UW-La Crosse students, faculty call for greater climate action from university

UWL students advocate for greater climate action
UWL students advocate for greater climate action(WEAU)
Published: Dec. 13, 2021 at 3:45 PM CST
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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU) - While some UW-La Crosse students may be enjoying the unseasonably warm weather, it’s making others focus on one thing...climate change.

Students, faculty, and community members gathered Monday to urge the university to create a greater climate action plan.

Environmental Studies Professor Alysa Remsburg says UWL has made strides with environmental initiatives, but it needs to do more.

“UWL has a green fund that has inspired other campuses, and it’s really put us in the right direction with things like installing solar panels on the Rec Center,” Remsburg explained. ‘But, it could really benefit from long-term follow-through of a sustainability coordinator who has vision.”

UWL senior Cassidy Hansen says a sustainability coordinator could help create a more environmentally-friendly campus.

“Getting rid of plastic straws, implementing greener energy, cutting down on fossil fuels,” Hansen detailed. “Making the dorms more sustainable, maybe looking into different infrastructure.”

Hansen says that in the past, advocates with Students for Sustainability had been told there isn’t room in the budget for the position.

“It’s really frustrating to know that we are the only UW school in the state that doesn’t have a sustainability coordinator,” Hansen expressed. “We just built this Prairie Springs [Center] that’s dedicated to the sciences, and it’s just very interesting they can’t allot any money to, at least, a sustainability coordinator.”

Both Hansen and fellow senior Erin Pierce hope that by organizing, students will illustrate the desire to have a coordinator on campus.

“It’s been mainly petition signatures and word of mouth, so having an actual event might spark something within administration and the university,” Pierce added.

Monday’s event was organized by Citizen Action of Wisconsin.

A similar call to action is being planned for the spring semester.

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