Purdue U Strategic Plan Features Sustainability
The Purdue University (IN) Board of Trustees has adopted a six-year strategic plan in which one of the strategies is to "Promote sustainability consciousness." The strategic plan also describes the incorporation of sustainability and environmental/ecological consciousness into campus design as a key priority.
AASHE Digest 2007 - Annual Review of Campus Sustainability
AASHE has released AASHE Digest 2007 , a publication that offers a comprehensive review of campus sustainability efforts from 2007. The 230-page report includes over 800 stories about higher education institutions leading the way to a sustainable future. It is organized into 24 chapters spanning education, research, campus operations, administration, and finance.
Case Western Commits to Corporate Social Responsibility
Case Western Reserve University (OH), the city of Cleveland, and Cleveland Clinic have made a joint commitment to corporate responsibility towards the environment, human rights, labor rights, and anti-corruption. The three organizations have become members of the United Nations Global Compact, an international initiative to promote responsible corporate citizenship. Cities, corporations, academic institutions, non-profit groups, and other organizations join the compact to promote corporate citizenship to make business part of the solution to the challenges of globalization. By joining, these organizations voluntarily take responsibility for the impact of their activities on customers, suppliers, employees, shareholders, communities, and other stakeholders, as well as the environment through sustainability and ethical business practices.
Join US Youth Network at the UN Climate Negotiations, COP14
The SustainUS Agents of Change program is now accepting applications for its delegation to the UN Climate Negotiations, the Conference of Parties 14, to be held in Poznan, Poland this December. COP14 will determine the future of international policy on climate change, and this is an opportunity for youth to make their voices heard. The SustainUS delegation, comprised of key leaders in the youth climate movement from various organizations and backgrounds, will have the unique opportunity to represent American youth at the COP. Delegates will work with each other and with international youth in advance of the conference to educate themselves, develop policy priorities, acquire skills in effective lobbying, and engage the broader youth population in a conversation about international climate policy.
Clemson U Awarded for Commitment to Green Buildings
Clemson University’s (SC) Habitat for Humanity chapter has been named Campus Chapter of the Year by Habitat for Humanity International. Its campus chapter was selected for being a leader in green building practices. Last year the chapter sponsored a design contest with Clemson’s Emerging Green Builders as a service-learning project for architecture, landscape architecture and construction science students. Students designed environmentally friendly houses, and the winning design, named “Green House,” was constructed nearby. The chapter now is working on a house that will apply for LEED certification.
Dalhousie U Switches to Green Cleaning Products
Dalhousie University's (NS) Facilities Management Department has begun using green cleaning products. The products, an all-purpose cleaner, a disinfectant and a degreaser, have been third-party approved with Canada’s Environmental Choice logo and the United States' Green Seal certification.
Oklahoma State U Completes Energy Upgrades
The Oklahoma State University Center for Veterinary Health Sciences has completed energy efficiency upgrades to five buildings that are expected to realize approximately $9 million in energy savings over the course of a 20-year performance contract with Johnson Controls, Inc. Based on a utility bill comparison, the project has already delivered more than $154,000 in operational savings during the installation period. The savings are a result of upgrades that range from glazing windows and installing lighting controls to retrofitting the buildings’ plumbing and air flow systems. Work began on the project in September 2006.
Colorado State U Pilots Smart Grid Technology
Colorado State University, in partnership with Spirae Inc, has developed the InteGrid Laboratory, which seeks to address challenges of taking intermittent wind power and turning it into a stable and reliable renewable resource. This "smart grid" project is being implemented in Denmark.
CFP: Climate Action Planning at US & Canadian 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 and Canada. 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 Texas at Arlington GHG Report
The University of Texas at Arlington has released a draft report of its first carbon footprint analysis. The report has been prepared for the President’s Sustainability Committee by an interdisciplinary student/faculty team through a summer course in the School of Urban and Public Affairs. It characterizes the university’s greenhouse gas emissions in 2005, forecasts emissions in 2010 and 2020, then proposes a framework for setting reduction targets and develops reduction scenarios based on those targets. The report, produced in a very short time frame, is being issued in draft form so that members of the committee and other interested parties can participate in reviewing it. Comments are invited.
Appalachian State U Prof Receives Winds Advocate Award
Appalachian State University (NC) Professor Dennis Scanlin has received the "Small Winds Advocate of the Year" award from the U.S. Department of Energy Wind Powering America program for his leadership in small-scale wind energy activities in Western North Carolina. Dr. Scalnlin is also a the Coordinator of the Appropriate Technology Program in the ASU Department of Technology.
Natl Recycling Coalition Announces Recycling Bin Grant Winners
The National Recycling Coalition and The Coca-Cola Company have announced the recipients of their Spring 2008 Recycling Bin Grant program. 23 of the 75 grant recipients were colleges and universities. Recipients were chosen based on a number of criteria, including where bins are likely to have the most impact on recovering beverage containers from the waste stream, ability of recipients to sustain their program in the future, and intention to support collection programs with recycling education and promotion.
3 NJ Campuses, SUNY New Paltz Donate Unwanted Items
Planet Aid held its first annual College Initiative this year, rescuing close 13,000 pounds of clothing and shoes. Rowan University, Montclair State University, Rider University, and the State University of New York in New Paltz students, faculty, and staff all participated in Planet Aid's event.
Iowa State U Increases Sustainable Food Purchasing
Iowa State University has completed its first year of the Farm to ISU program. Over the past year, ISU has spent approximately 10 percent of its dining budget on organic and local food products, which is 5 percent more than expected. 76 percent of dairy purchases, 0.2 percent of bakery goods and grocery items, and 3 percent of meat purchases were made through the Farm to ISU program last year, while 1.5 percent of the produce was local. Additionally, all of the honey was purchased locally, and some tea and spices were organic. ISU plans to continue and expand the program in the coming year.
Purdue U Installs Energy Efficient Supercomputer
Purdue University (IN) has installed a new supercomputer designed to use up to 80 percent less energy and be more effective in some situations. The system is designed for high performance computing used in research supercomputers, and its processors draw 600 milliwatts of power each, compared to 25,000 milliwatts in standard supercomputers.
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 .
Sustainability in Business – Educational Video
Arnold Creek Productions, Inc. has released Naturally Successful: Entrepreneurship that redefines the bottom line , a new DVD that explores entrepreneurship from the perspective of the triple bottom line: businesses committed to economic, social, and environmental measures of success. Eleven top experts, consultants, and authors offer insights on building a values-driven business, providing meaningful leadership, achieving results beyond profits, serving customers, thinking long-term, seizing opportunities in new and existing markets, creating a thriving business and embracing a new type of capitalism. They cite numerous examples to explain why companies that are embracing green practices are experiencing outstanding growth, higher profits, lower risk and stronger brand recognition. A preview of the video is available online, and the full version can be purchased for around $30.
U Waterloo Establishes Green Bus. Practices Research Chair
The University of Waterloo (ON) and Export Development Canada (EDC) have announced the creation of a new research chair, funded by EDC, to identify financial products and practices that will help companies engage in business practices such as socially responsible investing and integrate social and environmental performance measures into their business activities. The new chair will seek to identify tools companies can use to address environmental issues such as climate change and environmental sustainability in emerging markets. The EDC Chair in Environmental Finance, based in the University’s Centre for Environment and Business, will also help businesses identify new ways to commercialize "green" technologies and services as well as explore carbon financing and clean energy funds. The University will also hire an additional professor in a related field, to further expand its Centre for Environment and Business.
U Arizona Uses Ice to Cool Buildings
The University of Arizona has created the University Thermal Ice Storage Project, an award-winning chilled water production and distribution system that spends the evening and early morning hours freezing water that is then used to cool buildings across the main campus and at the Arizona Health Sciences Center. The system involves the use of water chillers, cooling towers, pumps and pipes that snake around the campus through underground pipes that connect the plants. The project can produce more than 900 tons of ice per hour and the pipes feed the melting ice, or cooled water, to campus buildings. The process moves the bulk of the UA’s electrical load from the hot daytime hours to the cooler nighttime hours. UA recently received the Energy Efficiency Leader in Education Award from Trane for being one of a few institutions to have such a project up and running. And, just recently, the UA partnered with the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers’ Tucson chapter to begin teaching engineering students about chilled water technology and other heating and cooling processes.
Furman U Opens Green Cottage
Furman University (SC) has opened its Southern Living Showcase Home, Cliffs Cottage. The Cliffs Cottage was built to be a model of environmentally responsible design, sustainable building techniques and materials, and energy-saving systems. The building features bamboo flooring, insulated windows, rooftop solar panels, a rainwater collection system, and organic and formal gardens. The cottage is currently open for public tours.
Duke U Residence Hall Receives LEED Platinum
Duke University's (NC) Home Depot Smart Home, a 10-person student residence hall for green living and learning, has achieved LEED Platinum certification. The building features a green roof, solar cells, and rainwater cisterns. The Smart Home was designed to be adaptable, environmentally sustainable and technologically integrated. In addition to being built with recycled and sustainable materials, Smart Home boasts a fiber-optic network with the fastest Internet access on the campus, about 40 gigabytes per second.
Appalachian State U to Install Wind Turbine
The Appalachian State University (NC) Renewable Energy Initiative has announced plans to install a 100kW community-scale wind turbine on campus. The turbine proposed for the project will stand 115 feet tall, will have a blade diameter of 66 feet, and is expected to produce 150,000 kilowatt hours of electricity annually. The organizers do not yet have a timeline for installation.
NYU to Pursue Re-use of Existing Buildings Rather than Build New
New York University President John Sexton and Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer announced that NYU, elected officials, and local community groups have agreed to a set of principles to guide the University’s future expansion. As outlined, NYU, which projects a need for 6 million square feet of space over the coming decades, will pursue re-use of existing buildings before developing new facilities and will actively pursue academic and residential centers outside the Washington Square area. In addition, the principles are designed to emphasize contextual development, mitigate the effects of construction, enhance community consultation, and support community sustainability, such as preservation efforts aimed at local retail businesses. As embodied in the principles, NYU will also engage in extensive community outreach for new projects, work to minimize negative effects of construction including noise and dust, and develop a relocation policy for legal residential tenants displaced by University projects.
Stanford to Establish Center for Advanced Molecular Photovoltaics
Stanford University (CA) has received a $25 million grant from the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology to fund Stanford's new Center for Advanced Molecular Photovoltaics. The center aims to make solar electricity at a cost that is competitive with coal plants by constructing solar cells that are more efficient and last up to 10 years longer.
Washington Post Features Article on Campus Sustainability
The Washington Post recently featured a front-page article on campus sustainability entitled, "Higher Learning Adapts to a Greening Attitude." The article discusses the increase in sustainability in the curricula at college campuses across the US, and mentions, in particular, the University of Maryland, the University of Virginia, Catholic University (DC), Goucher College (MD), the University of Oregon, and Johns Hopkins University (MD). The article also mentions co-curricular sustainability activi
New Blog for the Campus Sustainability Professional
Richard Johnson, the Director of Sustainability and the Associate Director for the Center for the Study of Environmental and Society at Rice University, has created a new blog entitled, "Greening the Campus: Inside the World of the Campus Sustainability Professional." Johnson's intention is to share insights and observations from the perspective of a campus sustainability professional and help to promote discussion and knowledge sharing within the professional community.
Michigan's Univ Research Corridor Announces Energy Seed Grants
The University Research Corridor, an alliance of Michigan’s three research universities, has announced its first seed fund grants to provide startup support for two “revolutionary but feasible” energy projects. The seed investments will help launch two collaborations for efficient development of cheaper forms of electricity and fuel, one involving the University of Michigan, Michigan State University, and Wayne State University and the other involving MSU and U-M. The U-M, MSU, and WSU project will work to develop more efficient and low-cost thermoelectric materials to be used for power generation and environmentally friendly heating and cooling systems. The MSU and U-M project will work to develop nano-biocarriers to rapidly and efficiently produce low-cost ethanol from switchgrass or corn stover (the leaves and stalks that make up about half of a corn crop).
U Colorado at Colorado Springs Students Approve Green Fee
Students from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs approved a $5 per semester fee to support the installation of solar panels on university buildings. The student-initiated statute is expected to generate more than $300,000 during its five-year duration. More than 76 percent of voting students voted in favor of the referendum.
NC State U to Establish 2 Professorships in Energy Engineering
North Carolina State University's College of Engineering has announced that it will receive a $1.25 million endowment gift from the Duke Energy Foundation to support workforce development, teaching, and research related to the generation and delivery of energy. The gift will create two named professorships, one each in nuclear engineering and electrical and computer engineering, and will establish an endowed K-12 educational outreach fund to promote the continued development and diversification of the future engineering workforce. The endowed professor of nuclear engineering will help develop nuclear energy technologies, while the other endowed professor will lead a multi-university effort to study the integration of renewable energy sources into the nation's electrical power grid.
DePauw U Building Receives LEED Gold
The DePauw University (IN) Janet Prindle Institute for Ethics building has received LEED-NC Gold certification. Located in the DePauw University Nature Park, the building was designed to minimize impact on the environment. The building features a white roof that reflects the sun and thereby reduces demand for air conditioning; awnings that serve to admit the winter sun for passive heating and shade the building from the summer sun; and rooms that are equipped with motion sensors which automatically turn off lighting in unused areas. Additionally, the structure was built using local limestone and locally harvested trees.
Furman U Library Awarded LEED Gold
The Furman University (SC) James B. Duke Library has been awarded LEED Gold certification. The newly renovated building also received the 2006 Sustainable Design Award from the Carolinas Chapter of the International Interior Designers Association.
Lifecycle Building Challenge 2 Student Competition
The American Institute of Architects, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the Building MaterialsReuse Association invite students and professionals to participate in the Lifecycle Building Challenge 2. The contest challenges participants to submit creative ideas or designs to advance cutting-edge design for adaptability, disassembly, and local reuse of building materials. This year's competition features Building and Innovation Categories and new awards for Best Greenhouse Gas Reduction, Best School, and Best Residential Designs. Teams of up to 5 contestants can enter. The registration deadline is July 31, 2008.
University Reform in an Era of Global Warming
Chet A. Bowers has published a book entitled, "University Reform in an Era of Global Warming." The book examines why many professors continue to rely upon the conceptual frameworks learned in their own graduate studies even though these frameworks were established before there was an awareness of environmental limits. Bowers also discusses the need to educate students in how to live less consumer dependent lives and how to introduce students to understand and to participate in the local cultural commons.
2 Northern Michigan U Res Halls Receive LEED Certification
Northern Michigan University's Meyland and Van Antwerp Halls have received LEED Certified and Silver ratings respectively. While renovating the two buildings, NMU recycled more than 250 tons of metal piping and wiring, used recycled and locally produced materials when possible, and reduced regulated water use by up to 60 percent by installing dual-flush toilets and low-flow showers and faucets. Additionally, the buildings' new furnishings were made with environmentally farmed, quickly renewable Malaysian hardwood and were manufactured in Indiana. The replaced beds were donated to RE-MEMBER, a nonprofit organization that supports residents in need in South Dakota. Other furnishings were donated to the town's Habitat for Humanity chapter.
Richland College to Build Green Science Building
Richland College (TX) has announced plans to build a new science building that will include special construction for harvesting sunlight, cisterns that irrigate rain water to other parts of the campus as well as interactive devices in restrooms that users control. Some building materials will be recycled, such as the carpet, and local vendors will be utilized as often as possible to minimize exhaust fumes from lengthy transports. The décor will even be eco-friendly and is to include a geology pit for a hands-on “field learning” for the students. Richland is striving for LEED Platinum certification.
U Idaho Installs Green Roof
The University of Idaho has begun a renovation project to install a green roof on its Student Union Building. The project will be nearly self-sufficient and will include a storm water run-off mitigation system that will collect and store run-off water. The run-off will have a higher water quality and will be stored in a series of 550-gallon containers that will be reused to water the plants on the roof in dry periods.
U New Mexico Implements 4-day Summer Work Week
The University of New Mexico has begun offering staff members the option of working a compressed workweek to decrease commuting costs and gasoline-use during the traditionally slower summer session. The program, available June 16 through August 15, 2008, will provide most full-time employees on main campus the opportunity to work a four-day workweek by extending their workday to 10-hour days.