Mercyhurst College Passes Student Green Energy Fee
After collecting 1,000 student signatures, Mercyhurst College (PA) has passed a Student Green Energy Fee that will collect $5 from every student each term to finance sustainable initiatives on campus. Project proposals will be accepted from students, staff and faculty members.
CA State University System Receives Energy Efficiency Grant
The California State University system has received $400,000 from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to initiate energy efficiency projects on campuses that were nearly cancelled after state funding cuts. Through the Energy Technology Assistance Program, campuses at Dominguez Hills, Fullerton, Long Beach, Pomona, San Diego and San Francisco will implement energy-efficient measures including smart lighting for parking lots and wireless air conditioning controls. The system expects to save more than $200,000 in annual utility costs.
Colo State U Receives $44.5 Mil Grant for EcoCAR 2 Competition
To aid its progress in the three-year national hybrid/electric vehicle design competition EcoCAR 2, Colorado State University has received $44.5 million worth of in-kind software from Siemens AG. Designed to teach students to manage large, complex projects, the software will steer a 40-student team that is working to build a fuel-cell vehicle for the competition.
Institutions Invest $65 Mil for Green Revolving Fund Challenge
The AASHE Bulletin has learned that a total of $65 million has been committed to campus green revolving funds as part of the Sustainable Endowments Institute's (SEI) Billion Dollar Green Challenge. The announcement will be made during the challenge's official launch on the main stage of the AASHE 2011 conference today. Harvard University (MA), Stanford University (CA) and Arizona State University are among 33 institutions that joined the challenge's Founding Circle. In collaboration with AASHE and the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment, the challenge encourages colleges and universities to invest a combined total of $1 billion in self-managed green revolving funds to finance energy efficiency improvements and provide an ongoing source for future conservation upgrades.
Iowa State U Receives $25 Mil Grant for Biofuels Program
Iowa State University has received $25 million in federal grants to develop a regional biomass production system for advanced transportation fuels derived from native perennial grasses. The comprehensive study will look at the effort’s broader economic and environmental impact. The university will work with the University of Washington, Washington State University, Louisiana State University and the University of Tennessee on the five-year project.
Fed Officials Announce $500 Mil for CC Job Training
To help dislocated workers shift to new careers, the U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Department of Labor have announced that 32 community colleges and consortia will share $500 million for job training and workforce development. The grants are designed to work in tandem to increase opportunities for the unemployed with the president's recently proposed American Jobs Act, which would provide $5 billion to renovate community colleges.
Dickinson College Receives $1 Mil Gift for Greenhouse Project
Dickinson College (PA) has received a $1 million gift to fund a new research greenhouse on campus. The 1,400-square-foot facility will include three isolated research zones, a general use greenhouse area, a preparation potting area and climate-controlled laboratories. The greenhouse is expected to have a transformative effect on sustainability education, interdisciplinary learning and the college’s science curriculum.
U Nevada Las Vegas Receives $500K for Renewable Energy Programs
The University of Nevada, Las Vegas has received a $500,000 gift from NV Energy to enhance its renewable energy educational programs. The gift will fund four $26,000 graduate-level renewable energy assistantships and support a new graduate certificate program in renewable energy. Funding will also go toward existing renewable energy graduate programs and student outreach activities.
Yale U Receives $25 Mil to Open Energy Sciences Institute
Yale University (CT) has received $25 million from the Farallon Capital Management LLC founder and his wife to help open an Energy Sciences Institute. The university will hire new faculty members to conduct research on renewable fuel sources in 40,000 square feet of laboratory space at its West Campus.
NSF Awards $20 Mil to Oregon Green Chemistry Center
The Center for Sustainable Materials, a collaboration between Oregon State University and the University of Oregon, has received a $20 million grant from the National Science Foundation to develop greener chemical processes. The grant will be used largely to fund graduate student work through the center and expand the development of water-based processes that are of interest in electronics and renewable energy materials manufacturing. The center joins the National Science Foundation’s Centers of Chemical Innovation program, which aims to support a new, greener chemical industry in the U.S. through university research.
Obama Proposes $5 Billion for Community College Renovations
Among President Barack Obama's proposals to revive a stalling economy during his speech to a joint session of Congress this month is $5 billion to bolster the infrastructure at community colleges, reports a recent Chronicle of Higher Education article. The money would go toward renovation and upgrades to make use of new technologies and to become more energy-efficient. The president's proposed American Jobs Act would cost more than $400 billion total, to be paid for through spending cuts identified by the bipartisan deficit-reduction committee.
Madison Area Technical College Receives Green Grant
Madison Area Technical College (WI) has received a $10,000 Thermo Fisher Scientific INSPIRE Grant to support student participation in its "Renewable Energy for International Development" course. The coursework examines energy and economics in developing countries with special consideration toward renewable sources. With eight weeks of online instruction and 10 days of hands-on work in Costa Rica, students design and implement renewable energy systems that can be applied to developing countries. The grant will provide six $1,500 scholarships and a $1,000 stipend.
Unity College Receives $10 Mil Toward Sustainability Efforts
Unity College (ME) has received a $10 million gift from an anonymous donor toward its environmental and sustainable living mission, tripling the size of its endowment. "Climate change is probably the biggest challenge that...we'll be facing in the 21st century and beyond," says Robert Constantine, vice president for college advancement, who adds that the gift will allow the school to add more sustainability science student and faculty resources including field trip opportunities.
U North Carolina to Use Reserve Funds Toward Sustainability
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has announced plans to spend $500,000 from a reserve fund to improve sustainability and enhance energy conservation on campus. The university will focus on improving aging campus facilities to be more energy efficient. The funds can go toward any energy conservation projects, and university officials are currently working on project proposals.
Northern Arizona U Receives $1.5 Mil for Enviro Science Chair
Northern Arizona University has received a $1.5 million endowment gift to create a chair of environmental science and policy for the Southwest. Tom Sisk, professor of ecology and founder of the university's Lab of Landscape Ecology and Conservation Biology, is the first appointment to the position. The Charles Olajos and Ted Goslow Chair, a gift from alumna Marcey Olajos, supports interdisciplinary work linking scientific research and public policy.
U Vermont Receives $30K for Renewable Energy Study
The University of Vermont has announced that it will receive a proposed $30,000 grant from Central Vermont Public Service (CVPS) to fund a study to improve the energy production of manure-based methane. Methane is the energy source for the CVPS Cow Power initiative. The study will analyze microbes that produce methane in an effort to improve the cost-effectiveness of farm methane energy systems.
Yale U Awards Microloans to 3 Campus Sustainability Projects
Yale University (CT) has chosen three campus projects to be supported by the Yale Sustainability Microloan Fund in the coming year. The fund promotes creative ideas that make the university a more environmentally and financially sustainable place by providing small loans for projects with short payback periods. Thin-film photovoltaic arrays, consumer-level smart grid technology and high-efficiency lighting installations are features of the three winning projects.
U California Creates $157 Mil with 'Working Smarter' Initiative
The University of California has created $157 million in system-wide administrative efficiencies over the past year through its Working Smarter initiative, which is on track to achieve $500 million in positive fiscal impact over five years. The initiative was launched last July as part of a strategy for coping with ongoing declines in state financial support. It aims to improve and streamline UC's administrative operations, while also producing $500 million in savings, revenue generation and other positive fiscal impacts. The $157 million figure reflects cost savings and new revenue produced during the 2010-2011 fiscal year. Some highlights include its risk management program, which saved more than $82 million, and the university's Statewide Energy Partnership program, which resulted in $25 million in savings last year.
NSF Solicits CC Feedback about Grant Application Challenges
To broaden its impact among two-year colleges, the National Science Foundation (NSF) recently asked community college educators to explain the challenges they face when applying for grants and to suggest emerging issues that NSF should consider funding. NSF convened a meeting in June of about 300 community college educators in partnership with the American Association of Community Colleges. Connecting community college technician education programs with university transfer programs and improving students' college readiness were among the key science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) issues that participants suggested for additional NSF support.
Southern Illinois U Carbondale Selects Green Fund Projects
Southern Illinois University Carbondale has selected 10 projects to receive a total of $59,201 from its Green Fund this summer. The fund is a student-led initiative that assesses students a $10 green fee each semester toward projects that promote energy efficiency, the use of renewable energy and campus sustainability. The projects selected include installing recycling bins and rechargeable door openers, enhancing sustainability research and outreach efforts, and encouraging the use of locally grown foods.
Central Carolina CC Receives Grant for Renewable Energy Programs
Central Carolina Community College (NC) has been awarded a $30,000 grant for its green building and renewable energy programs. The Progress Energy Foundation grant will be used to support the establishment of two laboratories in the college’s Sustainable Technologies Lab Building. The lab will include workstations in solar photovoltaic and solar thermal technologies, as well as weatherization stations and green building materials demonstrations. It is designed to feature a mock home shell to demonstrate advanced framing techniques, envelope design and required thermal and air barriers. Students will have the opportunity to work on photovoltaic and solar thermal systems, testing equipment and monitoring system efficiencies.
Indiana U Announces Sustainability Research Grant Projects
The Indiana University Office of Sustainability has announced the recipients of its Sustainability Research Development Grants for the 2011-2012 academic year. Two teams of faculty and graduate students will explore conditions for the successful implementation of low-carbon distributed energy programs in developing countries, and the use of policy tools to promote protection, conservation and development of the urban tree canopy. Each project will receive $15,000 that can be used for graduate fellowships, faculty research fund awards or summer faculty fellowships. Recipients are expected to develop new, collaborative lines of research that have the potential to grow into externally funded research projects.
U Montana Receives $250K Toward Biomass Boiler Project
The University of Montana has received an additional $250,000 grant from the U.S. Forest Service to help with its plans to develop a biomass boiler project on campus. The grants awarded by the U.S. Forest Service are designed to help projects that are attempting to find ways to turn the woody material taken from forests into energy. Several tons of biomass is generated each year from projects including wildfire prevention and logging operations.
Dept. of Energy Allots $30 Mil Toward Energy Efficiency Training
The U.S. Department of Energy has announced the availability of more than $30 million to train undergraduate and graduate engineering students in manufacturing efficiency to help them become the nation's next generation of industrial energy efficiency experts. Through the Industrial Assessment Center program, university teams across the country will gain practical training and skills by helping local companies and factories reduce energy waste, save money and become more economically competitive.
Manhattan, Queens College Awarded NYC Green Infrastructure Grants
Manhattan College and Queens College recently received funding from the New York City Department of Environmental Protection's for their innovative methods to manage stormwater runoff. A total of 15 awardees - ranging from private property owners, businesses and nonprofit organizations - will share approximately $3.8 million to build green infrastructure projects that will reduce combined sewer overflows and improve water quality in New York Harbor. Manhattan College was awarded $420,125 to retrofit two parking lots with porous concrete, which will allow rain to seep to underlying layers of gravel and other substrate instead of running into the sewer system. The system will manage more than one million gallons of stormwater per year. Queens College received $375,000 to retrofit three different areas on campus to infiltrate stormwater runoff, managing more than 707,000 gallons of stormwater per year through the use of porous concrete and rain gardens that will infiltrate and retain water using native plants and trees.
Santa Clara U Receives $1.3 Mil for Green Energy Scholars Program
Santa Clara University’s (CA) School of Engineering has received a donation of $1.3 million to help create a green energy scholars program. The donation will help the university launch the Latimer Engineering Scholars Program in the 2011-2012 academic year to support teaching and research in sustainable energy. Five students will be selected to receive education on renewable energy, focusing initially on photovoltaic technology and then expanding to other areas as the program grows.
DePauw U Receives $15K for Eco Rep Outreach Program
DePauw University (IN) has been awarded a $15,000 grant to initiate a program that will place two student Eco Reps in each first-year residence hall. The aim is to connect individual behaviors to environmental stewardship, promote environmentally sound living and have the reps act as liaisons to the greater community. The university was one of five Indiana independent colleges selected as recipients of the 2011 Ball Brothers Foundation Venture Fund.
Dept. of Energy Awards Energy-Efficient Lighting Research Grants
Arizona State University and the University of Rochester (NY) have received funding from the U.S. Department of Energy as part of a research initiative to develop new energy-efficient lighting products and expand domestic manufacturing capacity. The universities will focus on filling technology gaps in LED and organic light-emitting diodes (OLED) development, improving scientific knowledge and providing performance data for these technologies.
Mohave Community College Receives $150K Solar Energy Grant
Mohave Community College (AZ) has been awarded a $150,000 grant to build a solar energy system. The grant, awarded by Mohave Electric Cooperative, consists of $50,000 provided by the cooperative’s Renewable Energy Program and $75,000 in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding. If the project is approved by the college’s governing board, construction of the solar array is slated for a September completion. The system is expected to provide 5 percent of the campus’ electric power.
U Vermont Announces Clean Energy Fund Projects
The University of Vermont's Office of Sustainability has announced new campus clean energy projects selected for funding in the 2010-2011 funding cycle. Composed of undergraduate and graduate students, staff and faculty, the Clean Energy Fund committee allocated up to $234,050 to seven projects chosen from 68 entries. These projects include a campus-wide renewable energy feasibility study and strategic plan; a clean energy internship program; funding for a series of public lectures and events; a Green Labs energy conservation program; and two preliminary studies to support the installation of energy-saving revolving doors on campus and additional rooftop solar photovoltaic panels.
College of William & Mary Announces Green Fee Awards
The College of William & Mary’s (VA) Committee on Sustainability has announced its spring 2011Green Fee Project Awards. The 10 projects selected for funding include bike commuting outreach, reusable bags for incoming students, floating treatment wetlands, plastic bag recycling bins and water bottle refill stations. The projects were funded by the student green fee, a $15 per semester fee totaling about $210,000 annually.
Cornell, Northwestern Host Int'l Impact Investing Challenge
Cornell University's (NY) Johnson Graduate School of Management and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University (IL) recently hosted the first International Impact Investing Challenge. The invitation-only pitch competition asked students to design investment vehicles that create sustainable impact and are large enough to attract institutional investors, which distinguishes impact investing from traditional socially responsible investing. A team from Kellogg won first place for its Grain Fund Depot, a real estate investment trust with a focus on building grain storage facilities and renting that space to small farmers in India.
Hartnell CC Receives $900K Clean Energy Grant
Hartnell Community College (CA) has received $900,000 from the National Science Foundation to fund the Salinas Valley Consortium for sustainable energy, education and research. The grant will be used to prepare engineers and technicians to address the problems of efficient energy use with a minimal carbon footprint. A key component of the project will also be a sustainable energy laboratory, micro-grid and test bed that will give students the opportunity to do experiments on generating, monitoring and storing energy.
U Albany Receives Renewable Energy and Economic Development Grant
The University at Albany’s College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (NY) has received a $225,000 Renewable Energy and Economic Development grant. Funding presented by the National Grid will be used to develop, install and demonstrate a Photovoltaic Control and Monitoring Center. The center will enable gathering of research data that will provide designers, architects and installers with critical feedback to accelerate the construction and integration of roof-mounted solar systems. The university will partner with EYP Energy and Alteris Renewables to establish the center, which is part of a larger $1.35 million solar demonstration initiative that will evaluate and compare state-of-the-art, thin film-based solar photovoltaic technologies as a means of accelerating the use of clean energy technologies.
U California Berkeley Awards TGIF Grants
The University of California, Berkeley's The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) has awarded a total of nearly $248,000 to 15 campus sustainability projects. Winning projects include the institution of composting options in campus buildings, a campus bicycle initiative and green certifications for student groups. This year's awards will also fund 32 new green student internships and various education and behavior change initiatives. Since its inception, TGIF has awarded a total of $956,000.
U California Santa Barbara Announces TGIF Grants
The University of California, Santa Barbara's Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) Grant Making Committee has announced its grant recipients for the 2010-2011 funding cycle. Composed primarily of undergraduate and graduate students, the committee received 37 applications for various campus sustainability projects from students, staff and faculty, and selected 18 projects to receive awards totaling $177,080. Projects include the construction and operation of a student-owned Student Food Collective Sustainable Food Cart; the conversion of a campus theater's halogen lights to energy-efficient, low-wattage LED fixtures; and a cover on the campus pool to prevent heat from escaping and water from evaporating during non-operation hours that is expected to cut energy costs by $48,750 per year.
U Illinois Chicago Receives $15K Federal Grant for Seed House
The University of Illinois at Chicago's Hull-House Museum has received a federal grant of more than $15,000 to open a public heirloom seed library to provide free, regionally adapted seeds to urban farmers and gardeners. The public can apply for library cards to obtain seeds if they agree to plant the seeds, nurture the plants and return some seeds from the next generation at the end of the season. The museum is one of 14 national recipients of the Institute of Museum and Library Services' new Sparks! Ignition grants. The program funds innovations that use time and money most productively to expand library and museum services.
SUNY ESF Receives Grant to Produce Biofuel from Wood
Scientists at the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry have begun researching ways to turn locally produced wood into sustainable biobutanol. Researchers are experimenting with different strains of bacteria that can ferment sugars extracted from wood into biobutanol that can be pumped into automobile gas tanks. Biobutanol is one of a handful of fuels that can be produced from wood sugars and is considered to be more efficient than ethanol in producing energy, and easier to add to the existing gasoline distribution infrastructure. The research is supported by a $400,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Energy and $75,000 from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority.
U Maine Fort Kent Receives $500K Grant for Biomass Boiler System
The University of Maine at Fort Kent has received a $500,000 grant from the Maine Department of Conservation to convert the oil heating system for the two largest campus buildings into a biomass system. The system will provide heat for 1.75 acres of floor space and is expected to save the campus nearly $1 million in heating costs in the next decade. The entire project will cost $858,000.
Western Washington U Announces Green Fee Recipients
From a new solar array to water bottle refilling stations, Western Washington University has announced the campus sustainability projects slated to receive funding from its Green Energy Fee grant program. Students pay $21 each academic year for the Green Energy Fee and the majority is used to pay for renewable energy credit. The money left over is used to fund the Green Energy Fee grant program.
Indiana U-Purdue U Indianapolis to Fund Sustainability Projects
Nine sustainability projects on the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) campus ranging from water bottle fill stations to sculptural bike parking have received grant support from Greening IUPUI. The 2011 grant proposals marked the third round of Greening IUPUI grant awards. The grants fund student, faculty and staff-led initiatives that plan to “green” the university by advancing its sustainability principles.
U California San Diego Receives $1.4 Mil for Energy Research
The University of California, San Diego has received a $1.4 million grant from the California Energy Commission’s Public Interest Energy Research. The funding will accelerate the development and deployment of renewable energy technologies for Californians. The university plans to boost solar forecasting research, support the development of solar powered electric vehicle charging stations and solar integrated energy storage systems on campus, and improve information technology architecture with grid operators.
U California Santa Cruz Carbon Fund Selects Green Projects
The student-run Carbon Fund at the University of California, Santa Cruz has selected nine staff and student projects for funding. Each project is community-based, requiring cooperation between students, staff and community members. Projects will include a “Take Back The Tap” pilot program, a water conservation system, the installation of a solar panel and wind turbine at the Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf, energy-efficient lighting in parking lots, a certification program to make campus staff offices more ecologically friendly, and educational programs to help reduce water use throughout the region. The Carbon Fund receives money from a student-approved ballot initiative that raises money through a $3 per quarter student fee.
U Hawaii at Manoa Biofuels Project Wins $1 Mil Competition
The University of Hawaii at Manoa's project to advance the use of biofuels on the Hawaiian islands has won a $1 million sustainability research competition. The two-year project will conduct research and plant test sites of Jatropha curcas, a fast-growing, drought resistant tropical oil-bearing plant rich in fatty oils that can be converted to biodiesel. It will also explore the conservation of waste biomass into carbonized material that can be used for soil enrichment. The project will include educational outreach through a capstone engineering course, as well support for undergraduate students in senior thesis projects. The development of a business plan for the commercialization of some of the technologies has the potential to sustain the project after its initial two-year duration.
U Alaska Fairbanks Approves Student Sustainability Projects
The University of Alaska, Fairbanks has approved nine student-led sustainability projects totaling $128,140. Grant proposals were reviewed by the Office of Sustainability and Student RISE (Review of Infrastructure, Sustainability and Energy) Board and preference given to projects that invest in energy efficiency programs and renewable energy projects. Projects selected for funding include a glass pulverizer; local shopping/restaurant guide; student CSA share plan; interactive dashboard; and a carbon emissions inventory.
U New Mexico Sustainability Studies Program Receives $1.6 Mil
The Sustainability Studies program at the University of New Mexico has received two grants totaling more than $1.6 million from the W.K. Kellogg foundation. The U.S. Department of Agriculture also gave the program $290,000 to pay faculty salaries, hire a graduate assistant for a year and a half and provide travel grants and stipends for minority students to take part in the summer field program. The Kellogg grants were invested in the stock market to pay dividends and help keep the program running.
Georgia Tech Alumni Gifts $20K to Recycling Efforts
Georgia Institute of Technology's Student Alumni Association recently presented the campus' Office of Solid Waste Management and Recycling with more than $20,000 through its Gift to Tech program. The department will work with the student association to expand recycling efforts on campus. The initiative was voted to receive funding by students, who chose from five campus projects including campus safety efforts, the Alumni Association's Living History program and a commemorative bench at the undergraduate learning commons.
Southern Oregon U Receives $23K in Renewable Energy Credits
Southern Oregon University has received a $23,000 refund from the Bonneville Environmental Foundation. The refund is a result of the university’s investment in renewable energy credits, known as “Green Tags,” purchased with student fee money to offset the institution’s energy usage. The foundation uses the money from student fees to research and develop sustainable energy projects and 20 percent of the total amount received is refunded back to the school for its own projects. The Student Fee Committee is weighing requests from students for ideas on how to use the money.
Lane CC Receives $100K Grant for Rooftop Solar Panels
Lane Community College (OR) has been awarded a $100,000 Green Power grant funded by Eugene Water & Electric Board customers that opt into the utility company's Green Power program. The college plans to use the grant money to install solar panels atop the roof of its downtown campus building.