UW Stout to Offer Minor in Sustainable Design & Development
The University of Wisconsin-Stout will offer a new minor in sustainable design and development beginning fall 2008. The new minor has an interdisciplinary approach that integrates the natural and social sciences with technical course work associated with environmental issues, and will be offered through the department of engineering and technology.
Plan B 3.0: Mobilizing to Save Civilization
The Earth Policy Institute is offering a free PDF download of "Plan B 3.0: Mobilizing to Save Civilization," a new book by Lester Brown. The book, which could be used a textbook, covers topics such as deteriorating oil and food security, emerging water shortages, eradicating poverty and stabilizing population, and raising energy efficiency. The book may be downloaded by chapter or as a whole.
U System Maryland Appoints Vice Chancellor of Env. Sustainability
The University System of Maryland recently appointed the president of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Sciences, Don Boesch, as the Vice Chancellor of Environmental Sustainability. Boesch will remain president of UMCES while devoting efforts to overseeing a system-wide sustainability initiative to develop policies, practices, and programs. The Vice Chancellor is charged with helping to coordinate a system-wide effort to institute sustainable practices that reduce the University's impact on the environment.
Metropolis Magazine Covers Carbon Neutral Campus Efforts
Metropolis Magazine published an article in its February issue entitled "Carbon Neutral U" which highlights growing efforts by colleges and universities to reduce their carbon emissions. The article notes that "higher education has emerged as a thrilling proving ground for a sustainable society" and describes the activities of the Ivy Plus Sustainability Working Group.
Whitman C to Establish $100,000 Revolving Loan Fund
Whitman College (WA) recently announced its plan to establish a $100,000 revolving loan fund for sustainability initiatives. The fund will be launched during the 2008 – 2009 school year and will correspond with a call for proposals from students, faculty and staff. Half of the money will come from Whitman's life cycle program, which is mainly for building maintenance. The additional $50,000 will come from year-end surpluses. The College also plans to hire a current student or recent graduate as Sustainability Coordinator for the campus.
U Vermont Student Union Awarded LEED Gold
The University of Vermont's Davis Center was recently awarded LEED Gold certification. The first student union to receive a LEED Gold rating, the Davis Center features a natural chimney that evacuates smoke in the event of a fire without the use of a mechanical system, sensors that regulate electric lighting based on the amount of daylight entering the space, and air conditioning, heating, and ventilation regulated by occupancy sensors. Other green elements include waterless urinals, a green roof, and 175 sensors to provide data to students, faculty, and staff on energy used for heating and cooling, electricity, water usage, soil moisture, content, and temperature on the green roof. This data will soon be displayed on the web as well.
U Wisconsin-Stout Purchases Electric Vehicle
The University of Wisconsin-Stout recently purchased a zero-emission, no noise electric vehicle. The ZENN car will be used by Parking Services for security and safety patrol of campus parking lots.
U Victoria to Host Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions
The provincial government of British Columbia recently allocated $94.5 million to create the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions, to be hosted and led by the University of Victoria (BC). PICS will bring together top scientists, government and the private sector to develop innovative climate change adaptation and mitigation solutions. The collaboration also includes the University of British Columbia, Simon Fraser University and the University of Northern British Columbia.
U Buffalo Switches to 100% Recycled Paper
The University at Buffalo has a new Recycled Paper Purchasing Policy that will ensure that all the 8.5 by 11-inch paper purchased by the University will consist of 100 percent post-consumer content, chlorine-free paper. The new policy will cost the college approximately $10,000 extra per year.
Warner Pacific C Lowers Tuition
Warner Pacific College (OR) recently announced that, starting fall 2008, tuition and fees for incoming traditional undergraduate students will be 23 percent lower than the 2007 – 2008 school year. The move is intended to improve student access.
Harvard To Create Climate Task Force
Harvard University (MA) recently announced that President Drew G. Faust will soon appoint a task force to study how to reduce the University's greenhouse gas emissions. The recommendations of the task force will form the basis of a commitment to reduce emissions that will be unveiled in June 2008.
Macalester College Hires Sustainability Manager
Macalester College (MN) has hired Suzanne Savanick Hansen as its first Sustainability Manager. Hansen's responsibilities include coordinating sustainability efforts and making connections on campus, and she hopes to create a sustainability website. The new manager has already begun her duties by co-teaching a senior level Environmental Studies seminar that will complete a greenhouse gas inventory for the College.
Alternative Spring Break: Combating Climate Change
The University of California, Santa Barbara and Campus Progress invite applicants for Combating Climate Change, an alternative spring break in Santa Barbara, California from March 24 – 27, 2008. The alternative spring break will include trainings, workshops, and speakers from all aspects of the climate movement, including environmental justice, sustainability, and environmental policy. Located right on the beach, the alternative spring break will educate, train, and empower students to take action on the climate crisis in their own lives, on their campuses, and on a national scale.
Environmental and Social Issues Within Business Education
The Aspen Institute Center for Business Education has released February's "A Closer Look at Business Education" which discusses ways future business leaders are being introduced to Supply Chain Management and how some faculty are recognizing the opportunity to explore important social and environmental questions inherent within the subject.
Goshen College Rieth Village Awarded LEED Platinum
The Goshen College (IN) Rieth Village has been awarded LEED Platinum. Reith Village, an ecological field station for undergraduate environmental study at the Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center, features a passive solar design, cisterns for recycling rainwater, tulip poplar siding harvested locally, solar panels, and a wind generator. 2 cottages at the field station provide housing for up to 32 students and a third cottage serves as the initial classroom and office building.
Cleveland State U Opens Green Bistro
Cleveland State University (OH) recently opened a new restaurant that will use local products when feasible. Elements Bistro on Euclid will serve cheeses, locally produced sausages and pastas, and eventually will feature Ohio wine and beer.
Dissertation Proposal Award for Sustainability Business Research
The Center for Business Education at the Aspen Institute is accepting applications for its annual Dissertation Proposal Award. The purpose of this award is to identify innovative research in core business disciplines that considers the interdependence between business decision-making in a wider societal or environmental context. The recipient(s) will receive a cash stipend and will be recognized at an awards breakfast in New York City in the fall of 2008. Applicants must be doctoral students of business, or in a business-related discipline, and be in good standing with their educational institution. The deadline for application submission is Friday, March 28th, 2008.
Lewis & Clark College to Install Solar Panels
Lewis & Clark College (OR) recently reached an agreement with Honeywell International to supply the campus sports facility with solar power. Under the agreement, Honeywell will install solar panels on the roof of the Pamplin Sports Center and sell to the college the electricity produced by the panels. Lewis and Clark officials say that the power purchase agreement is the first of its kind for a college or university in Oregon. The panels are expected to generate more than 97,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity annually, produce enough power to meet approximately 15% of the electricity needs for the sports center, and cut carbon dioxide emissions by an estimated 1.8 million pounds over the course of the 20-year agreement. Lewis and Clark expects the solar installation to be completed by August 2008.
Farmingdale State C Purchases 6 Electric Vehicles
Farmingdale State College (NY) recently purchased six all electric vehicles to be used by the physical plant staff. The College plans to replace their older fleet vehicles with electric automobiles later this year and hopes to test an electric truck as well.
Pomona C Buildings Receive LEED Gold
The Lincoln and Edmunds buildings at Pomona College (CA) recently received LEED Gold certification. The buildings feature waterless urinals, high-efficiency lighting, water-efficient landscaping, partial bamboo flooring, and a photovoltaic system that provides 22.4% of the buildings' power.
Babson C to Install Wind Turbine
Babson College (MA) plans to install a residential-scale wind turbine on the school's campus as a demonstration project. The 1.8 kW turbine is expected to be operational before the close of the spring 2008 semester. It is estimated that the turbine will produce enough energy to supply roughly 60% of the annual energy needs at the school’s entrepreneurship gallery after planned lighting renovations are completed within the space. The project is a result of a proposal by a team of three graduate students. Officials say that Babson will be the first college in the greater Boston area to utilize wind power through an on-campus installation.
Dalhousie U Hires Sustainability Office Director
Dalhousie University (NS) recently hired Rochelle Owen as the Director of the Office of Sustainability. Her first tasks will be to develop a strategic plan for the office and to help draft a university-wide sustainability policy. Other duties include supporting, implementing, maintaining, and communicating campus-wide sustainability programs. Owens plans to focus on water use, electricity use, and eliminating paper coffee cups. She also plans to create a sustainability advisory board for the campus that will include faculty, students, and staff.
U Washington Expands Biofuel Program
The University of Washington Motor Pool is switching from B5 to B20 fuel, which includes 20 percent biodiesel. The University plans to use B90 fuel in the future. The change is part of the Green Fleet Initiative, a program which aims to reduce the institution's environmental footprint.
U Washington Begins Doctoral Biofuels Program
The University of Washington recently began its new doctoral program in sustainable energy that focuses on biofuel technologies. Students in the program will work on the engineering challenges of sustainable energy. The program is sponsored by the Integrative Graduate Education and Research Training award, which funds six interdisciplinary doctoral students for five years and requires the school to recruit students from Native American communities.
3 NY Schools Form Green Purchasing Consortium
Cornell University, Ithaca College, and Tompkins Cortland Community College recently helped to form the Finger Lakes Environmentally Preferred Procurement Consortium. The New York based consortium was created to help negotiate pricing for environmentally friendly cleaning products, paper, and office supplies. The consortium will attempt to purchase local products as well. Tompkins County, the City of Ithaca, the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce, and Tompkins-Seneca-Tioga Board of Cooperative Educational Services are also helped to form the consortium.
Occidental C Offers Green Alternative to Dry Cleaning
The Occidental College (CA) Urban and Environmental Policy Institute recently began a program that offers an on-campus professional environmentally friendly wet cleaning service. Wet cleaning is an alternative to dry cleaning that uses energy efficient computer controlled washers and dryers, nontoxic biodegradable detergents, and finishing equipment to safely clean garments that have a dry clean label. To kick off the green cleaning service, Occidental will be hosting a fashion show featuring green designers and an informational session about alternatives to toxic dry cleaning. The program is offered by the UEPI's Pollution Prevention Center and a local clothes cleaning service, Sunny Brite Natural Cleaners.
Wellesley College Increases Financial Aid
Wellesley College (MA) recently announced a new initiative in its financial aid policies which will replace loans with grants for students from families who have calculated annual incomes below $60,000 and will reduce loans by one-third for those with incomes between $60,000 and $100,000. Under the new plan, eligible students from families with higher incomes will continue to benefit from Wellesley’s low loan packages, which will continue to cap the four-year maximum debt at $12,825. The new initiative will increase Wellesley’s spending on financial aid to about $40 million per year, 80 percent of which comes directly from its endowment.
Macalester C Holds Green Light Bulb Contest
Macalester College (MN) recently held "The Light Bulb Switchout," a competition between freshman and upperclassmen to see who could replace the most four-foot florescent bulbs with higher efficiency bulbs. The 2,200 newly installed light bulbs are estimated to save the College up to $30,000 per year. The first-year students won the competition, switching 1,300 bulbs in one building. The old light bulbs were recycled by a local recycling company.
6 Institutions Receive Exemplary Community Service Award
Six colleges and universities recently received presidential recognition for extraordinary contributions to service in their communities in the second annual 2007 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. The University of Colorado at Boulder, the University of Pennsylvania, and Otterbein College (OH) received Presidential Awards for General Community Service. Syracuse University (NY), the University of Redlands (CA), and Chaminade University of Honolulu (HI) were recognized for Service to Youth from Disadvantaged Circumstances, a special focus area of this year's Honor Roll competition. In all, 528 schools were listed on the Honor Roll for their community service activities during the 2006-2007 academic year. This year, new Special Achievement Awards for outstanding service by minority serving institutions and community colleges were presented to California State University, Fresno, Lake Area Technical Institute (SD), Raritan Valley Community College (NJ), and Johnson C. Smith University (NC). In addition, the Honor Roll also recognized 127 schools as Honor Roll with Distinction members and 391 schools as Honor Roll members. The awards were presented by the Corporation for National and Community Service.
Stanford U Eliminates Student Loans
Stanford University (CA) recently announced a new undergraduate financial aid program that will eliminate the need for student loans. Under the new program, parents with incomes of less than $100,000 will no longer pay tuition. Parents with incomes of less than $60,000 will not be expected to pay tuition or contribute to the costs of room, board and other expenses. Students will still be expected to contribute their earnings from work during the summer and academic year. The plan will go into effect in fall 2008.
Indiana U Holds Recycling Bin Design Contest
The Indiana University Task Force for Sustainability is holding a contest for the best recycling bin design. The project is intended to raise awareness about the importance of student participation in a successful campus-wide recycling system. The top 10 winning designers will get the chance to paint their artwork on one of the recycling bins to be displayed throughout campus. The decorated bins will serve as the first-ever outdoor recycling receptacles.
Macalester C Subsidizes Bus Passes
Macalester College (MN) is offering a 50% discount on bus passes to faculty, students, and staff. The goal of the initiative is to encourage the Macalester community to use public transportation in order to reduce carbon emissions.
U College of the Fraser Valley Opens Green Building
The University College of the Fraser Valley (BC) recently opened the Trades and Technology Centre, a building that was built within the shell of an existing building using large portions of recycled material. The building also features energy-efficient electrical and mechanical systems.
U.S. House Passes Higher Education Sustainability Act
The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed the College Opportunity and Affordability Act, HR 4137, which includes all the provisions of the Higher Education Sustainability Act with a few minor amendments. The final higher education act will now be addressed in the conference between the House and the Senate. So far, Senators Kennedy, Dodd, Bingaman and Kerry have co-sponsored Senator Murray's Senate version of HESA, and are looking for more support. These Senators are asking for colleges and universities to contact their senators about the importance of HESA.
U System Maryland Launches Sustainability Initiative
The University System of Maryland has launched a new initiative to promote environmental stewardship and sustainable practices across the system's universities, research institutions, and regional higher education centers. Goals of the initiative include reducing energy consumption system-wide by 15 percent and greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2020, conducting audits of greenhouse gas emission for all USM institutions and using best practices to reduce these emissions, and developing a system-wide strategy for campus sustainability and energy efficiency, including green building guidelines and sustainability benchmarks for all new construction and major facility renovations. The chancellor's Environmental Sustainability and Climate Change Initiative will focus on developing policies, practices, and programs to support these goals.
Academic Programs in Sustainable & Environmental Engineering
AASHE had prepared a series of new resources on sustainability in engineering education. The resources include lists of undergraduate and graduate programs in sustainability and environmental engineering, as well as a list of academic centers focused on sustainability engineering. The resources are available only to AASHE members.
National Environmental Education Week 2008
Educators planning to teach ecology or other environmentally-themed lessons during the week of April 13-19 can gain national recognition for your efforts through National Environmental Education Week 2008. National EE Week promotes understanding and protection of the natural world by actively engaging students and educators in a week of environmental learning before Earth Day. As partners in EE Week, educators have access to standards-based environmental education lessons and activities, monthly electronic newsletters that highlight the latest EE curricula, professional development, and funding opportunities, and opportunities for online communication and knowledge-sharing with educators from across the country.
Furman U Receives Sustainability Grant
Furman University (SC) recently received a $250,000 grant to support environmental sustainability initiatives and stewardship. The grant will provide scholarship aid for students engaged in environmental projects on campus and in the community through a student fellowship program. The Fellows will be charged with promoting sustainable practices on campus, with includes the production of biodiesel fuel, the development of the organic garden, and the creation and maintenance of environmentally friendly living spaces. In addition to the fellowships, the grant will also go towards the completion of Cliffs Cottage, the new Southern Living Showcase Home on campus that will model green design, renewable energy, and sustainable products, processes and materials. The grant was awarded by The Bank of America Charitable Foundation.
Yale U Develops Sustainable Event Guidelines
Yale University (CT) has developed Sustainable Event Guidelines for campus events. The guidelines provide sustainable energy, waste, transportation, materials and food strategies to help reduce the environmental footprint of the occasion. Events will be awarded a bronze, silver, or gold sustainability rating depending on how many of the guidelines to which they adhere. The program was launched in an effort to make sustainability part of the campus culture, and was created by the Yale Sustainability Office, the Yale Sustainable Food Project, Yale Recycling, and Yale Catering.
U Puget Sound Offers Free Bus Passes
The University of Puget Sound's (WA) Transportation Task Force recently announced that it is distributing 75 free bus passes to members of the campus community in an effort to promote alternative transportation methods. The passes are available from February to April for three local bus lines. In exchange for the passes, commuters will share their bus-riding adventures via a blog for the duration of the program. The program is the result of a funding from the University's Sustainability Advisory Committee to purchase bus passes for faculty, staff, or students. One local transit operator, Pierce Transit, donated a matching number of passes to expand the program.
Middlebury C Switches to 100% Recycled Paper
Middlebury College (VT) recently adopted a policy to switch from 30 to 100 percent recycled content and chlorine free paper in all printers, copiers, and outsourced publications. The policy encourages the use of Forest Stewardship Council certified paper and calls for the highest percentage of recycled content suitable for jobs that cannot be printed on 100% PCW-PCF paper. The increase in cost is estimated to be $100 per month.