We wholeheartedly support the current student-led drive urging the College to commit to purchasing 100 percent of its electricity from clean, renewable sources of energy. In order to more fully articulate its commitment to curbing global warming and promoting energy independence for our nation, the College needs to take this meaningful step forward.
As centers for innovative thought and forward-minded action, all higher education institutions like Bowdoin that have commendable social consciences should be expected to adopt such common-sense plans. And no doubt, a commitment to purchase renewable-energy electricity would be entirely practical for Bowdoin.
Bar Harbor's College of the Atlantic recently signed a 20-year commitment to purchase 100 percent of its electricity from wind-energy sources right here in Maine. Bates and Colby recently committed to buying 100 percent of their electricity from renewable energy sources like biomass and hydropower.
The list goes on, and it goes on for a reason.
Many of these purchases have resulted in mere drop-in-the-barrel differences in the colleges' energy budgets, and the case could be the same for Bowdoin. There are many routes Bowdoin could take, including purchasing renewable energy credits, taking the most cost-efficient routes to acquiring exclusively clean-energy electricity, or purchasing renewable energy from sources here in Maine. We're sure one of these options could be a perfect fit for Bowdoin.
For a college that relentlessly asserts its commitment to serving the common good, this move would set an example entirely consistent with that mission. Moreover, geopolitical situations in the world are increasingly revolving around oil and other dirty sources of energy that may one day lead to the drowning of our mascot, the polar bear. Bowdoin should do all in its power to combat fossil-fuel-based energy uses that emit greenhouse gases and support renewable energy sources in America.
We urge President Mills and the college administration to seriously consider these points. The plan makes sense. It's practical. It's consistent with Bowdoin's mission. It's simply the right thing to do for the College.
The editorial represents the majority view of The Bowdoin Orient's editorial board. The editorial board is comprised of James D. Baumberger, Drew Fulton, Bobby Guerette, Evan S. Kohn, and Beth Kowitt.