Environmental leader Joanna Underwood to discuss “Turning Trash to Fuel: Ending Our Country’s Addiction to Oil” at the Vassar Bookstore, February 20, 2012

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY -- Sustainable energy advocate Joanna Underwood, president of New York City-based nonprofit Energy Vision, will speak about “Turning Trash to Fuel: Ending Our Country’s Addiction to Oil” on Monday, February 20, at 5:30pm in the Vassar Bookstore in Main Building. Free and open to the public, this event is presented by the Vassar Bookstore Author Series.

Twice chosen by the publication 
Earth Times as one of the world’s 100 most influential environmental leaders, Joanna Underwood founded the national nonprofit organization Energy Vision in 2007 to “analyze and promote ways to make a swift transition to pollution-free renewable energy sources and to the clean, petroleum-free transportation fuels of the future.” Energy Vision’s current research is exploring the broader energy potential of biomethane fuel.

Underwood has been leader in environmental research, publications, policy study, and change for over thirty years. Prior to founding Energy Vision, she headed the national nonprofit organization INFORM, which analyzes environmental business practices and identifies solutions for preventing waste, contamination, and the destruction of natural resources. Under her guidance INFORM became a prime force in educating decision-makers in the public and private sectors about the need for preventive approaches to some of this country’s most complex environmental problems. INFORM also produced numerous alternative fuel-related studies, including
Drive for Clean Air (1989), a groundbreaking comparison of fuels that might replace petroleum-based fuels in transportation, concluding that natural gas was the leading contender.

Underwood has served on advisory boards for the U.S. Department of Energy, participated during the Clinton Administration in the President’s Council on Sustainable Development, and has been a board member of the Rocky Mountain Institute and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. She currently serves on the boards of the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation in New York City and the Clean Vehicle Education Foundation in Washington, DC.  A graduate of Bryn Mawr College, Underwood received an honorary doctor of science degree from Wheaton College.

The Vassar College Bookstore Author Series began in 2009 to highlight the richness of thought and accomplishment of both faculty and alumae/i authors. The series has expanded to include national authors, public intellectuals, and documentary filmmakers.

Individuals with disabilities requiring accommodations or information on accessibility should contact the Campus Activities Office at (845) 437-5370. Without sufficient notice 
appropriate space and/or assistance may not be available. Directions to the campus can be found at

Vassar College is a highly selective, coeducational, independent, residential, liberal arts college founded in 1861.

Posted by Office of Communications Tuesday, February 14, 2012