"All environments are in decline; we want progress without pollution." That's what Tony Cortese, president of Second Nature, said in his keynote luncheon address when the Institute for Sustainable Energy (ISE) hosted "The Green Campus Conference" in the Paul E. Johnson Sr. Community Conference Room on April 19. The event brought more than 100 administrators, faculty, and students from Connecticut's 17 public colleges and universities to Eastern to discuss financing green campus initiatives and the technology involved. It was also a celebration of the 10th anniversary of the ISE.
"If all the world lived like America, we would need five planets," Cortese continued. "Traditional economic development hurts the environment . . . we need it to become environmental development. We want sustainability to be Second Nature, which is where we got our company name."
At the conference, energy experts spoke on issues surrounding financing green campus projects and the latest energy technology. Speakers included Eastern President Elsa Núñez; Robert Kennedy, president of the Board of Regents of Higher Education for the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities; Nancy Tinker, director of facilities management and planning at Eastern; Rich Steeves, acting chair at the Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund; Rob Pratt, president for GreenerU; Dave Ljungquist of the Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority; Chris Halpin, president of Celtic Energy; Robert Keefrider, director at FuelCell Energy; and CL&P program administrators Randy Pagnini and Dave McIntosh. Eastern also provided tours of the University's LEED designed facilities, building automated systems and 400KW Fuel Cell.