One of my passions is effort to curb climate change and end the energy dependency on coal and oil. I was formerly a campus coordinator for Greenpeace earlier this semester but found it to be too stressful building up a local organization from nothing. My friends did not have my enthusiasm for it and I struggled getting anything started alone. Then I decided to give that endeavor up and join one that had some steam already, the Coal Free Mizzou movement, supported by Sierra Club and Green Corps.
Ryan Doyle is a paid organizer who knows what’s going on and has been organizing everything so far. I first got his name and e-mail when I went to Sustain Mizzou in an effort to work with them. I put off contacting him for a long time thinking I would be able to get something going on my own. But I just couldn’t get the courage up to go petition all alone or recruit members. But this last Thursday I finally got in touch with him and it’s been rewarding for me already in the past few days.
I met him and another organizer, Tyler, at the Student Success Center on campus Friday. Ryan is tall and it turns out, interestingly enough, that he went to the same high school as my girlfriend back in Duluth, Minn., although he was two years ahead. We called up professors, looking for faculty endorsements to validate our coming proposal to the chancellor and had some success. It’s really a new experience for me and it sounds like an effective process.
The goal is to get coal off the MU campus by at least 2030, as of now MU has no plans to do so and without a push it won’t happen until it’s too late. As soon as some goals are set and people are put in charge of following through with those goals things can get done. MU needs to do this to be a leader for other universities on being responsible on the issue of the energy crisis and climate change.