Washington U St. Louis Launches Student RE Program
The for-credit experiential learning program called RESET (Renewable Energy Student Engagement Team) explores engineering, policy and business aspects of solar projects. In mid-April, the 19 students that comprise the cohort pitched to senior university leadership a feasible solar-electric project on five buildings. The proposal would add 120 kilowatts of solar-generating capacity and have a cost avoidance of $500,000 during the 20-year life of the arrays.
Vanderbilt U Releases Strategic Sustainability Plan
Vanderbilt University unveiled a comprehensive long-term strategy on Earth Day 2019 to significantly reduce its environmental footprint, in part by powering its campus entirely through renewable energy, putting the university on track to be carbon neutral by 2050. The university plans to meet its 2050 commitment by investing in on-site clean energy and off-site large-scale renewable energy, increasing green spaces across campus such as pedestrian-friendly walkways and parks, reducing energy consumption and waste, decreasing the university’s carbon footprint from transportation and commuting, and investing in sustainable built environments.
AASHE Awards Judge Recruitment
AASHE is recruiting a jury of higher education sustainability leaders for the 2019 AASHE Sustainability Awards. Judges will review case studies and research related to higher education sustainability. Judging will occur over an eight-week period between June and July.
Call for Earth Day Photographs
To celebrate Earth Day, AASHE invites campuses to submit photographs from Earth Day festivities and activities to the Campus Sustainability Hub for a chance to be featured in an Earth Day blog post. Photo submissions are accepted year-round, however photos submitted before April 30 and containing an “Earth Day” tag will be considered.
U Illinois Urbana-Champaign Adds Rooftop Solar Array
The new 12.5-kilowatt solar electric array was recently installed on the fourth floor rooftop of the Business Instructional Facility addition. The new array will supply enough power to offset anticipated energy use of the fourth floor addition by contributing approximately 15,500 kilowatt-hours per year. The Student Sustainability Committee funded roughly half of the $116,290 project.
North Carolina State U Housekeeping Becomes Green Seal Certified
University Housekeeping recently achieved the Green Seal certification by meeting products and services requirements and passing a performance review encompassing all aspects of its cleaning program. The requirements, which range from equipment and procedures to chemicals and employee training, were documented and verified through an on-site audit.
Johns Hopkins U Enters Solar Energy Procurement Agreement
The university has entered into a 15-year agreement to supply its campuses with more than 250,000 megawatt-hours of solar power per year, meeting roughly two-thirds of its overall energy needs with solar power. The university will purchase the power and project-specific RECs from a new 175-megawatt solar plant being developed in Virginia.
Princeton U Releases Sustainability Plan
The university’s new Sustainability Action Plan sets targets to further reduce greenhouse gas emissions and outlines repeatable, scalable and innovative strategies that engage all faculty, staff and students in creating a sustainable campus. The plan covers energy, waste and water reduction; alternative modes of transportation; healthy water and habitats; responsible development; and sustainable purchasing. Princeton will aim to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2046, which is the university’s 300th anniversary.
U San Francisco Reaches Carbon Neutrality
Reaching its goal of zero net carbon emissions 31 years ahead of its 2050 target date, the university achieved neutrality through on-campus renewable energy and energy-efficiency upgrades, purchasing carbon offsets in projects with a focus on environmental justice, reducing waste, and supporting a diversity of transportation options with lower carbon impact.
Penn State U Offers Faculty Workshop on Ethics of Climate Change Course
In order to expand the impact of the new Ethics of Climate Change course, the university’s Office for General Education and the Sustainability Institute will offer a two-day training workshop for Penn State faculty interested in bringing the course to their campuses. Participants will have an opportunity to work with the original designers of the course as well as with climate change experts. Participants will receive a small amount of supplemental pay, meals, housing, and individualized guidance that will extend beyond the two-day workshop.
U.S. Solar Decathlon 2019 Announces Winners
The U.S. Department of Energy recently announced winners of its Solar Decathlon Design Challenge, comprising 10 contests, in which student teams design highly efficient and innovative buildings powered by renewable energy. Virginia Tech was the grand winner. The primary goals of the competition are to advance building science curricula in university programs across the country and inspire students to continue careers related to cutting edge high-performance building design.
Call for Applications: Future Organic Farmer Education Grant
The California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) Foundation is now accepting applications for educational grant funding from students currently enrolled in the U.S. who are pursuing a career in organic agricultural production. Applications must be submitted by May 6.
PLAN's Atlas Program
Post-Landfill Action Network's (PLAN) Atlas program is an assessment framework to support universities and colleges in creating zero waste strategic plans. Using a two-step approach, PLAN will work with campuses to assess infrastructure, policy and communication gaps, and provide baseline data on current waste management operations. The outcome of participating in the program is a Zero Waste Plan with a focus on infrastructure, policy, education and outreach that includes short term, mid-term and long-term initiatives.
The Green Scholars Program
The Green Scholars Program offers opportunities for students who represent disadvantaged, low-income and underrepresented backgrounds to receive partial and full scholarships to participate in The Green Program's international opportunities.
Union College Installs EV Charging Stations
In an effort to encourage more electric vehicle users, the college has added nine new dual-port charging stations around campus, bringing the number of spots available for electric vehicle users to 22 from four. The stations were paid for in part through grants from National Grid and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority.
U Saskatchewan Invests in Energy Efficiency
Armed with $1.5 million in support from the federal government’s Low Carbon Economy Fund, the university plans to fix, replace or eliminate equipment and systems that are outdated and inefficient in 26 buildings on campus, to be completed by March 2022.
Duke U Develops Green Building Standards
The High Performance Building Framework is a set of procedures and guidelines for new construction and major renovations that takes a holistic view of sustainable building at Duke. Outlining a process for planning and designing campus buildings, the plan also includes a new tracking and rating system to examine how facilities perform.
AASHE Sustainability Awards: Call for Submissions
Each year, AASHE bestows its awards on institutions and individuals who demonstrate a commitment to higher education sustainability. The award categories collectively recognize sustainability achievements and individuals conducting research on campus sustainability. Additionally, one award recognizes an individual for advancing sustainability in higher education over their lifetime. Submissions and nominations are due on May 10.