Yale Reduces Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 17%
Yale University (CT) recently announced that it has reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by 17%, or 43,000 metric tons, since 2005. In 2005, Yale committed to cut its GHG emissions to 10% below the University's 1990 levels by 2020. Yale's strategy to shrink its carbon footprint calls for a mix of conservation measures, the use of renewable energy on campus, and direct participation in carbon offset projects. Yale has achieved its current reduction through projects and policies including the installation of more efficient heating and cooling systems in 90 buildings, new automatic controls for heating, cooling and lighting, the replacement of windows, new and modified power plant equipment, achieving LEED Silver or better certification for all new buildings and major renovations, the use of ground water for cooling, and a 10% yearly reduction in electricity consumption by students in Yale's undergraduate residential colleges.
U Penn Launches Car Share Program
The University of Pennsylvania is launching a car sharing program which will include 40 vehicles and a Penn Sustainability Fund for special environmental projects. Officials say that this is the largest university car sharing program in the North America. The program, supported by PhillyCarShare, will be available to the University's faculty, staff, and students, age 18 and above.
Western Kentucky U Initiates Bike Share Program
Western Kentucky University has initiated Big Red's Bikes, a bike sharing program that was started by an on-campus student organization called GreenToppers. The program features bicycles that were refurbished through the donation of old bikes, chains, tires, tubes, and locks.
U Penn Eliminates Student Loans
The University of Pennsylvania announced a new initiative that will replace student loans with grants for undergraduates, making it possible for students from a broad range of economic backgrounds to graduate debt-free. The new program will be phased in beginning September 2008, and will include all eligible undergraduates, not just entering freshmen. Students with family incomes under $100,000 will receive loan-free aid packages, while families above that level will receive a 10 percent reduction in need-based loans. By fall 2009, all undergraduate students eligible for financial aid will receive loan-free aid packages, regardless of family income level.
Dartmouth Announces New Financial Aid Program
Dartmouth College (NH) recently announced a new financial aid initiative that will begin in the fall of 2008. The program includes: free tuition for students who come from families with annual incomes below $75,000, replacing loans with scholarships, need-blind admission for international students, and scholarships of $2,950 to allow financial aid recipients to take advantage of research or internship opportunities in their junior year. The new initiative will cost an additional $10 million per year, which will be paid for through the reallocation of resources and the use of funds generated by an increase in the distribution from endowment.
New Resource on Academic Programs in Urban Sustainability
AASHE has compiled a list of undergraduate and graduate programs that focus on urban sustainability. The resource also features a list of academic centers and research initiatives related to urban sustainability. The resource is only available to AASHE members.
Chronicle of HE Calls for Guest Writers
The Chronicle of Higher Education is calling for guest writers for their new Buildings and Grounds blog. The Chronicle plans to feature one guest blogger per month, and asks that the blogger post at least one item per week about facilities, campus buildings, landscape, sustainability, energy, or anything relevant. Blogs must be 500 words or less.
Call for EPA Environmental Justice Awards Nominations
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will recognize academic institutions that undertake environmental justice initiatives to make a positive impact in a community. The goals of the award include, but are not limited to promoting positive behavior on environmental justice issues by all stakeholder groups, documenting EJ models of success for other to emulate, encouraging achievement of environmental results in communities having EJ issues, and encouraging collaborative problem solving by all stakeholder organizations to address significant EJ concerns. Nominees will be evaluated based on innovation, community responsibility, community, equity, and public involvement, partnership and collaboration, environmental justice integration, and demonstrated results in effectiveness or sustainability. Nominations must be postmarked by February 11, 2008.
2008 Citizen Science Paper Competition
SustainUS is holding the 2008 Citizen Science Paper Competition. Participants are asked to submit a paper related to the discussion topics of the upcoming UN Commission on Sustainable Development. This year's discussion topics are: Africa, Agriculture, Desertification, Drought, Land, and Rural Development. The purpose of the competition is to make technical aspects of those topics relevant and understandable to the general public and influence sound public policy. Winners have their work published in the online journal Citizen Science, and are given the opportunity to present at the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development to be held May 5-16, 2008 in New York City. Papers will be accepted in three categories, based upon education and experience, with a winner chosen within each: 1) Middle and high school; 2) Undergraduate, including all two- and four-year institutions; and 3) Graduate, including all masters, professional and doctoral programs. All participants must be residents of the United States (this includes international youth studying at a US academic institution) and between 13-26 years of age. The application deadline has been extended to February 15, 2008.
Oxfam America Student Leadership Program
Oxfam America, an international relief and development organization, is currently accepting applications for the CHANGE Initiative, their national student leadership program. CHANGE offers students entering their sophomore or junior year at US based colleges the opportunity to become effective social change agents. CHANGE Leaders are exposed to the international development issues that inform Oxfam's work, and apply their skills and insights to run Oxfam campaigns on their campuses and in their communities. Selected students are required to participate in a week-long training in Boston, July 19-25, 2008, which is organized and paid for by Oxfam. Students must also implement an Oxfam campaign on their campus and communicate regularly with Oxfam staff about the work they are undertaking during the 2008-2009 academic year. Applications are due April 1st, 2008.
Campus Sustainability Planning Network
The Society for College and University Planning has created a social networking website for people to connect and share knowledge about campus sustainability planning. The site will also serve to manage and promote campus-based Campus Sustainability Day events.
U Western Ontario Switches to Biodegradable Food Packaging
As a result of efforts by the University Students' Council, the University of Western Ontario is transitioning from Styrofoam to 100% biodegradable food containers, plates, and garbage bags. The products, which come at no extra cost to students, are made mostly from sugar cane and corn starch and will biodegrade in 60 to 90 days.
Northampton CC to Use 100% Recycled Paper
Northampton Community College (PA) will switch to using 100% recycled paper. Although the per-carton cost will increase, the college plans to purchase the recycled paper in bulk to offset the costs. In addition to this effort, NCC has also set all campus printers to print double-sided and capped the amount of pages one computer can print within a given time frame.
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.
Ohio U to Reduce Off-Campus Energy Use
Ohio University has received a $50,000 grant from the Sugar Bush Foundation for a project that aims to reduce energy waste in off-campus student housing. The grant will support the University's Green House Project, which provides energy-efficiency audits of residential properties and disseminates information, recommendations, and financial support to students and landlords interested in making related improvements. The project will offset a portion of OU's carbon footprint as part of the University's participation in the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment.
UCSD Seeks to Reduce Water and Energy Use through Weather Sensors
The University of California, San Diego plans to install a network of up to 30 weather sensors on rooftops across campus. The data retrieved from the sensors will serve to provide an accurate display of weather conditions, which will allow for better control of the inside temperatures. The program could also help run the university irrigation system more efficiently and help determine the best placement for solar arrays.
Opportunity to be Featured in Making a Difference College Guide
Miriam Weinstein, the author of Making A Difference College Guide, is seeking colleges with a strong focus on the environment and sustainability to feature in the 11th edition of her book, the Authoritative Guide to Green and Socially Responsible Colleges. She is particularly looking for schools with strong student activism supported by the administration. Campus sustainability efforts are also looked upon favorably. Miriam requests a sliding scale fee to be featured in her book. She is on a tight deadline so a quick response is necessary to take advantage of this opportunity. Institutions interested in being featured should contact Miriam directly at email@example.com.
Smart and Sustainable Campus Conference Student Scholarships
The partnering organizations of the Smart and Sustainable Campus Conference are pleased to announce a call for conference student scholarship applications. The scholarship will include on-site registration materials, attendance at all conference sessions, and meals offered during the event. The conference will be held March 31 - April 2, 2008 at the University of Maryland, College Park. 20 scholarships are available for the both undergraduate and graduate students. Deadline for applications is February 29, 2008.
Call for Applications: Community Engagement Classification
The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching has announced the call for applications for the 2008 Community Engagement Classification process. The program provides a way for institutions to describe commitments to their community with a public and nationally recognized classification. The documentation framework's purpose is to honor the diversity of institutions and their approaches to community engagement. The deadline for declaring intent to apply is March 1, 200
Higher Education in a Warming World
The National Wildlife Federation has released "Higher Education in a Warming World: The Business Case of Climate Leadership on Campus." The new publication highlights the business, educational, and moral arguments for reducing greenhouse gas emissions on campus, with best practices from US colleges and universities. The report includes case examples on implementing climate action solutions in the areas of energy efficiency, renewable energy, cogeneration, transportation, green buildings, renewable energy
SUNY ESF Enlarges Alternative Fuel Supply
The SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry recently had two 3,000 gallon alternative fuel storage tanks delivered to its campus in order to supply the college's growing fleet of alternative fuel vehicles. Over 34% of SUNY ESF vehicles run on fuels such as flex-fuel, biodiesel, electric hybrids, concentrated natural gas, and propane.
2008 Campus Vote Initiative
Campus Compact has launched a new website to encourage higher education institutions to help educate and empower students to take part in the upcoming elections. The website features information on voter registration, ways to connect service with civic engagement, strategies for encouraging democratic participation, and model campus programs. The site also offers hands-on tools and templates for students, faculty, and community service staff as well as information on other nonpartisan democracy initiatives.
Duke Hires Coordinator of Student Environmental Initiatives
Duke University (NC) has appointed Charlotte R. Clark to the newly created Coordinator of Student Environmental Initiatives position. Clark will work with the Nicholas School's Director of Undergraduate Studies and Duke's VP of Student Affairs to develop a strategic, university-wide plan to boost environmental awareness and encourage greater participation in environmental initiatives. Her main goals include promoting environmental literacy, promoting best practices for environmental management on campus, and increasing student engagement with each other and with faculty and staff around environmental topics and activities.
U Central Oklahoma Introduces Bike Share Program
The University of Central Oklahoma recently launched its "Bum-A-Bike" initiative, a program which allows UCO students, faculty, and staff to check out bikes free of charge for up to two weeks with a campus ID. The program was initiated when the manager of a local restaurant donated 10 bicycles to the University.
Andover Newton Trustees Vote to Cut Energy Consumption by 20%
The Andover Newton Theological School's (MA) Board of Trustees voted unanimously to reduce energy consumption by 20% over 5 years. The Board promised to publish annual progress reports and is hoping that entire community will take part in the effort.
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 New Hampshire Recycles Demolished Building Materials
The University of New Hampshire has recycled more than 98% of the rubble from the recently demolished DeMeritt Hall. Most of the masonry will be used as road fill, some of the wood was in good enough condition to sell, and much of the flooring will be re-milled and go back into the new building's floors. The new building will incorporate numerous energy efficient features as well.
SUNY ESF Introduces 2 Environmental Studies Grad Programs
The SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry has established a master of science and a master of professional studies, both in environmental studies. The research focused MS program offers students an interdisciplinary understanding of environmental issues and the problems that underlie them, and is intended for students with a wide range of undergraduate degrees. The MPS program is a career-focused, non-thesis degree with less emphasis on research. It is aimed at professionals already working in various environmental fields. Both programs focus on the core areas of sustainability, policy, governance, conflict resolution, advocacy, ethics, and perception and behavior.
Owens CC Offers Green Technology Program
Owens Community College (OH) Workforce and Community Services is offering a new Green Technology program. The program is designed to raise awareness of renewable energy technologies and provide students with enhanced knowledge about green living.
U Florida Commits to Green Cleaning Practices
The University of Florida's Building Services Department of the Physical Plant Division announced its commitment to green cleaning practices throughout all of the campus buildings. UF Building Services and the Office of Sustainability have developed greener training programs for custodial supervisors and staff. The training will include discussion on minimizing energy consumption, recycling, waste reduction, ergonomics, the importance of proper maintenance of entryway matting, and other sustainable practices.
Laramie County CC Named Energy Innovator of the Year
Laramie County Community College (WY) has been named the Energy Innovator of the Year, an award presented by the Renewable Energy Coalition of Wyoming. The award is result of LCCC's leadership in the state regarding renewable energy. This leadership includes the installation of its own 100 foot wind turbine, energy-efficient construction practices, and the new Wind Technician Program.
UC San Francisco Expands Composting Program
Retail Services at the University of California, San Francisco will introduce a "Going Greener" campaign, which will expand the current program to provide composting options to customers and the general public. Composting, recycling, and garbage bins complete with detailed signage will be made available in the plaza. Campus vendors will also participate by composting their compostable to-go ware. The program will be piloted for six months before it will be introduced to other campus locations.
Stony Brook U's 'Earthstock' Receives Student Affairs Award
The EarthStock program series at Stony Brook University (NY) received the 2007 Outstanding Student Affairs Award for Emerging Programs. EarthStock is a series of programs that educate the campus and local community on the environment and sustainability. The event, chosen from more than 40 entries, is designed to raise awareness and help provide solutions for climate change and global warming by involving local, regional and national government and business leaders in the discussion. It was started as a grassroots effort by students and staff to celebrate Earth Day in 2002, and is now a weeklong event featuring 32 departments on campus.
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.
Ferrum College Creates Environmental Science Scholarship Fund
Ferrum College (VA)has established a scholarship fund for high school students planning to pursue studies in environmental science. West Development Group, a manufacturer of roofing products, made the initial contribution to the "Scientia Terrae Causa" (Knowledge for the Earth) Environmental Science Scholarship Fund and will donate a percentage of all future sales of its environmental products to the fund.
Conscious Lifestyle Innovative Idea Competition
Conscious Lifestyle is accepting applications for its 2008 Ventures program, which offers $1000 in start-up funding, web space, monthly skill building workshops, and personalized support to the team with the most innovative idea on how to sustainably make students and their institution more socially responsible. Applicants must be full time students, have leadership and/or volunteer experience, and be able to work with an adult ally and other community leaders. Application deadline is February 15, 2008.
U Oregon Promises Free Tuition to Low-Income Incoming Freshman
University of Oregon has announced PathwayOregon, a plan to cover tuition and fees for lower-income Oregonians entering the University as freshmen next fall. The plan guarantees that qualified Oregonians from lower income families can attend the UO tuition-free by covering any remaining tuition costs not picked up by federal and state financial aid. It also provides students with comprehensive academic support and in some cases room and board. Lower income Oregonians who are eligible for Federal Pell Grants and are entering the UO next fall as freshman qualify for the program.