U New Mexico Receives EPA Energy Award
The University of New Mexico has won the Energy Star Combined Heat and Power (CHP) award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for reducing its energy use by 20 percent. EPA recognized the University for its natural gas-fired CHP system at the Ford Utilities Center. Part of a major energy infrastructure upgrade project, the CHP system supplies the campus with roughly one-third of its total electricity demand and produces steam to help meet the space heating, space cooling, and domestic hot water production needs of more than 25,000 students, staff, and faculty. The CHP system runs with an operating efficiency of almost 65 percent and requires 20 percent less fuel than typical alternatives.
University of Toledo Establishes Wetlands on Campus
The University of Toledo (OH) has established the Environmental Remediation and Restoration Experimental Park to support research on phytoremediation, the use of plants for the treatment of environmental contaminants. Researchers will use the site to test the effectiveness of constructed wetlands in removing pollution. The Park was made possible with nearly $4 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
U Texas Arlington Approves University Sustainability Plan
The University of Texas at Arlington president has approved the University's first Sustainability Agenda, a package of 89 actions that will involve students, faculty, and staff across the campus in protecting the environment. Created by the President's Sustainability Committee, the Agenda aims to improve the University’s environmental performance, extend the environmental curriculum, and deepen campus engagement in North Texas environmental affairs. Approved actions include: hiring a Sustainability Coordinator to facilitate the work of the President's Sustainability Committee and sustainability efforts across campus; exploring ways to green the University's curriculum and research; extending implementation of energy conservation measures; hiring student interns to undertake a thorough ecological landscape assessment; and encouraging formation of an active student environmental organization.
U Waterloo Breaks Ground on Green Building
The University of Waterloo (ON) recently held a groundbreaking ceremony for its new $55 million Engineering V building. The six-storey building will feature glass walls, a designated green roof area, and native landscaping. Engineering V, the first of a two-phase building, will house a student design centre on its first two levels. The centre will showcase award-winning student engineering projects, such as the solar and hydrogen fuel cell cars.
Warren Wilson College Residence Hall Receives LEED Gold
Warren Wilson College's (NC) Village South residence hall has received LEED Gold certification. Designed and built with input from students, the apartment-style dormitory features energy conservation, water conservation, and waste minimization measures. Warren Wilson expects the adjacent Village North dorm to achieve LEED Gold certification as well.
Yale Launches Environmental Online Magazine
Yale University (CT) has launched "Yale Environment 360," a new online magazine that aims to become one of the leading websites for commentary and reporting on the crucial environmental issues of the day. The magazine’s inaugural edition features articles by noted environmental advocate and author, Bill McKibben; New Yorker staff writer Elizabeth Kolbert; climate scientist Richard C.J. Somerville; marine biologist and author Carl Safina; British journalist Fred Pearce; and many other writers and thinkers.
Appalachian State U Launches Carbon Neutral Study Abroad Program
Appalachian State University (NC) has designed its first carbon neutral study abroad program. The first program, which will take students to New Zealand for one month this summer, requires the eighteen students and five professors to plant trees in New Zealand and to purchase green power both at home and abroad to completely offset the expected 73 tons of carbon dioxide associated with their air and ground travel. The month-long trip cost the group $782 to offset their travel emissions.
Clinton CC to Offer Wind-energy Degree
The Clinton Community College (NY) Board of Trustees has approved a resolution to create a wind energy and turbine technology associate's in applied sciences degree program. The program will be created in response to the growing need for wind energy technician in the area.
Cloud County CC to Expand Wind Energy Training Program
Cloud County Community College (KS) has been awarded $155,000 by the Kansas Department of Commerce to help expand its Wind Energy Technology program and increase Kansas’ capacity for wind energy production. The funding will help CCCC acquire new staff and equipment for its Associate of Applied Science degree program in Wind Energy Technology, and it will assist in the development of distance education classes. The award comes from the Workforce Solutions Fund and is a direct response to the state’s immediate need for skilled technicians in the wind energy industry. Manhattan Area Technical College (KS) and wind energy company Horizon Wind Energy will partner with CCCC on the project, lending a combination of financial and technical support.
Community College Times Highlights Renewable Energy Curricula
The Community College Times has published an article on how community colleges across the U.S. are beginning to offer courses focused on training renewable energy technicians and installers. The article mentions sustainability across the curriculum initiatives at Butte College (CA); a green building certification program at Cuyahoga Community College (OH); and solar and wind energy, sustainable design, sustainable food supply and biofuels online programs at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College.
Loyola & Lafayette Colleges, CSU Chico Donate Dormitory Items
Students at Loyola College in Maryland donated clothing, dishes, small appliances, school supplies, and non-perishable food items to local non-profit agencies as they moved out of the residence halls this year. The College created a website for the "Good Stuff Campaign" to coordinate the two week collection. Lafayette College (PA) also held a move out donation campaign in which they collected more than 5,000 pounds of unopened food, clothing, personal, and household items, as well as a truckload of furnit
Michigan State U to Reduce Campus Environmental Impact
Michigan State University has announced its plans to begin an Environmental Stewardship Program this summer to help the institution reduce its environmental footprint. Members of the program are tasked with looking into the ways to reduce energy consumption on campus and ways to reduce the amount of trash the University produces. As part of the program, recycling bins will be placed in all of the residence halls starting this fall and in the academic buildings in January of 2009. The initiative is part of the University's membership in the Chicago Climate Exchange, which requires MSU to produce 6 percent less greenhouse gas emissions by 2010 at the campus power plant than in 2000.
Mississippi State Students Win Sustainable Vehicle Competition
Mississippi State University has won the 2008 General Motors and U.S. Department of Energy Challenge X: Crossover to Sustainability student engineering competition. The competition challenged 17 university teams from the U.S. and Canada to reengineer a Chevrolet Equinox that employs advanced powertrain technologies. The goal is to produce a vehicle that has improved fuel economy and lower emissions, all while maintaining driver comfort and vehicle performance. University teams have followed a real world vehicle development process and integrated their advanced technology solutions into their Equinox vehicles. The Mississippi State team designed a through-the-road parallel hybrid electric vehicle powered by a 1.9L GM direct injection turbo diesel engine fueled by bio diesel (B20). It achieved a 38 percent increase in fuel economy over the production vehicle on a modified urban test cycle. The second place vehicle, engineered by students at the University of Wisconsin, is a through-the-road parallel hybrid electric vehicle with a 1.9L GM direct injection turbo diesel engine fueled by B20. Ohio State University was awarded third place for its powersplit hybrid electric vehicle powered by a 1.9L GM direct injection turbo diesel engine and fueled by B20. Other participants included Michigan Technological University, Pennsylvania State University, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology (IN), San Diego State University (CA), Texas Tech University, University of Akron (OH), University of California, Davis, University of Michigan, University of Tennessee, University of Texas at Austin, University of Tulsa (OK), University of Waterloo (ON), Virginia Tech, and West Virginia University.
North Country CC To Establish Alternative Energy Program
North Country Community College (NY) has received a $50,000 grant to design a two-year degree and training program in alternative energy. The new program will initially focus on wind-power technician training with hopes to include special tracks on low-end hydropower generation and solar energy in the future. The grant was provided by Noble Environmental Power of Connecticut.
Northern Arizona U Establishes Office of Sustainability
Northern Arizona University has established an Office of Sustainability to serve as the main point of contact for sustainability issues on campus and in the region. The Office, with falls under the purview of the Office of the President, is also tasked with implementing sustainable energy, water, transportation, purchasing, and recycling efforts on campus and developing partnerships that can bring practical application of university research to campus, the state, and the nation.
Pacific Lutheran U Building Receives LEED Silver
The Pacific Lutheran University (WA) University Center has been awarded LEED Silver certification. The new student center features Energy Star appliances; a lighting system with an internal, perpetual calendar that controls what lights turn on and off based on the rising and setting of the sun; concrete flooring that requires no chemical cleaning products or waxes; low-flow toilet and faucet fixtures that save water; and wood flooring certified by the Forest Stewardship Council. In addition, nearly 95 percent of the construction waste was recycled. The University Center is also powered entirely by renewable energy through a two-year commitment by PLU to purchase wind energy from two local power companies.
Portland State U Partners with Community to Win Service Award
Portland State University (OR), in partnership with the city of Portland and 112 community-based organizations in greater Portland has won the National Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Partnership Award for Campus-Community Collaboration. The group won the award for its Community Watershed Stewardship Program, an initiative in which over 27,000 community volunteers have donated a quarter million hours to install 80,000 plants and restore 50 acres of watershed along two miles of river. Additionally, individual projects have been led and supported by 700 students working as part of class projects, resulting in two master’s theses and three research articles.
Stanford Awards Energy Grants to Faculty
Stanford University's (CA) Precourt Institute for Energy Efficiency has awarded its first three grants for research to faculty members, totaling $358,000 over the next year to 18 months. The three grants were awarded to: engineering professor Curtis Frank and civil and environmental engineering professor Sarah Billington to develop energy-efficient biodegradable foam materials for structural insulated panels to improve heating and cooling efficiency in homes and commercial buildings; civil and environmental engineering professor Mark Jacobson to assess how weather and increased demand from plug-in hybrid vehicles by 2020 will impact the ability of California to deliver a consistent supply of electricity from renewable sources; and associate professor of mechanical engineering Chris Edwards to develop a practical method for quantifying the environmental impacts of diesel and ethanol fuels.
SUNY-Ulster Begins Energy Conservation Project
The State University of New York at Ulster recently began an upgrade to its campus facilities which will be funded through expected energy savings. This project will simultaneously reduce utility, operating and maintenance costs, and greenhouse gas emissions. Upgrade activities will include retrofitting older, less energy efficient equipment on campus with state-of-the-art energy using equipment. The project will also address water conservation and a renewable energy system in the form of a solar hot water heating system. SUNY Ulster is partnering with Johnson Controls to assist in the energy conservation upgrade to its campus.
Texas Christian U to Hold Sustainability-Themed Semester
Texas Christian University has named sustainability as the theme for its fall 2008 semester. The “Think Purple, Live Green” semester will consist of presentations by well-known personalities in sustainability, special classes, symposia and workshops discussing how to make human economic systems last longer and have less impact on ecological systems. The goal of the fall 2008 theme is to encourage members of the TCU community to participate in sustainable activities and learn how to lower their carbon footprint.
U Florida to Offer Minor in Sustainability Studies
The University of Florida has announced that it will begin offering a minor in Sustainability Studies this fall. Housed in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the interdisciplinary minor will be a compilation of courses already offered across the university, with the exception of a newly created introductory course, Facets of Sustainability, and a new capstone course, Sustainability in Action. Students will choose from four tracks of study, which include diverse course offerings from several UF colleges and departments. The tracks are: Ethics, Culture and Human Behavior; Economics, Law and Policy; Production Systems and the Built Environment; and Ecology and Environmental Stewardship.
U Illinois Receives Energy Grants, Establishes Offices of Sustainability
The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign has received 3 grants from the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation totaling over $4 million. The energy foundation grants will provide $1.2 million for lighting upgrades; $2 million for a wind turbine project and $825,000 for a bioenergy research project. In addition, sustainability offices will be established on the Urbana-Champaign, Chicago and Springfield campuses to coordinate administration and student efforts to encourage energy conservation, promote environmentally friendly practices and integrate green thinking into the campuses’ curricula, research, and extracurricular activities.
U Michigan Students Win Better Living Business Plan Challenge
Four University of Michigan master's degree students and one student from New York University have won the "Better Living Business Plan Challenge," a competition that was created to provide business students from around the world an opportunity to invent sustainable products or business solutions. Eight student teams presented their business plans to a panel of executives from Wal-Mart, non-governmental organizations, and other companies in April. The UM team was awarded $20,000 for developing a biodiesel
U Regina to Test Greywater Reclamation Plant
The University of Regina (SK) has received funding for a project to reclaim greywater and protect vital aquatic ecosystems in Saskatchewan and beyond. Over the next three years, Dr. Stephanie Young of the University of Regina will design and test a self-contained, portable, greywater reclamation plant for small community applications. The design of the portable plant is intended to work with a community's existing water treatment facilities. The project will be lead by the University of Regina in collaboration with Communities of Tomorrow. The goal of the applied research and demonstration project is to commercialize the portable plant, increase efficiency of water reuse, and reduce fresh water demand and the corresponding wastewater load.
UW Oshkosh Holds Sustainability Across the Curriculum Workshop
The University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh held a workshop aimed at teaching faculty to infuse sustainability into their curriculum. The Winnebago Sustainability Project workshop, which is based off of the model taught in AASHE's Sustainability Across the Curriculum Leadership Workshops, was attended by 10 UW Oshkosh faculty. It was created as a result of the UW Oshkosh Sustainability Plan goal to link the University's formal mission with informal teaching opportunities to develop understanding, attitudes, and habits that promote sustainability.
Virginia Tech Commits to Developing Campus Sustainability Plan
Virginia Tech has announced that the University will develop a campus sustainability plan by the end of the 2009 spring semester. The plan will be aimed at reducing global warming emissions in everyday campus operations. The recently formed Committee on Energy and Sustainability has been charged with developing the “Virginia Tech Climate Action Commitment,” which will also be developed in close collaboration with the Office of the Vice President for Administrative Services.
Wilkes U Establishes Organic Farm on Campus
Wilkes University (PA) recently held a Small Plot Intensive (SPIN) farming workshop for more than 25 people from across the world. The participants established and built a farm on the Wilkes campus by forming and shaping the beds, seeding and installing pathways, and planting natural insect repellants. SPIN farming is a commercial organic-based farming system for land areas under an acre in size. It takes the challenges posed by urbanization and turns them into the farmer’s advantage by capitalizing on limited space and resources.
Williams College Holds Green Commencement
Williams College (MA) held a green commencement that featured reusable dinnerware, local food, fair trade coffee and chocolate, and a ban on bottled and canned beverages. The College also purchased carbon offsets for the attendees' travels. After the ceremony, the college held "Give it Up," a collection drive for clothing, books, and other items as students moved out of their residences.
2 Tennessee Campuses Receive Env'l Stewardship Awards
Cleveland State Community College (TN) and Vanderbilt University (TN) were recently awarded 2008 Governors Environmental Stewardship Awards. CSCC won in the Excellence in Energy Leadership category for its existing construction technology program which was enhanced to include a focus on alternative and renewable energy sources and the techniques and technologies for energy efficient construction. Vanderbilt won the Excellence in Green Schools – Higher Education category for the Commons Project which consists of five newly constructed residence houses, five renovated residence houses, and the Commons Center on Vanderbilt's Peabody campus. The LEED certification of the new and renovated buildings, the attractive and energy-saving building features, the waste reduction and recycling programs, the use of alternative fuels, the selection of recycled and renewable materials, and educational demonstrations for each of these items helped Vanderbilt to win this year's award.
3 Pitzer College Residence Halls Receive LEED Gold
Three new Pitzer College (CA) residence halls have received LEED Gold certification. The certification is, in part, a result of the active participation and planning completed by Pitzer students, faculty, alumni, and staff.
7 WA Campuses Receive State Grants for Solar Energy
The State of Washington Office of Financial Management has awarded seven Washington campuses state energy grants totaling $1 million to support the installation of solar panels. The grants were awarded to Central Washington University, Clark College, Pierce College, Skagit Valley College, South Puget Sound Community College, Tacoma Community College, and The Evergreen State College. Funding for the grants came from the 2007–09 operating budget.
Arizona State U to Offer Master's in Social Justice
Arizona State University has announced that, starting this fall, it will offer a Master's degree in Social Justice and Human Rights. The program will offer two tracks: research and non-governmental organization (NGO) management. Those pursuing the research track will be prepared for careers requiring research skills in governmental and non-governmental agencies. Graduates from this track will also be prepared for doctoral programs in the social sciences and law. The NGO management track combines coursework in social justice and human rights with practical training in non-profit management. Graduates will be prepared for leadership positions in the NGO sector.
Biocycle Magazine Covers Sustainability Initiatives at Allegheny
Biocycle Magazine has published an article on Allegheny College's (PA) sustainability initiatives. The article describes Allegheny's Center for Economic and Environmental Development (CEED), composting program, and commitment to climate-neutrality. According to the article, CEED projects have included watershed protection programs with area elementary and secondary schools; the Environmental Health initiative, which surveys the risks and assesses the damage of environmental factors on the health of the community; the Strategic Environmental Management Initiative, which works with area businesses to reduce costly waste streams and reinvent and promote the use of sustainable products and production processes; and the Sustainable Forestry Project that brings local forest landowners and forestry professionals together to improve woodlot management practices, and substantially increase the economic contribution of the wood products industry in the region. The article also describes the College's composting program, which composts 800 – 1000 pounds per day of kitchen prepared food waste from one dining hall, and its commitment to climate neutrality through the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment.
Georgetown College Partners for Diversity
Georgetown College (KY) has partnered with the alumni from Bishop College (TX), a historically black institution that closed in 1988, to create the Bishop Scholars Program. The program allows for one student from each of the four largest African American Baptist denominations to attend Georgetown College on a full scholarship. A Bishop Scholar can also be recommended by a Bishop alumnus. The first five students that will take part in the program this fall were either recommended by Bishop-educated pastors or were legacies of Bishop alumni.
George Washington U Holds Green Commencement
George Washington University (DC) recently held a green commencement ceremony. Green features included attendance tickets printed on Green Seal certified recycled paper containing 30 percent post-consumer waste, recycling containers for paper and plastic, and GW staff members wearing organic cotton hats. Additionally, graduating seniors were encouraged to sign the "Green Graduation Pledge," in which graduates promise to explore and take into account the social and environmental consequences of any job the
Haywood Community College Receives Biofuels Grant
Haywood Community College (NC) was awarded a $135,000 Biofuels Center of North Carolina grant for its Haywood County Biofuels Production, Education, and Training Project. The project will provide alternative fuel supplies for campus and county diesel vehicles; integrate biodiesel training into the college's existing Industrial and Automotive Systems Technology curricula and Continuing Education programs; incorporate biodiesel into a proposed Sustainable Technology certificate program; train members of the regional workforce in biofuels technology; and increase public awareness of biofuels and biodiesel production. Individuals will learn how to install and operate their own reactors/refineries. Waste-oil from county sources such as Haywood County Schools and the college café will be processed into biodiesel.
Hofstra U & Boston College Partner for Community Engagement
The Hofstra University (NY) National Center for Suburban Studies (NCSS) will receive $25,000 from the State of New York to create a Sustainable Suburban Neighborhoods Initiative, a joint project of the NCSS and Boston College’s (MA) Urban Ecology Institute. The collaborative, which focuses on suburban ecological and environmental issues on Long Island, is intended to explore ways to build bridges between high-quality research and the needs of the broader community, with the ultimate goal of creating ecologically, socially, and economically healthy neighborhoods. The aim is to engage Hofstra faculty and students with people living in economically challenged communities.
Lesley, Dartmouth, Simmons, & Ohio State Students Donate Items
Lesley University (MA) students recently donated 15 boxes of gently used clothing and shoes and 4 boxes of craft supplies, school supplies, dishware, desk lamps, un-opened toiletries, pantry items and more to two local aid organizations. The initiative, "Dump and Go," took place during spring move out. Similarly, Dartmouth College (NH) students recently began the "Sustainable Move-Out" program, an initiative where the College collects unwanted items from students moving out of the residence halls and Gree
NAU Purchases Electric Forklift, Switches to Greener Products
Northern Arizona University recently purchased an electric forklift to replace its propane-fueled forklift. The new purchase is part of NAU's effort to promote accountable and innovative sustainable practices in its day-to-day operations. The University is also transitioning to 100 percent recycled, Green Seal Certified paper products, recycled trash can liners, compact fluorescent lights bulbs, and Green Seal Certified cleaning products whenever possible. Additionally, NAU is planning to purchase a hybrid, diesel, or electric box delivery truck to replace its gasoline vehicle in the future.
NY Times Covers Sustainability at Oberlin College
The New York Times recently published a story on one of Oberlin College's (OH) campus sustainability initiatives. The article discusses the creation of the Student Experiment in Ecological Design, Oberlin's sustainability house, and the experience students had as they moved in and adjusted to living in a more sustainable manner.
Portland State U Offers Course on Reducing Campus Carbon Emissions
Portland State University (OR) recently offered a new senior capstone course entitled, "Towards Carbon Neutrality at Portland State University." The course, which is open to all majors, was designed to teach students about climate change, to let them be directly involved in the process towards carbon neutrality, and to get students involved with campus decision making around sustainability practices. The students were tasked with gathering information for a campus emissions report, which will be presented
Presidio School of Mgmt Appoints 4 Faculty in Sustainable Mgmt
The Presidio School of Management (CA) has appointed Hunter Lovins, Gil Friend, Jay Ogilvy, and Sissel Waage as faculty in the new Executive Program teaching team. They will work with senior-level professionals on the practical applications of sustainable business frameworks, tools and metrics, and their courses will teach participants how to apply sustainability principles to achieve greater profitability and integrated bottom line results.
Rider University Clears Trees with Plow Horses
Rider University (NJ) recently hired a company to clear four acres of felled trees using plow horses instead of bulldozers in an effort to keep a residence hall construction project more environmentally friendly. CitiLog, the company hired to clear the trees, plans to reuse the wood once the project is complete.
San Francisco State U Completes GHG Inventory
San Francisco State University (CA) has completed its first greenhouse gas inventory, which reports 1990 – 2006 emissions. The inventory calculates emissions from purchased electricity, natural gas, air travel, university fleet, commuter transportation, and solid waste. It also calculates sequestration from composting. The report found that, in 2006, the campus emitted 61,184 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents, a 47 percent increase from 1990. The campus plans to spend this summer and next year developing a Sustainability Action Plan.
Sullivan County CC to Offer Green Building Associate's Degree
Sullivan County Community College (NY) has announced plans to offer a new Associate's degree in green building maintenance and management. The new associate of applied sciences degree will be a four-semester, on-campus program designed to prepare green collar workers for careers in managing and maintaining high-performance commercial buildings.
U British Columbia Launches Energy Monitoring Project
The University of British Columbia has launched an initiative to track energy usage and greenhouse gas emissions in five campus buildings. The project will track electricity, steam, and water consumption in the buildings using software and power meters, and the results can be seen in real-time at website hosted by Small Energy Group, UBC's partner in the project. In a related project, a UBC Ph.D. candidate will investigate how occupants in two of the five buildings can use this real-time energy data to reduce energy consumption and increase comfort.
U New Mexico Receives Recycling Award
The University of New Mexico recently won an award from the New Mexico Recycling Coalition for the Best Community-Based Recycling Program. The recycling program was nominated for holding education environmental fairs to increase awareness of pollution prevention activities, for holding e-waste events and for offering tours to elementary and middle school students to educate them about recycling. The award nomination cites the program for great customer service, pointing out the stripping of old refrigerators into recyclable component parts, and spreading the word about a new market for recycled Styrofoam. Additionally, the UNM Recycling Program won 10 bins in a competition co-sponsored by the National Recycling Coalition and Coca Cola.
U Oregon Program Causes Participants to Reduce Their Carbon Footprint
The University of Oregon Climate Leadership Initiative recently completed a review of the Climate Master program's first year. The review found that participants in the program reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by two tons per person over the course of the first year. As a result of the information studied during the program, students began to take their carbon footprint into consideration when making daily decisions. Participants also reported that they gained a "sense of community" and a greater s
U Washington to Form College of the Environment
The University of Washington has announced plans to merge six existing academic disciplines that focus on oceans, the atmosphere, and forests to form the College of the Environment. The new college would join Forestry, Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, Atmospheric Sciences, Earth and Space Sciences, Marine Affairs, and Oceanography, and it would add a new program, Environment, Society, and Culture.
U Wisconsin-Superior Students Convert Garbage into Art
The University of Wisconsin-Superior Campus Sustainability group has developed "The Art of Garbage," a program in which UWS art students take regularly discarded materials and turn them into art. The "Art of Garbage" exhibition is expected to open in September 2008. The initiative is part of UWS's participation in the American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment.