If President Bok took a day trip down to Black Rock Forest, he would probably never again be able to consider seriously selling the land.
But as of now, The Consolidated Edison utility company still wants to buy some of the forest from Harvard to construct an eight-billion gallon reservoir, an integral part of the company's proposed Storm King power plant.
Environmentalists from the Hudson valley have been fighting the plant for a decade, saying that it would scar the Hudson scenery, kill nearly half the striped bass population of the river and possibly throw off the forest's ecological balance with the intrustion of salty, polluted water.
Harvard does not have to do anything about the land now because a number of court suits are pending to halt the plant's construction. Yet Harvard, as owner of 240 acres of land vital to the project, could exert pressure--either for or against--if it so chose.
Only once, in a 1970 letter from President emeritus Nathan M. Pusey '28 to The New York Times, has the University gone on the record in opposition to the power facility.
No one knows how much longer the court hearings will continue, but the environmentalists are starting to enlist more troops for the battle if the decisions should go in favor of Con Ed.
Nine members of Harvard Ecology Action traveled down to the forest last Saturday to get a first-hand view of the Hudson Highlands. They came back more convinced than ever that Harvard would be doing the area and itself a grave injustice by selling the land.
They traipsed through the forest on the many marked trails and picnicked by Aleck Meadow Reservoir where John S. Stillman '40, son of the donor of the land, condemned Harvard for its lackadaisical attitude toward the forest's upkeep.