Columbia U Pilots Program to Reward Recycling
Columbia University (NY) recently began piloting RecycleBank, a program that weighs recycling and pays the recycler for the amount recorded. Each student can obtain a RecycleBank card, and when they take their recycling to the closest kiosk, they swipe their card and collect points. These points can then be spent at participating local and national merchants such as ITunes and Chipotle. The program, which was designed by a Columbia graduate, was originally designed to be used in cities; it has now been modified to be used by campuses.
Presidents Climate Commitment Reaches All 50 States
With recent signings from college and university presidents in Mississippi, Nebraska, and the District of Columbia, the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment now has signatories in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. 20 institutions have signed the 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: Robert C. Khayat of the University of Mississippi, Martha Dunagin Saunders of the University of Southern Mississippi, Brian L. Friedrich of Concordia University (NE), Steven Knapp of George Washington University (DC), Cornelius M. Kerwin of American University (DC), Michael K. Young of the University of Utah, Kenneth E. Peacock of Appalachian State University (NC), Ann Weaver Hart of Temple University (PA), Cassandra Manuelito-Kerkvliet of Antioch University Seattle (WA), Gerald Pumphrey of South Puget Sound Community College (WA), Thomas Hellie of Linfield College (OR), Roy Nirschel of Roger Williams University (RI), Phoebe K. Helm of Hartnell College (CA), Jack Oharah of Edmonds Community College (WA), Juan R. Olivarez of Grand Rapids Community College (MI), Roy A. Church of Lorain County Community College (OH), Cliff L. Wood of Rockland Community College (NY), Carl E. Haynes of Tompkins Cortland Community College (NY), Sandra Kurtinitisof the Community College of Baltimore County (MD), and William G. Ingram of Durham Technical Community College (NC). 539 college and university presidents and chancellors have now signed the Commitment.
Washington U in St. Louis to Offer Occasional Parking Program
Washington University in St. Louis (MO) recently announced that they will debut the Occasional Parking Program starting in the Fall of 2008. The program is designed to provide an occasional, reduced-cost daily parking option for those who normally use an alternate mode (walk, bike, public transit and carpool) for their commute. The Occasional Parking Program will make a set number of discounted daily passes available annually for purchase by individuals enrolled in the program. WUSTL also offers a car sharing program, and provides each benefits-eligible employee and full-time student with a complimentary U-Pass, which allows the holder unlimited use of Metro buses and MetroLink as an alternative method of transportation to and from campus.
Oregon State U Announces Financial Aid Plan
Oregon State University recently announced that, starting in the Fall of 2008, the University will enable 10 percent of the Oregonian students to attend OSU free of charge. The Bridge to Success Program will pool federal resources with funds from the Oregon Opportunity Grant, the Campaign for OSU and redirected institutional monies to cover all tuition and fee costs for 1,500 in-state students. Additional funds will cover books and supplies for half of those students. Awards will be based on financial need and students’ ability to show satisfactory progress toward completion of degrees, including taking 15 credits each term. Participating students must also be eligible for both Pell Grant and Oregon Opportunity Grant awards.
Temple U to Establish Office of Sustainability & Hire Sustainability Dir.
Temple University (PA) recently announced that it will establish an Office of Sustainability in the office of the Vice President for Operations. A new director of sustainability will be appointed to integrate sustainable principles into Temple’s operational, academic and service functions. The director will work with students, faculty and staff to develop sustainable programs and activities, and to implement a comprehensive sustainability strategy.
Columbia U Trades Incandescent Bulbs for CFLs
The Columbia University (NY) Environmental Law Society recently launched the Student Lightbulb Brigade Project, an initiative that aims to reduce the collective carbon footprint of the Columbia University community by offering compact fluorescent light bulbs for the less efficient incandescent bulbs for free. The students hope to exchange 50,000 bulbs.
U Central Florida Establishes Dept of Sustainability & Energy Mgmt
The University of Central Florida recently established a Department of Sustainability and Energy Management within its Facilities and Safety division, to dedicate resources to improving energy and water efficiency and conservation on campus. This reorganization will build on the successes of UCF’s former Center for Energy and Sustainability. Plans for the new department include eco-friendly competitions among residence halls, a LEED silver certification for all new buildings policy, and a 20 percent reduction in energy consumption by 2010.
Academic Publisher Launches Green Chemistry Journal
Taylor & Francis, an academic publisher, recently began a new journal on Green Chemistry. Green Chemistry Letters and Reviews aims to accommodate the rapid growth in the number of papers published on the design and development of sustainable chemical processes and products. The journal features papers pertaining to research, education, and industrial implementation of green synthesis, separation, and purification processes, including the development and use of renewable feedstocks and degradable products. The journal's website will provide a space for readers to comment on and discuss the content of research papers with the authors themselves.
AASHE Campus Sustainability Leadership Awards
AASHE is now accepting applications for its 2008 Campus Sustainability Leadership Awards, to be presented in November at AASHE 2008: Working Together for Sustainability – On Campus and Beyond. Four Campus Sustainability Leadership Awards will be presented. The Campus Sustainability Achievement Award recognizes the institutions that have made the greatest overall commitment to sustainability as demonstrated in their governance, curriculum and research, operations, campus culture, and community outreach. Applications are due August 1, 2008.
Invitation to Become an AASHE 2008 Supporting Institution
In an effort to encourage strong student participation at its 2008 conference, AASHE is inviting colleges and universities to become Supporting Institutions. Supporting Institutions offer to cover the cost of participation in the conference for at least one of their students, and provide $250 to support the conference. In exchange, they will be recognized in the conference website, printed program, signage and other publicity materials.
Rochester Inst. of Tech. Sustainability Center Receives $2M Donation
The Rochester Institute of Technology (NY) Golisano Institute for Sustainability recently received a $2 million donation from Xerox Corporation to further the research of new sustainable technologies. As a new founding partner of the institute, Xerox will spread the $2 million over five years. RIT launched the Golisano Institute for Sustainability in 2007.
Point Loma Nazarene U to Build 450 KW Solar Array
Point Loma Nazarene University (CA) recently announced its plans to build a 450 kW solar energy system on its campus. The photovoltaic system is projected to produce 80 percent of the peak energy for six major PLNU buildings. Construction is set to begin in July of 2008. PLNU was able to finance the system through a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) provided by Solar Power Partners, Inc. (SPP). Under the PPA, SPP will own the solar system for 20 years and sell the clean energy generated by the system to PLNU at a cost below present utility rates. PLNU has no upfront capital costs for the system and will have fixed electricity rates for 20 years.
EPA Announces Winners of Campus Green Power Challenge
The US EPA has announced that, for the second year in a row, the Ivy League has been named the overall champion conference in the 2007-2008 College & University Green Power Challenge. Led by the University of Pennsylvania, the Ivy League purchased more than 220 million kilowatt-hours of renewable energy this year. In addition to the Ivy League, EPA's Green Power Partnership also recognized the leading green power purchases of 17 other conference as individual conference champions: New York University, Pennsylvania State University, Oregon State University, Colby College (ME), University of California, Santa Cruz, Western Washington University, University of Utah, Southern Oregon University, University of Central Oklahoma, Syracuse University (NY), Southern New Hampshire University, St. Mary's College of Maryland, University at Buffalo (NY), Oberlin College (OH), Duquesne University (PA), Lewis & Clark College (OR), and Rowan University (NJ).
Worchester Polytechnic Institute to Offer Env. Studies BA
Worcester Polytechnic Institute (MA) recently launched an interdisciplinary Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies in which students will focus on solving complex environmental problems, the technical aspects of environmental decision making, and the social aspect of environmental policy. The new major is designed to provide students with knowledge of a broad range of issues such as water management, carbon dioxide reduction, building greener housing by using less toxic materials, improving transportation planning in suburban areas, approaching issues of environmental justice, and more. The program will also engage students in fundamental principles of mathematics, natural science, environmental engineering, social science, and the humanities.
Westminster College Launches Bike Share Program
Westminster College (UT) recently launched a pilot bike share program. Westminster purchased five lavender bikes that have been made available for check out to all college students, faculty, and staff. The program is a result of a donation made by Chevron.
Survey of MBA Student Attitudes on the Business/Society Relationship
The Aspen Institute recently surveyed MBA students from 15 business schools about their attitudes towards the relationship between business and society. This is the third time in nine years that the Aspen Institute has completed the survey. This year's survey found that MBA students are becoming more interested in finding work that will contribute to society, are more concerned about creating value for the communities in which they operate, and are thinking more broadly about the primary responsibilities of a company.
Call for Papers: Climate Action Planning at US Campuses
The International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education (IJSHE) and the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) have announced a call for papers for a special issue of the Journal on climate action planning at campuses in the United States. Judy Walton, AASHE's Acting Executive Director, will guest edit this special issue. Submitted articles must be between 2,000 and 4,000 words in length. The closing date for submissions is August 29, 2008.
U Wisconsin – La Crosse Students Approve Green Fee
University of Wisconsin, La Crosse students recently approved a $5 per semester renewable energy and energy efficiency fee with 89 percent of students voting. After being passed by the Student Senate, a referendum was created for the Student Association election ballot. The Student Sustainability Fund will go towards installing solar hot water heaters and LED lighting, and investing in wind power.
Appalachian State U to Hold Benefit for Renewable Energy
Appalachian State University (NC) recently announced that it will hold a music festival to raise awareness and money for renewable energy. Music on the Mountain, to be held August 23, will be a day-long event featuring bluegrass, soul, and funky acoustic jams. The tickets, being sold for $30 - $40, will raise money for NC Green Power, High Country Conservancy, and Appalachian's Energy Center. The event will also feature a 'green village' with exhibits on renewable energy from the three agencies, and one of the stages at the festival will be powered by solar power.
List of Campus Bicycle-Share Programs
AASHE has published a new resource on campus bike sharing programs. The resource provides links to over 50 bike sharing and renting programs. This resource is accessible only by AASHE members.
Special Issue of Academic Matters on Campus Sustainability
The April issue of the Journal of Higher Education Academic Matters features campus sustainability. Articles include "Environmentalism and the responsibility of academia," "Universities in a climate of change," "Environmental sustainability on one university campus," and more.
Benefit CD for Energy Action Coalition Released
Green Owl Records recently released "The Green Owl Compilation," a benefit CD for the Energy Action Coalition. The CD is made up of unreleased tracks and videos from an eclectic group of artists including Feist, Must, Bloc Party, Of Montreal, and many others. 100 percent of the profits will be donated to support the people on the ground in the EAC while raising environmental awareness in our community.
City College of NY Hires Dir. of Sustainable Technologies Institute
The City College of New York has hired Dr. Sanjoy Banerjee as the Director of the Institute for Sustainable Energy Technologies and as faculty of The Grove School of Engineering as Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering. The Institute for Sustainable Energy Technologies is the successor to the Clean Fuels Institute, which had been studying the economic and environmental impacts of alternative energy sources. Professor Banerjee’s vision calls for the Institute to develop sustainable energy technology to generate electricity from renewable, but intermittent, sources as well as existing nighttime overcapacity, store it efficiently and deliver it on demand.
Unity College Pres. to Live in On-Campus Sustainable House
Unity College (ME) recently announced that it will soon build a sustainable house on campus that will serve as a single family residence for the president of the University, an on-campus meeting and entertaining space, as well as a classroom. Designed for "Net-Zero" energy use, the 1,930-square-foot 'Unity House' will achieve LEED Platinum standards, feature a photovoltaic solar panel array, and be a living classroom for college students. The house will be the second completed structure of the OPEN Protot
U Utah Unveils New Cogeneration Steam System
The University of Utah recently unveiled a new cogeneration steam system, which will supply 5 to 10 percent of the University's electricity needs and produce heat for part of the campus. The new system is estimated to save 63,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions from going into the atmosphere per year.
U Penn Increases its Wind Power Purchase
The University of Pennsylvania recently announced that it will increase its purchase of renewable wind energy credits during the next two years. The move will make the University the top consumer of wind energy among institutions of higher education across the nation, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The University will purchase an additional 80,000 megawatt hours per year, bringing its total wind-energy purchase to nearly 200,000 megawatt hours per year.
Caltech Installs 230kW Solar Facility
California Institute of Technology recently began installing a 230 kW solar array on top of one of its parking structures. Caltech officials believe that the new array will be the largest solar-energy facility in the city of Pasadena. The project will be financed and operated through a Power Purchase Agreement between the campus and Solar Power Partners. The City of Pasadena and Pasadena Water and Power have worked closely with Caltech to create the facility, and construction is expected to finish in August 2008.
Rochester Inst. of Tech. Announces Transportation Research Initiative
The Rochester Institute of Technology (NY) Laboratory for Environmental Computing and Decision Making recently announced a new program aimed at exploring the environmental, economic, and energy impacts of global and domestic freight transportation. The Sustainable Freight Transportation Research Initiative plans to help build tools and conduct research necessary for improving the environmental footprint from moving goods around the globe. The LECDM will work on projects such as developing a Geospatial Intermodal Freight Transportation tool that allows shippers and policymakers to identify the easiest ways to move freight throughout the country. This mapping tool allows for the analysis of moving goods from origin to destination and can identify the greenest routes, as well as the fastest and least expensive routes.
Caltech to Establish Environmental Science Center
California Institute of Technology recently received an $18 million endowment to establish the Ronald and Maxine Linde Center for Global Environmental Science. The new center will include chemists studying ozone-destroying reactions in the stratosphere, fluid dynamicists and physicists studying atmospheric and oceanic flows, biologists studying nutrient cycles, geologists studying evidence of the effects of past climates, and social scientists (including economists) and humanists evaluating how society and institutions can respond to global change.
UC Irvine Establishes New Environment Institute
The University of California, Irvine has established a new research institute dedicated to the study of how the environment and society interact. The UC Irvine Environment Institute: Global Change, Energy, and Sustainable Resources will bring together scientists from across campus to work on projects specific to these areas. For example, projects could include studying how climate change will alter public health and welfare; whether people will accept the living patterns of green cities; and the environmental impacts of new energy technologies. The institute will award seed grants on a competitive basis to teams of UCI researchers from diverse schools and departments who design and collaborate on projects. Priority will be given to projects spanning scientific research, technological innovation, and/or societal response. In addition, UCI will dedicate eight positions over the next three years for new faculty members who will broaden its environmental expertise.
Dartmouth College Hires New Sustainability Manager
Dartmouth College (NH) recently hired Kathy Fallon Lambert as the new Sustainability Manager. Lambert, who is scheduled to take office in August 2008, will help the College develop a strategy to integrate sustainability principles and practices into Dartmouth's operations and culture. The new Manager hopes to develop and build more student environmental programs, including expanding Dartmouth's student orientation programs to include information about sustainable living.
U Delaware, UW-La Crosse, Moravian College Sign Declaration
The University of Delaware, the University of Wisconsin at La Crosse, and Moravian College (PA) recently signed the Talloires Declaration. The Talloires Declaration is a 10-point action plan for incorporating sustainability and environmental literacy in teaching, research, operations and outreach at colleges and universities. It has been signed by over 350 university presidents and chancellors in over 40 countries. In connection with the Talloires signatures, the UD President simultaneously signed the American College and Universities Presidents Climate Commitment, and Moravian College announced a $40,000 endowed fund to support the Sustainability Task Force, a group consisting of students, faculty, and staff working together to promote environmental issues.
The College of William & Mary Opens Campus Garden
The College of William and Mary (VA) Student Environmental Action Coalition recently started an on-campus garden. The garden was plowed and mulched in the fall of 2007, and students started seedlings in February. Campus Grounds gave the students the plot of land and allowed the students to use departmental garden tools. The garden also includes a compost bin in which Dining Services puts food daily. The garden is a result of SEAC, Dining Services, and members of the College's gardens and grounds division. Eventually, SEAC hopes to start a campus and community educational farm, teaching about sustainable agriculture and the farming process.
Higher Education Goes Green Website
The American Council on Education has launched, "Higher Education Goes Green," a website that offers news and videos on green campus initiatives. The site also provides a list of campus sustainability websites.
Invitation to Comment on Campus Sustainability Rating System
AASHE is inviting feedback from the campus sustainability community on the latest draft of the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment, and Rating System (STARS). AASHE intends for STARS to provide a standardized system for tracking information about sustainability performance and to enable better information sharing about campus sustainability practices. The public comment period ends on May 9, 2008.
U Mary Washington Campaign Saves Energy
A University of Mary Washington (VA) student-led environmental campaign has saved an estimated 197 metric tons of carbon dioxide from going into the atmosphere as a result of a shift in energy-saving attitudes and behaviors on campus. Results of a survey showed that students wasted the most energy when taking long showers, leaving computer equipment on when not in use, and running fans and air conditioning units when no one was in the room. The University's energy services company, NORESCO, then designed and provided training for resident assistants to educate others about changing these three specific behaviors. Resident assistants then launched a campaign to change attitudes and behaviors by talking with their residents, modeling the behaviors, and posting flyers to remind students to conserve energy, among other activities. NORESCO plans to expand the program to other colleges and universities.
Iowa State U Building Awarded LEED Silver
Iowa State University was recently awarded LEED Silver certification for Morrill Hall, a 115 year old building that received $10 million in renovations. 27 percent of construction materials were manufactured within 500 miles of the building, 88 percent of the building's structure and shell were kept and rehabilitated, and 18 percent of the new construction materials contained recycled materials. Morrill Hall is the first building at ISU to receive green building certification.
Rochester IT Dedicates Green Building
Rochester Institute of Technology (NY) recently dedicated its new College of Applied Science and Technology building, RIT's first green structure on campus. The building collects rainwater from the roof and uses the water to flush toilets in the restrooms, reduces energy use by approximately 21 percent, and has a 300 square foot green roof.
AASHE Student Sustainability Leadership Awards
AASHE is now accepting applications for the 2008 Student Sustainability Leadership Award, to be presented in November at AASHE 2008: Working Together for Sustainability – On Campus and Beyond. The Student Sustainability Achievement Award honors an undergraduate student from an AASHE member institution who has demonstrated outstanding leadership in promoting campus sustainability. Applications are due August 1, 2008. The Student Sustainability Leadership Award includes a $750 prize. In addition, the winner of this year's award will be featured in Sustainability: The Journal of Record .
St. Cloud State U Unveils Biofuels Bus
St. Cloud State University (MN) recently unveiled a bus powered by 80 percent recycled vegetable oil and 20 percent diesel fuel. The Husky Fried Ride uses approximately 150 gallons of vegetable oil per week while classes are in session, and is operated by the city bus system on the university park-and-ride routes. The vegetable oil used in the Husky Fried Ride is obtained from the university deep fryers.