Bemidji State University to sign Presidents Climate Commitment

BEMIDJI, Minn. — On Monday, Nov. 17, Bemidji State University President Dr. Jon E. Quistgaard will sign the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment, adding Bemidji State to a growing roster of nearly 600 colleges and universities nationwide who have signed the commitment to become carbon neutral.

The signing will take place during a 7 p.m. ceremony at the American Indian Resource Center. The event is open to the public, and light local appetizers will be available. Environmental leaders from campus and the Bemidji community will be on-hand to share their knowledge regarding climate change initiatives.

About the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment
The American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment is a high-visibility effort to address global warming by garnering institutional commitments to neutralize greenhouse gas emissions, and to accelerate the research and educational efforts of higher education to equip society to re-stabilize the earth’s climate.

Building on the growing momentum for leadership and action on climate change, the Presidents Climate Commitment provides a framework and support for America’s colleges and universities to go climate neutral. The commitment recognizes the unique responsibility that institutions of higher education have as role models for their communities and in training the people who will develop the social, economic and technological solutions to reverse global warming.

Presidents signing the commitment pledge to eliminate their campuses’ greenhouse gas emissions over time. This involves:
• completing an emissions inventory.
• within two years, setting a target date and interim milestones for becoming climate neutral.
• taking immediate steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by choosing from a list of short-term actions.
• integrating sustainability into the curriculum and making it part of the educational experience.
• making the action plan, inventory and progress reports publicly available.

The college and university presidents and chancellors who are joining and leading the Commitment believe that exerting leadership in addressing climate change will stabilize and reduce their long-term energy costs, attract excellent students and faculty, attract new sources of funding, and increase the support of alumni and local communities.

For more information on the commitment, visit

Other local universities which have signed the commitment include the University of Minnesota, Winona State University, the College of St. Catherine and the University of North Dakota.

For more information, please contact Erika Bailey-Johnson, University sustainability coordinator, at (218) 755-2560.