Members of the Geneseo Environmental Organization kicked off Earth Day last week by greeting President Christopher Dahl at his house and walking with him to work.
To encourage sustainable practices, Dahl agreed to suspend his daily routine of driving to work from his home on Main Street and instead walked to his office in Erwin Hall.
"President Dahl's status as an influential figure and symbol of the Geneseo community make him an important advocate for sustainability on campus," said junior Chris Larrabee, GEO treasurer-elect. "Our school has pledged carbon neutrality by 2050. To achieve this in the time needed by our planet, we need to start now. However small our individual actions are, they contribute to a whole so much bigger than any of us."
Dahl chatted with students as he passed the bronze bear fountain, which students had filled with garbage from around town as an explicit reminder of local human impact on the environment.
"This is great," Dahl said upon seeing the bags of trash hanging from the top of the fountain's pillar.
As the walk came to an end, Dahl addressed the importance of alternative forms of transportation.
"Since we have such a successful program in place with [Livingston Area Transit System] buses, we have significantly eliminated the need for cars on campus," he said. "In regards to the town of Geneseo, there is an issue of too little parking spots for village residents. Our campus needs to be a good neighbor by not bringing more cars."
Dahl said he would continue his pledge toward sustainability by biking to work on Thursday, Alternative Transportation Day. Provost Carol Long has promised to do her part by carpooling.