Letter to the editor | The time is now

October 28, 2013 

On Wednesday, the state Department of Environmental Protection will hold a public meeting at the State College Area High School South Building regarding the permitting of Penn State’s conversion of the West Campus power plant from coal to natural gas. At 6:30 p.m., presentations will be made by Penn State and DEP explaining the transition and permitting process.

A public hearing, requested by residents and local municipal governments, will be held at 8 p.m. This is an opportunity for public participation to affect the future of the Centre Region.

When the entire life cycle of shale gas is considered, it can be greater than greenhouse gas emissions from coal.

Methane migration, radioactive components, heavy metals, effects on pure water, clean air, the health and welfare of our forests and farmland, of humans and wildlife, need to be considered when fracking is part of the equation.

Due diligence was not done by the university in considering alternative sustainable energy — solar, wind, geothermal — in its energy mix going forward. Renewables combined with serious conservation is the direction necessary to secure a healthy future for our planet and ourselves.

Climate disruption is upon us. Penn State has signed onto a 30-year commitment to continue using fossil fuel. The time is now to make the changes necessary for a sustainable energy future.

Please attend the public hearing and consider speaking. Sign up prior to 8 to comment for five minutes. Your participation is important to create change. Change is our only hope for a healthy Earth, a healthy future.

Pam Steckler

State College

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