1100 Campuses Focus the Nation on Global Warming Solutions
On Jan. 31, 2008, more than 1100 colleges and universities across the US participated in Focus the Nation, a major educational initiative on global warming solutions. The event, which also had the participation of several hundred high schools, faith organizations and civic groups, is believed to be the largest teach-in in U.S. history. Many institutions help open forums on climate change with participation from faculty, elected officials, and other guests. Faculty members from a wide range of disciplines also incorporated climate change into their lectures. The final component of Focus the Nation is the 'Choose Your Future' vote, in which all students, faculty and community participants are encouraged to vote on what they think are the top five climate change solutions from a list of 15 that is available on the event's website. Voting ends in mid February.
DOE Announces 2009 Solar Decathlon Teams
The U.S. Department of Energy recently announced the schools selected to compete in the fourth Solar Decathlon, which will be held in Washington, DC in 2009. The teams, selected from universities in the U.S., Canada, and Germany, will each receive $100,000 from the DOE to design, build, and operate an energy efficient, fully-solar-powered home. In addition to producing enough electricity and hot water to perform all the functions of a home, from powering lights and electronics to cooking, washing clothes and dishes, each home must produce surplus energy sufficient to power an electric car. Applications for the competition were evaluated by a panel made up of engineers, scientists and other experts from DOE and its National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Teams were required to meet specific criteria, demonstrating their ability to design and build an innovative, entirely solar-powered, 800-square-foot home from scratch, including the ability to raise additional funds and assemble a team necessary to carry the project through to completion.
RecycleMania Begins with Record Number of Participants
RecycleMania began January 27, 2008 with a record 400 colleges and universities participating. The competition has more than doubled each year from its initiation in 2001 by two Ohio colleges. The 400 schools represent 46 states and the District of Columbia and include institutions ranging from small two-year community colleges to Ivy League universities. Over a 10-week period from January 27 to April 5, 2008, participating schools will compete in various categories measuring the success of their recycling and waste prevention efforts. Each week, the standings will be posted on the RecycleMania website.
Rice U to Begin EcoRep Program
An internal grant program at Rice University (TX) has provided funds to enable the development of an "EcoRep" program this semester. The grant will pay one student from each residential college to serve as an EcoRep. Each EcoRep will have six main duties: facilitating recycling, reducing waste in the serveries, conserving energy, promoting environmental issues, maintaining contacts with relevant University staff, and administering the Green Dorm Initiative, a program which certifies dorm rooms meeting cer
UCLA Law School to Establish Center on Climate Change
The University of California, Los Angeles School of Law recently secured an endowment fund to establish the Emmett Center, a center dedicated to the study, research, and teaching of knowledge related to climate change and the environment. The Emmett Center plans to engage UCLA experts who are working on matters related to climate change and intends to play a key role in addressing environmental issues.
NC State Begins 'Year of Energy' with Solar Array Dedication
North Carolina State University initiated its 'Year of Energy' with the dedication of a new 75.6 kW photovoltaic array that will serve as an educational project for students. The 'Year of Energy' is a program in which the University plans to focus on energy-related issues throughout 2008. The array, which is owned by Carolina Solar Energy, is believed to be the largest privately financed solar photovoltaic array in North Carolina. The power it generates is sold to Progress Energy. The dedication ceremony was followed with NCSU's inaugural Energy Fair, which served to show attendees how NCSU and its partners foresee solutions to energy issues.
MIT Announces Energy Research Partnership
MIT announced that it will be partnering with Italian energy company, Eni, to develop advanced solar technologies. The Eni-MITEI Solar Frontiers Research Program will focus on nano-structured thin film photovoltaics, luminescent solar concentrators, self assembling photovoltaic materials, water splitting, materials for solar energy capture and storage, and maximizing the return on investment for solar thermals plants. Eni will also support various other energy related projects such as research in evaluation methodologies for the commercial potential of energy startups and novel energy technologies.
National Law Journal Covers Law Schools Going Green
A recently article in the National Law Journal describes how law schools across the country are going green. The University of Colorado School of Law's Wolf Law Building and the University of Denver's Frank H. Ricketson Jr. Law Building have both been certified LEED gold in recently years, and many schools plan to follow suit. Environmentally and sustainably focused law courses and degrees have become more prevalent in recent years, and law schools are seeing increasing student interest in environmental law topics as well.
U Maine Art Students Participate in Global Warming Exhibit
University of Maine art students submitted their global warming and environmentally focused work to an exhibit hosted by the Kennebec Art Association. During the exhibition, participating artists will be accepting donations to purchase offsets for the carbon fuels and materials used for the event.
CUNY Joins Statewide Solar Energy Consortium
The City University of New York (CUNY) recently joined The Solar Energy Consortium (TSEC) of New York State, a not-for-profit group of private and public companies and institutions that will research and develop new ways to efficiently and effectively deliver energy from the sun. TSEC plans to research ways to install economically sensible photovoltaic systems and to create a solid solar industry in the state of New York. Other participating institutions include Cornell University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Clarkson University, Binghamton University and The State University of New York at New Paltz.
U Arizona Launches Research Institute for Solar Energy
The Arizona Board of Regents have approved $3.35 million in funding for Arizona Research Institute for Solar Energy (AzRISE). The new institute was established at University of Arizona this summer with the goal of fully developing solar energy's potential through research, industry partnerships, and policy solutions. The research goals of AzRISE include identifying, funding and coordinating Arizona-specific solar energy research opportunities, developing intellectual property and promoting development and widespread adoption of solar energy. The new funding approved by the regents will allow AzRISE to support individual research efforts and continue its outreach efforts to promote solar energy adoption.