NWF Releases 2008 Report Card on Sustainability in Higher Ed
The National Wildlife Federation has released its 2008 Report Card, "Campus Environment 2008: A National Report Card on Sustainability in Higher Education, Trends and New Developments in Leadership, Academics, and Operations." The 2008 Report Card, based on a survey conducted in partnership with Princeton Survey Research Associates International, reviews programs at 1,068 institutions. The study recognizes colleges and universities for exemplary performance and awards academic letter grades (A through D)
Pennsylvania Campuses to Receive Solar Power Education Funding
PPL Electric Utilities has announced that it will provide $250,000 to support Solar Scholars, a program run by a Pennsylvania non-profit. Specifically, the donation will help fund solar power education and the installation of 12 solar power systems at Pennsylvania colleges and universities. Participants will be invited to apply for grants in the fall to install a photovoltaic system on their campus that generates a minimum of 3 kilowatts.
Pomona College Hires Sustainability Coordinator
Pomona College (CA) has hired Bowen Patterson as its first Sustainability Coordinator. Patterson is tasked with helping students with sustainability projects and helping the College to improve energy efficiency and reduce waste. The new Sustainability Coordinator will also help Pomona with a sustainability strategic plan. Patterson graduated from Pomona and went on to earn a Masters of Urban Planning and a Graduate Certificate in Sustainable Cities at the University of Southern California.
Portland State U President Promotes Alternative Transportation
Newly hired Portland State University (OR) President Wim Wiewel rode his bike to report for his first day of work in an effort to promote sustainable modes of transportation. The new PSU President rode with the school Provost, a City Commissioner, and Major-elect of Portland. A small reception awaited him and his colleagues following the morning ride. The University, this fall, plans to expand its bike co-op, install 125 new bike racks, and build an indoor bike parking garage that will provide storage for a total of 100 bicycles.
Sierra Club Names 2008 Top Ten Green Campuses
An article in the Sierra Club's September/October 2008 issue of Sierra Magazine names the top ten green campuses in the U.S. They include, Middlebury College (VT), University of Colorado at Boulder, University of Vermont at Burlington, Warren Wilson College (NC), Evergreen State College (WA), Arizona State University at Tempe, University of Florida at Gainesville, Oberlin College (OH), University of Washington at Seattle, and Tufts University (MA). The top schools earned points in ten categories: policies for building, energy, food, investment, procurement, and transportation; curriculum; environmental activism; waste management; and overall commitment to sustainability.
Surveys Show Increasing Student Commitment to Green Companies
Experience, Inc. has completed a survey of 2,500 college students and recent graduates. The survey found that 81 percent of responders saw significance in working for an environmentally aware company. The same poll found that 79 percent would probably accept a job at an eco-friendly company over a conventional one. Another survey completed by Alloy Media + Marketing found that 41 percent of the incoming college class of 2012 prefers socially responsible brands, compared to 37 percent from last year's incoming freshman class.
U Connecticut to Go Trayless
The University of Connecticut has announced plans to go trayless this fall. The project, which will be implemented in 7 of 8 dining halls, aims to reduce the amount of wasted food and water, which is used to wash the trays. During a weeklong trial last semester in two dining halls, UConn saved about 760 pounds of food and more than 913 gallons of water just by going tray-less at dinnertime.
U Florida Challenges Community to Use Green Transportation
The University of Florida is challenging students, faculty, and staff to give up their cars and use alternative transportation on October 17, 2008 and as often as possible, with the hope that it becomes a habit. In meeting the challenge, campus members will pledge to commute by an alternative to single-occupancy vehicle travel on One Less Car Day and as often as possible throughout the fall semester. In addition to individual commitments, each department or organization on campus can sign up to pledge as a team.
U Miami Sign Agreement with Zipcar, Bans Freshman Cars
The University of Miami (FL) has announced an agreement with Zipcar, a car-sharing program that allows members to reserve cars online or via phone or mobile device for an hourly rate. The new program was launched in conjunction with the University's recent ban on freshman cars.
U New Hampshire Distributes Free CFLs
The University of New Hampshire has announced plans to pass out 1,720 free compact fluorescent light bulbs to students living in UNH residents halls this fall. The CFLs are estimated to save the university $17,250 in energy costs. The CFLs for students will be divided among UNH's 23 residence halls and distributed door-to-door by hall directors in the first few weeks of the fall semester. All students who receive a CFL will also get an informational postcard outlining other ways to minimize greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption on campus and describing safety procedures for disposing of broken or burnt-out CFL or incandescent bulbs.
U New Mexico-Taos Constructing 500 kW Photovoltaic System
The University of New Mexico-Taos recently held a groundbreaking ceremony for a 500 kW photovoltaic solar panel system installation. The UNM solar array is part of a 1.1 MW photovoltaic system distributed among several sites in New Mexico. The project has an expected completion date of January 2009.
U Oregon Installs Solar Awnings
The University of Oregon has begun installing solar awnings on its Eugene campus. If the pilot program is successful, the awnings, which function to provide solar energy, passive cooling and daylighting, will be installed on other Oregon University System campuses as well.
USA Today Covers Green Campus Move-in Initiatives
The USA Today has published an article on green move-in initiatives on campuses in the U.S. The story discusses George Washington University's (DC) Green Move-in initiative, which focuses on recycling boxes, using less paper, and encouraging students to use re-usable moving containers, and the University of California, San Diego's newly renovated green residence hall. The article also mentions a green residence program that George Washington University will pilot this year.
U Tennessee Chattanooga Launches Recycling Program
The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga has launched a new recycling program on campus. The University partnered with a local recycling center to provide bins for the students, faculty, and staff to recycled plastic, paper, and aluminum cans.
Wilson Community College Opens Green Student Center
Wilson Community College (NC) has opened its eco-friendly Student Center. The building features a ground source heat pump for heating, a light-colored roof, and energy efficient windows and insulation. WCC hopes to achieve LEED Gold certification for the new building.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute Opens Green Residence Hall
Worcester Polytechnic Institute (MA) has opened its new green, 232-bed, apartment-style student residence hall. Temporarily named East Hall, the new residence hall features a green roof, a large number of windows to maximize the amount of natural light, dedicated storage for bikes, and 12 parking spaces reserved for hybrid or alternative fuel vehicles. WPI hopes the new dormitory will achieve LEED Gold certification.
13 New Campuses Sign Presidents' Climate Commitment
13 new institutions have signed the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment since the last update in AASHE Bulletin. In doing so, these campuses have committed to develop comprehensive plans for achieving climate neutrality. The new signatories are: E. Gordon Gee of Ohio State University, Barbara Snyder of Case Western Reserve University (OH), Bob Kerrey of The New School (NY), David B. Ashley of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, James R. Ramsey of the University of Louisville (KY), Steven G. Poskanzer of the State University of New York at New Paltz, Joseph L. Kennedy of the State University of New York at Canton, Dennis Dease of the University of St. Thomas (MN), Oscar C. Page of Austin College (TX), John W. Byrd of Simpson College (IA), Michael Alexander of Lasell College (MA), Gary Tollefson of Skagit Valley College (WA), and Judith Cardenas of Lansing Community College (MI). 565 college and university presidents and chancellors have now signed the Commitment.
17 Schools Selected to Participate in EcoCAR Competition
The U.S. Department of Energy, General Motors, and Natural Resources Canada has announced the 17 teams selected to participate in EcoCAR: The NeXt Challenge, a collegiate vehicle engineering competition set to begin in the Fall of 2008. EcoCAR will challenge university engineering students across North America to reengineer a Saturn VUE to achieve improved fuel economy and reduced greenhouse gas emissions, while retaining the vehicle’s performance and consumer appeal. Participating schools include Embry Riddle Aeronautical University (FL), Georgia Tech, Howard University (DC), Michigan Technological University, Mississippi State University, Missouri University of Science and Technology, North Carolina State University, Ohio State University, Pennsylvania State University, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology (IN), Texas Tech University, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, University of Victoria, University of Waterloo, University of Wisconsin, Virginia Tech, and West Virginia University.
Benedictine U to Celebrate 3 Years for the Environment
Benedictine University (IL) has announced plans to launch a three-year program entitled, "Years for the Environment," aimed at moving the campus from education and conversation into action. The effort will incorporate curriculum, speakers, events and community outreach. An array of environmentally-themed courses will be offered each semester. Many existing courses, particularly those in biology, humanities, religious studies, and anthropology, will incorporate environmental topics into their curriculum. Th
Boise State Named Best Workplace for Commuters
Boise State University (ID) has been named the "Best Workplace for Commuters" by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Transportation. The program recognizes institutions that value and support efforts to reduce traffic congestion, improve air quality and provide environmentally friendly commuting options to its employees and students. Notable programs that assisted in Boise State earning this recognition were the free bus and shuttle programs for students, faculty and staff;
Brevard CC Receives Recycling Award
Brevard Community College's (FL) 25 member Green Team has received Keep Brevard Beautiful's annual Recycling Award. The team has recycled more than 35 tons of paper on campus since the program's launch in September 2007.
California Campuses Receive Sustainability Awards
Many University of California and California State University campuses have received recognition for their sustainability efforts in areas such as building retrofits and operations, green buildings, sustainable transportation, and student sustainability programs at the Seventh Annual CSU/UC/Community College Sustainability Conference. The conference’s Best Practice Awards highlight successful and cost-effective projects on CSU and UC campuses that implement green building technologies, sustainable design strategies, and energy-efficient operations. Campuses that received awards include Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, UC Davis, CSU Channel Islands, UC Berkeley, Sonoma State University, UC San Diego, Fresno State University, CSU Monterey Bay, San Diego State University, CSU Chico, and Humboldt State University. Several Best Practices case studies have been posted online to showcase the award-winning projects.
Central College Receives Community Recycling Funding
Central College (IA) has been awarded $1,500 from the Marion County Community Foundation to promote a partnership with Pella Community Schools to purchase recycling bins for the 2008-09 school year. Central College is part of the Pella Community Schools' Green Team, a group of community members that help the school district to become more environmentally friendly. The recycling containers will be placed in various locations in district school buildings.
Colorado State U Pueblo to Install Solar Array
Colorado State University-Pueblo has announced plans to install a more than one MW solar electric system. The system is estimated to contribute more than 10 percent of the University’s electricity needs. Installation of the ground-based solar array will begin in July with full operation scheduled for late this fall. The University will purchase the electricity generated by the solar array from BP Solar, who will install and operate the system.
CU Boulder Launches Zero-Waste Program for Football Games
The University of Colorado at Boulder has announced the "Ralphie's Green Stampede" zero-waste and carbon-reduction program at Folsom Field, the University's football stadium. The goal is to move toward zero-waste at Folsom Field during the football season and invest in local carbon-reduction projects to match energy used to power the stadium, for team travel, and other football-related energy use. CU hopes to recycle or compost at least 90 percent of the waste generated at Folsom Field this year. Accordi
Dickinson College Hires Sustainability Director
Dickinson College (PA) has named Neil A. Leary as the first Director of its new Center for Environmental and Sustainability Education. Previous positions held by Leary include head of the Technical Support Unit of Working Group II of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, senior economist in the Office of Policy of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and assistant professor at Middlebury College, where he also served as acting director of the Environmental Studies Program. Leary holds master and doctoral degrees in economics from the University of Washington and a B.A. from Macalester College.
Drew U Hires First Sustainability Coordinator
Drew University (NJ) has hired Christina Notas as the school's first Campus Sustainability Coordinator. Notas will be responsible for spearheading the University’s green initiatives and fostering a culture of environmentalism among students, faculty, and staff. Notas, who holds a Bachelor of Science degree in environmental studies, is a recent graduate of the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry and an alumna of the New Jersey Governor’s School on the Environment.
Duke U Med Center Installs Green Roof
The Duke University (NC) has installed a green roof on its Medical Center entrance. The diamond-shaped patch of plants is a pilot project to help the University decide whether or not to install a green roof on the $596 million hospital expansion.
Georgian College to Build Sustainable Technologies Centre
Georgian College (ON) has received $6.5 million in funding from the Ontario government to complete upgrades on its Barrie campus. The funding will help the college build an 18,000 square-foot Centre for Sustainable Technologies, which will house new and existing construction and energy-related programming and skills training. Construction will begin by September and is expected to conclude prior to the fall 2009 semester. The Centre for Sustainable Technologies will create a total of 153 student workstations and include space for a Design Lab, High Voltage Electrical Lab, Surveying Lab, Materials Testing Lab, Industry-based Technical Reports Laboratory, Computer Lab and Innovative Technology Lab.
Harford Community College Building Receives LEED Silver
Harford Community College’s (MD) renovation of Joppa Hall has achieved LEED Silver certification. As a result of the LEED principles used in the renovation, Joppa Hall has reduced its energy consumption by 30%. Green features include a storm water management system that removes pollutants from the building and parking lot runoff; three green roofs; secure bike storage and changing/shower facilities; and designated carpool parking spaces. Additionally, 75 percent of the construction waste was recycled, healthy indoor air quality was carefully maintained during construction, and low VOC products were used.
Kennesaw State U Appoints Director of Sustainability
Kennesaw State University (GA) has named Robert C. Paul‚ professor of biology in the College of Science and Mathematics‚ as the institution’s first Director of Sustainability. In his new role‚ Paul will oversee environmentally sustainable operational and educational initiatives. Paul assumed his new role on Aug. 1. The position is part of Kennesaw State’s overall efforts to lessen its environmental footprint and educate its students‚ faculty, and staff about environmental responsibility and sustainability.
Michigan Tech Launches Ride Share Program
Michigan Technological University has launched an Online Rideboard. The new electronic ride-share program allows students, faculty, and staff to access an interactive map and find a ride or rider leaving Michigan Tech.
Pacific U Building Receives LEED Gold
Pacific University's (OR) Berglund Hall has received LEED Gold certification. Berglund Hall is the third building on campus to have received a LEED Gold rating. The new $12 million building is home to the College of Education.
Rockhurst U Purchases Green Computers
Rockhurst University (MO) has purchased 230 new computer workstations that are expected to last twice as long as PCs and will use 90 percent less energy than traditional desktops. The new computers, which are about the size of a VHS tape, will produce less heat, cutting down on air conditioning and electricity costs. The system calls for moving the software and storage from each individual computer to five powerful servers located in the campus data center. The Virtual Desktop Infrastructure will speed processing times, provide instant desktop recovery, and lessen the time spent on upgrades and repair. Once the system is fully implemented, Rockhurst plans to donate more than 200 CPUs to local nonprofit organizations.
Syracuse U Develops Carpooling Incentives
Syracuse University (NY) Parking and Transit Services has developed a new carpool program that provides parking for two or more University employees who commute to work together. To participate in the plan, all members of a carpool register their vehicles under one multi-vehicle permit, which will provide campus parking for one vehicle; the hanging permit is then transferred between the carpooling vehicles.
The College of St. Joseph Installs Green Roof
The College of Mount St. Joseph (OH) has installed a green roof on its library. The roof features 8,880 plants that were obtained locally. The Library’s green roof is designed to reduce heating and cooling costs, extend the lifespan of the roof membrane, and decrease storm water runoff and pollutants into storm sewers.
UC San Diego Increases Green Curriculum
The University of California San Diego has announced plans to offer more than 80 green seminars, workshops, and courses that cover sustainability issues this fall. Course topics will include global warming, consumerism, alternative energy, climate change and society, and corporate social responsibility. Nearly 200 courses with sustainability related content will be offered in total.
UNC Wilmington Installs LEDs
The University of North Carolina, Wilmington has replaced 150-watt lighting pole bulbs with twin 48-watt LED energy efficient bulbs. Additionally, the new lights at Wagoner Hall feature 24-watt LED fixtures. Overall, the University expects savings in energy of more than 50 percent over the previous lights.
U Portland Renovates Outdoor Plaza With Recycled Materials
The University of Portland (OR) has completed a 2,500 square foot plaza renovation using recycled materials. The grounds of the plaza were resurfaced with rubber bricks made from 100 percent recycled tires, and picnic tables made from recycled milk jugs were purchased for the newly renovated space.
U Southern Mississippi Hires Sustainability Officer
The University of Southern Mississippi has hired Larry Lee as Sustainability Officer. Lee will be responsible for establishing the University's new Office of Sustainability, which will focus on recycling, operations, and education. Lee will also focus efforts on an educational component called EcoEagle, with the goal of incorporating educational elements into the curriculum as well as implementing other activities for students and employees.
15 Colleges Complete North American Solar Challenge
15 colleges and universities have completed the 2008 North American Solar Challenge in which they designed and built solar cars that traveled 2,400 miles from Texas to Canada in 10 days. The University of Michigan finished in first place completing the race in 51 hours and 41 minutes. Principia College (IL) came in second followed by Bochum University of Applied Sciences (Germany), the University of Waterloo (ON), the University of Minnesota, the University of Calgary (AB), Missouri University of Science and Technology, Iowa State University, Red River College (MB), University of Arizona, University of Kentucky, Queen's University (ON), and Northwestern University (IL). Durham University and Oregon State University did not meet the required number of laps for qualifying, but were permitted to finish the race as non-competitive entries. 24 schools created their own cars, and 15 were able to finish.
3 Appalachian State U Students Create Wind Energy Documentary
Three Appalachian State University (NC) students have produced "Harvesting Wind: North Carolina's Alternative Progress," a documentary on the current debate over wind energy in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The video aims to raise awareness about and acceptance of wind energy, and includes interviews about wind energy and common misconceptions.
Alfred U Breaks Ground on Green Res Hall
Alfred University (CA) has broken ground on Ann's House, a new residence hall on campus. Green features of the 48-student, 15,000-square-foot building will include rooftop solar panels, a high-efficiency heating system, and low VOC materials.
Colorado Mountain College Fuses Sustainability into the Curriculum
Colorado Mountain College will offer several environmentally focused classes in its overall curriculum this fall. The College aims to embed environmental awareness into a wide range of subjects such as political science, philosophy, business, and English. So far, the school has identified 17 courses that will incorporate sustainability into the focus.
Congress Passes Higher Education Sustainability Act (HESA)
Congress has passed all provisions of the Higher Education Sustainability Act (HESA) as part of the new Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (HR 4137). HR 4137, expected to be signed into law shortly by President Bush, creates a "University Sustainability Grants Program" at the Department of Education. It will offer competitive grants to institutions and associations of higher education to develop, implement, and evaluate sustainability curricula, practices, and academic programs. This is the first new
CSU Monterey Bay Receives 2 Awards for Energy Conservation
California State University, Monterey Bay has received two awards for its energy conservation efforts. The first award came from the Monterey County Business Council's Public/Private Partnership. The University was honored for implementing projects that have resulted in significant energy savings. Projects included lighting retrofits, heating and ventilation retrofits and controls upgrades, resulting in an annual savings of 16 percent of the University's electricity consumption and 11 percent of natural gas consumption. CSUMB's second award was part of an Energy Efficiency Partnership Program among California utility companies. The University received a best practice award for a project to monitor and reduce energy consumption in nine campus buildings. An 11 percent savings in electricity use and a 24 percent savings in natural gas consumption were achieved in the nine buildings that were monitored by the centralized energy management system.
EPA Announces Partnership with Norfolk State U & Hampton U
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced a new partnership with Norfolk State University, Hampton University, and the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality that will enhance environmental research and teaching at the two universities and fund projects benefitting their local communities. The partnership establishes an EPA-founded program called LEAP -- Linking Environmental and Academic Programs -- at both universities. Through Norfolk State University's LEAP project, ninth grade students in the Hampton Roads area will have an opportunity to learn more about air pollution and environmental science. At Hampton University, LEAP will enhance a graduate curriculum and air quality research activities within the Hampton Roads area. The EPA also announced a $50,000 grant to Norfolk State University and a $49,995 grant to Hampton University for environmental education projects.
Georgia Tech Students Support Local Food
The Georgia Tech Students Organizing for Sustainability and the Office of Environmental Stewardship have signed "A Plan for Atlanta’s Sustainable Food Future: The Atlanta Local Food Initiative" (AFLI). The plan outlines goals and objectives designed to create a food system that provides safe, nutritious, and affordable food from local, sustainable farms and gardens. The initiative seeks to “enhance human health, promote environmental renewal, foster local economies, and link rural and urban communities.”