RELEASE: January 10, 2012
Teplitzky, 267-307-4707, firstname.lastname@example.org
College Basketball Gets
Clean Energy Boost from Sierra Club
In Unique Move, Sierra
Club Sponsors Clean Energy Match-Ups at Indiana and Kentucky
Bloomington, IN - As college
basketball season heats up, the nation’s largest grassroots environmental
organization is getting in on the action sponsoring major conference games at
Indiana University on January 12 and the University of Kentucky January 17. The
Sierra Club Clean Energy Match-Ups are meant to connect sports to the idea that
dirty and dangerous on campus coal plants need to be replaced by clean and
affordable solutions for the health of the players and the students.
More than 60 universities operate
their own dirty coal plants right on campus posing a real health threat to
students and the surrounding communities.
“Aging coal plants on-campus release
dangerous pollutants such as mercury, arsenic, lead and sulfur dioxide into the
air and water. Instead of polluting their own campuses, and endangering the
health of their students, schools like Indiana and Kentucky should be the
nation’s leaders – investing in innovative clean energy technologies for the 21st
century,” said Quentin James, National Director of the Sierra Student
Coalition, the Sierra Club’s youth-led Chapter.
“With the Sierra Club Clean
Energy Match-Ups we’re showing our support for these top teams while urging the
universities to be their best by protecting the health of students and local
communities with clean energy solutions instead of polluting coal.”
Since the Sierra Club launched
the Campuses Beyond Coal campaign 19 schools have committed to stop burning
coal on campus. Both Indiana and Kentucky are missing from that list and lagging
behind conference and regional rivals already moving off dirty coal including
the University of Minnesota, Clemson and Western Kentucky University.
Game sponsorship is a new move
for the Sierra Club and something usually reserved for larger corporate
interests. However, the Sierra Club Clean Energy Match-Ups highlight growing
support for the organization’s mission to move college campuses, and the nation,
“On more than 40 campuses around
the country over 40,000 students have joined the campaign to make sure their
school makes the switch to clean energy,” said Mary Anne Hitt, Director of the
Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign. “College students have been at the
forefront of every major social movement in recent history and the drive to
move our nation beyond coal towards safe, renewable solutions is no different.
These student leaders show that young people want a cleaner, safer and
healthier future for our nation.”
The Clean Energy Match-Ups,
Indiana vs. Minnesota and Kentucky vs. Arkansas, are early conference games for
both teams as they head into the most important stretch of the college
basketball regular season.
“I grew up in rural Kentucky as a
Wildcats basketball fan and now as a student I’m working to make sure UK is a
real leader by investing in clean energy that will create good jobs here in
Kentucky, boost our economy and mean healthier air and water for everyone,” said
Patrick Johnson a senior at the University of Kentucky. “I couldn’t be more
excited to see two things so important to me come together with the Sierra Club
Clean Energy Match-Up here in Kentucky.”
The games will feature signs,
giveaways and announcements from the Sierra Club in support of the teams and
the universities. They’ll encourage students to send text messages to
university administrators, take slam dunk photo petitions and combine their
fanaticism for the team with their demands for clean air and a healthier
“We hope to get more Hoosier
basketball fans involved in making Indiana a leader off the court by retiring
the coal plant on campus and replacing it with clean energy solutions. Moving
off coal will mean cleaner air and a healthier campus that Hoosier fans can be
really proud of,” said Megan Anderson a junior at Indiana University who
has been co-leading the campaign to move IU beyond coal for the past two years.
The games kick-off the spring
semester at both schools setting the stage for increased campus activity calling
on campus administrators to switch from dirty coal to cleaner alternatives.
Student fans will continue to see signs and advertisements saying, “Let’s Score
One for Clean Energy” throughout the season on each campus.