Who doesn’t want to protect our water supply? Traditionally, we could expect our major land-grant research university to provide this leadership.
Penn State offers an environmental engineering major, it has an environmental resource management program in the College of Agriculture, and the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences has an Earth and Environmental Systems Institute: “a portal to environmental research, education, and outreach programs.” On the Penn State sustainability website, Senior Vice President David Gray states: “Through our commitment to sustainability we have the scale and the reach to effect real change.”
It’s ironic that we cannot count on our university to “effect real change” and come up with a more creative and sustainable use for the land along Whitehall Road that is about to become a large, luxury student housing complex. The impact of this sale on the part of the university to Toll Brothers will harm both the ClearWater Conservancy’s Slab Cabin Run initiative and the drinking water for State College residents for years to come.
It’s time that Penn State generates some positive press by being stewards of our land and water.
Harvey R. Gilbert, State College