the initiative has passed.
“I really hope it does pass,” said Meghan Haley Quigley. “I think that the passage of the green fee will be Union’s most important sustainability initiative to date.”