Climate Commitment

Climate Commitment  LogoAlong with colleges and Universities across the United States, Shippensburg University is taking action on climate change and preparing students through research and education. Through the development of the Climate Leadership Network, Second Nature strives to “accelerate climate action in, and through, higher education.” Shippensburg University signed the Climate Commitment in May 2020, agreeing to develop a Climate Action Plan by 2023 that integrates carbon neutrality and community resilience planning. Of the 720 current signatories, 114 schools have committed to this inclusive planning effort. 

We are currently finalizing a Greenhouse Gas Inventory on campus which will set a baseline for carbon neutrality planning efforts. Campus and community members are meeting regularly to discuss ideas and opportunities for collaboration and implementation. The community focused Climate Action Plan will integrate carbon neutrality planning efforts with capacity-building to promote regional planning efforts. The plan will include: setting a target date for achieving carbon neutrality on campus, opportunities to reduce greenhouse gases, and a resilience assessment to identify initial indicators and current areas of vulnerability in the community. 

Watch our virtual signing event and Q&A held on April 22, 2020.

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) has committed to supporting this effort. SU alumna and Pennsylvania Secretary of Conservation and Natural Resources Cindy Dunn joined President Carter in signing the commitment on behalf of DCNR, the South Mountain Partnership, and Michaux State Forest

The Center for Land Use and Sustainability is a strong supporter of this initiative, and CLUS Director Dr. Claire Jantz will be leading the Campus-Community Task Force.

The internal implementation team is led by the Climate Action Plan Committee. Members include: 

  • Dr. Claire Jantz-SU Sustainability Coordinator/Professor of Geography-Earth Science (Co-Chair) 
  • Chris Clarke- Executive Director of Operations
  • Dr. Kim Garris- Vice President of External Relations & Communications 
  • SGA Appointed Student- Ian Thompson (2020-2021)
  • Dr. Pablo Delis-(Biology)-Applied Sustainability and Climate Advisory Team Lead
  • Greg Day-(Director of Network, Telecommunications and Infrastructure)-Built Environment Resilience Advisory Team Lead
  • Raven Francis-(Ceddia Union Building (CUB), Assistant Director for Operations)-Social Change and Green Initiatives Team Lead
  • SGA Appointed Student- Ian Thompson (2020-2021)
  • Antonia Price- CLUS Project Manager/Climate Commitment Coordinator (Facilitator) 

The Applied Sustainability and Climate Advisory Team is responsible for integrating sustainability and climate themes into pedagogy across campus through curriculum development and faculty support, student success and workforce development, internships, research, and other student opportunities. This group is responsible for identifying opportunities, developing initiatives and resources, and communicating with staff, faculty, students, and community partners. 

  • Dr. Pablo Delis (Biology)-Lead 

The purpose of the Built Environment Resilience Advisory Team is to identify opportunities to implement infrastructure improvements on campus. Infrastructure may be related to waste management and recycling, technology, energy, commuter services, and green infrastructure (green roofs, bioswales, and naturalized areas). This team is responsible for identifying opportunities, advocating for improvements, and implementing projects and initiatives. 

  • Greg Day (Director of Network, Telecommunications and Infrastructure)- Lead

The focus of the Social Change and Green Initiatives Team is to incorporate sustainability into daily life on campus. This team is responsible for identifying opportunities to integrate carbon neutrality efforts across campus, communicating initiatives, and creating buy-in. This team supports social change by incorporating social justice, health, and food access. 

  • Raven Francis (Ceddia Union Building (CUB), Assistant Director for Operations)-Lead

The Campus-Community Task Force supports the resilience planning component of the Climate Commitment. This task force connects the Shippensburg University Campus with the broader community of the South Mountain Partnership.

Learn more about The Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitments, an initiative through Second Nature. Millersville University, our sister school in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, updated their Climate Action Plan in 2019 through this program. West Chester and Slippery Rock Universities are also members of the Climate Leadership Network

Contact climateaction@ship.edu to contact the Climate Action Plan Committee.