Bates College Achieves Carbon Neutrality
Measured against a 2001 baseline, Bates has eliminated 95 percent of its campus greenhouse gas emissions, and will purchase carbon offsets for the remainder. In its Climate Action Plan, announced nine years ago, Bates committed to hitting this milestone by 2020.
U Buffalo Offers Sustainability Certificate
Available to all students enrolled in one of the university’s graduate programs, the Advanced Certificate in Sustainability consists of 15 graduate credit hours, addressing the complexity of environment issues from the perspective of the natural sciences, social sciences and the humanities.
Ripon College Selects Environment-Focused Commencement Theme
Since 1957, the college has selected a theme for its commencement and this year's theme was Caring for Our Environment. The theme was highlighted with 100 percent biodegradable plastic cups, utensils and napkins. Perennial plants were used in ceremony decor and then replanted on campus afterward. Caps and gowns were made from 23 recycled water bottles. Marc Edwards, a Virginia Tech professor of civil and environmental engineering that helped uncover the Flint, Mich., water crisis, was a speaker.
Yale U Eliminates Single-Use Plastic Water Bottles at Commencement
In an effort to reduce waste, the university eliminated 11,000 single-use bottles by encouraging honorees and guests to bring their own reusable bottles or use compostable cups at one of six different hydration stations. In previous years, Yale distributed more than 300 cases of individual plastic water bottles, many of which were left unopened.
U Michigan Initiates Sustainability Research Grant Program
The new Catalyst Grant program from university's Graham Sustainability Institute aims to address the challenges of safe drinking water, climate change vulnerability, sustainable livestock production, and the health and energy justice impacts of electricity generation. Led by multidisciplinary faculty teams, these new Catalyst Grant projects will lay the groundwork for ongoing collaborations and develop tools and recommendations for decisions that advance sustainability. In its inaugural year, the four projects were selected from eight proposals submitted by 21 faculty members and researchers across nine units. Each of the selected proposals will receive $10,000 to support collaborative research activities.
U California San Diego Launches Pilot Student Loan Debt Program
The university's Extension office and the San Diego Workforce Partnership have joined forces for a new initiative, called the Workforce Income Share Agreement Fund, aimed at removing financial barriers to higher education for unemployed and underemployed individuals. Participants have access to certificate-granting courses at the University Extension. Once students complete their certificate and secure a job with an annual salary of at least $40,000, they pay a set percentage of their income over a set period of time.
Cornell U to Offset New Buildings Electricity With Solar
The university aims to offset about 35 percent of the electricity of proposed new residential buildings using photovoltaics. The proposed residential expansion project, which will allow all first-year and sophomore students to be housed on campus or in affiliated housing, was designed in alignment with the university's Climate Action Plan.
Monash U Opens Sustainable Residential Building
(Australia) A new 150-bed residential accommodation complex includes rooftop solar panels, a rainwater harvesting tank, and a landscaped dry creek bed to manage stormwater during high-rain events. In addition to electricity supplied by its rooftop solar, some electricity will come wind energy through the university's power purchase agreement in a wind farm. The complex will be powered solely using renewable energy.
U Dayton to Launch Bachelor Degrees in Sustainability
The Board of Trustees recently approved Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees in sustainability, which students can start in August 2019. Housed in the College of Arts and Sciences, the Bachelor of Science degree will have tracks in energy and sustainable watersheds. The Bachelor of Arts degree will have tracks in food studies and urban sustainability.
2019 AASHE Conference & Expo Workshop Schedule
The full schedule of pre-conference (Sunday, Oct. 27) and post-conference (Wednesday, Oct. 30) workshops is now available and includes half-day and full-day learning sessions. These workshops are not included in the full-conference registration price and are offered for a separate fee.
AASHE Member Discount: $100 Off Sustainability Certification Through ISSP
The International Society of Sustainability Professionals (ISSP) offers students, faculty and staff from AASHE-member schools a $100 discount on the ISSP Sustainability Associate (ISSP-SA) credential exam. The program is designed to recognize the knowledge, skills and abilities of those in the sustainability field, including students with knowledge of core sustainability concepts.
U Colorado Boulder Athletics Signs Sports Climate Action Framework
The university's new commitment to the U.N. Sports for Climate Action Framework aims to reduce emissions in sports operations and tap the popularity and passion of sport to engage of fans in the effort. The U.N. Sports for Climate Action Framework has two overarching objectives: to achieve a clear trajectory for the global sports community to combat climate change and to leverage sports as a unifying tool to drive climate awareness and action among global citizens. Signatories of the framework commit to five core principles–undertaking systematic efforts to promote greater environmental responsibility, reducing overall climate impact, educating for climate action, promoting sustainable and responsible consumption, and advocating for climate action through communication.
Stony Brook U Partners With Sustainable Energy Research Center
In an effort to support, foster and accelerate research, the university and the San Diego-based Center for Sustainable Energy recently signed an MOU assess the regional and global commercial potential of clean energy strategies that contribute to the U.S. transition to a low-carbon economy and to secure additional funding for projects. An overarching aspect of the collaboration will be to target greenhouse gas reduction projects that advance the goals of existing programs focusing on climate change.
AASHE Workshop: Sustainability, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Workshop
Designed for faculty, administrators, staff and student activists of all disciplines, this workshop aims to give attendees the tools to interconnect and integrate sustainability, diversity, equity and inclusion into their campus, curriculum and departments. This event will take place June 12 - 14 at North Hennepin Community College. Registration closes June 3.
Two Faculty Win Sustainable Chemistry Challenge
The first prize, worth over $56,000 (50,000 euros), in the 2019 Elsevier Foundation-ISC3 Green and Sustainable Chemistry Challenge went to Dr. Ramia Albakain, associate professor at the University of Jordan, for development of a technique to remove toxic metals from medical wastewater, making it safer for agricultural irrigation. The second prize, worth over $28,000, went to Dr. Ankur Patwardhan, head of the Biodiversity Department at Maharashtra Education Society’s Abasaheb Garware College, for development of a natural pollinator attractant formulation aimed at enhancing floral visits by butterflies thereby increasing plant-pollinator interactions.
U East London Students Tackle Plastic Waste on Beaches
(U.K.) The charity GreenSeas Trust approached the university's product design academics to ask if students would be interested in creating an impactful design for a bin that would inspire more people on beaches to dispose of plastic waste in bins. Two third-year students designed and created a bin in the shape of a life ring that will be rolled out on June 5, World Environment Day.
Blackburn College to Install 2 MW Solar Array
The university will soon break ground on a two-megawatt solar-electricity project on an eight-acre plot once used as athletic practice fields. The college is purchasing the array by using tax-exempt bond proceeds. The project is estimated to provide $125,000 annual savings to the college after project expenses.
Call for Student Abstracts: HBCU Climate Change Conference
The Deep South Center for Environmental Justice, in collaboration with Texas Southern University, invites student abstracts for oral and poster presentations for its seventh annual HBCU Climate Change Conference, happening Nov. 13 - 16, 2019, in New Orleans, Louisiana. The conference will address issues related to climate justice, adaptation, community resilience, global climate issues, and other major climate change topics. Proposals are due June 1.
Campus Compact National Conference: Call for Proposals
Campus Compact invites proposals for Campus Compact's national conference, the Compact20, happening March 29 - April 1, 2020, in Seattle, Washington. Proposals should explore and connect to the conference theme – The Promise of Full Participation: Democracy, Opportunity, Voice. Proposals are welcomed that represent work undertaken through public, private, two-year, four-year, and graduate colleges and universities, along with organizations outside of higher education, including community-based partners. All sessions should be interactive, contribute to equity and inclusion goals, and represent a multiplicity of perspectives. Proposals are due June 30.
The Chronicle Covers Climate-Related Facilities Concerns
In May, the Campus Spaces section of The Chronicle of Higher Education compiled pieces on how colleges are planning for climate change through the built environment and how they are protecting the campus from floods, fires, utility failures and more. The piece highlights Washington College, whose campus lies along the bank of the Chester River; Middlebury College, who became carbon neutral in 2016; and an opinion piece on the urgency of creating resiliency.
RecycleMania Tournament Reveals 2019 Winners
Loyola Marymount U took top place in the Diversion and Per Capita Classic, while Knox College clinched first in Food Organics. Winners in one-time reporting categories included The Ohio State University, Rutgers University, Saint Louis University, Southwestern College and Union College. The 2019 competition engaged students and staff at 300 colleges in the U.S. and Canada who recycled and composted 69.8 million pounds of materials.