College and university presidents are quickly signing on the dotted line to commit their campuses to be climate-friendly. Tulane University announced on Tuesday that it was the 500th signatory of the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment. The agreement binds presidents to make their campuses climate-neutral, meaning that they will eventually zero out their net emissions of greenhouse gases—a formidable goal, which some presidents say will be hard to reach.
Tulane has a special interest in the issue, said Scott S. Cowen, president of the university, in the announcement: “Global warming is a phenomenon that affects us all. For those of us living in New Orleans and other coastal communities, it has even greater urgency because several prominent scientists have linked global warming to the increased intensity of hurricanes.”
The number of signatories has climbed rapidly since the climate commitment’s origin, last year. In fact, Tulane’s signature was quickly followed by others. As of Tuesday evening, 507 institutions had signed on.