Earthlust raising money to fund more wind power

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

Earthlust will attempt to raise about $3350 by the end of the semester to fund additional wind power for the college. Swarthmore currently uses 500 megawatt hours of wind power per year at a price of $7500 in addition to other power sources used. The proposal that called for the increase in wind power usage, submitted to the College Budget Committee by Carr Everbach of the Engineering Department, calls for an additional 1000 megawatt hours per year of wind power at an additional price of $6700, and it is Earthlust’s goal to raise half of this money. The combined 1500 megawatt hours will support 15 percent of the college’s power needs, which is roughly half of the power used by the Science Center.

Fundraising will begin today; members of the group will be tabling and asking for donations at lunch. Anyone who gives five dollars or more will receive an Earthlust mug for free. Earthlust will be accepting cash and checks made payable to Swarthmore College. The group also added that supporters can make gifts with a credit card at http://gift.swarthmore.edu, with “Windpower/Earthlust” marked in the comment box. Earthlust Co-Coordinator E.B. Fouts ’07 noted that they would also be contacting alums and their parents to attempt to raise money and would also be able to provide more information for other parents. The group hopes to set up donation boxes at the coffee bars and Qub as well.

According to Fouts, Earthlust found that approximately 200 out of 280 people surveyed last semester would donate ten dollars to a campaign that would provide more wind power. Earthlust treasurer Michelle Tomasik ’07 said that overall, “there seemed to be a lot of support for [the campaign].” Most of the students surveyed who would not contribute the ten dollar amount were still in favor of the campaign in some way.

Increasing the amount of wind power used at Swarthmore has been Earthlust’s primary goal recently, and the fundraising will be their most important activity for the rest of the semester. The group has placed a big influence on the wind campaign since wind power is one of the safest sources of energy for the environment.

Earthlust Co-Coordinator Kristy Simmons ’07 noted that raising awareness about the use of wind power is often a focus of the group because “it is something that started at the institutional level and is something that [Earthlust] can change in terms of a policy.” Tomasik commented, “it is an important time for wind power” and added that it is essential to “support the industry as it grows.”

Earthlust recommends reading the following sources that supply information about wind power for anyone with questions:
http://www.swarthmore.edu/natsci/sciproject/windpower.html
http://www.awea.org
http://www.west-inc.com/reports/avian_collisions.pdf

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