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UMaine Today Magazine


President's Message

Robert Kennedy, UMaine President
President Robert A. Kennedy
 

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Our nation and our world often depend on universities to take the lead in affecting societal change. This is most appropriate, since institutions like the University of Maine have many unique attributes, most of which are related to the presence of a scholarly community and bright, talented, motivated students. Moreover, university communities are expected to develop leaders, and we know that we can do that most effectively when we take leadership in helping to address some of the broad concerns that affect us all.

That is why I am very proud of UMaine's ongoing efforts to lead the way in energy conservation and environmental sustainability. I recently signed the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment. Modeled after a similar pledge many of our nation's mayors signed, this document commits us to meeting certain targets and working toward what's called "climate neutrality."

While that is a highly visible and important element of UMaine's focus and commitment, it should not overshadow the outstanding work being done all through our community to help UMaine become a model institution for reducing its negative environmental impact while increasing efficiency to save money. Much of our activity in this area is driven by students and supported by our faculty. We have tapped the academic expertise of faculty and students in areas like engineering and climate change, getting their help in finding ways to achieve our goals. This has been an effective partnership and we are seeing good results.

For example, UMaine's aggressive recycling program has reduced our waste stream by 45 percent. UMaine uses approximately 30 percent renewable power, and our maintenance staff uses environmentally friendly cleaning products. Our efforts to employ modern technology to save electricity were recently recognized in a formal way by the state's Public Utilities Commission, which awarded UMaine a $50,000 incentive check to help continue with the installation of energy-saving lighting on campus.

Our agenda is aggressive, and we are determined to continue this momentum. The payoff, in terms of saving money, improving the environment, and modeling good citizenship for our students, will be significant indeed.

Robert A. Kennedy Signature

UMaine Today Magazine
Department of University Relations
5761 Howard A. Keyo Public Affairs Building
Phone: (207) 581-3744 | Fax: (207) 581-3776


The University of Maine
, Orono, Maine 04469
207-581-1110
A Member of the University of Maine System