Colorado Mountain College Installs Solar Array & Battery Storage Facility

The new 4.5-megawatt solar array is grid-tied and includes five megawatts of battery storage. The power company that operates the grid will retire renewable energy credits on the college’s behalf, in a quantity sufficient to offset 100 percent of the electricity use of three CMC campuses at Aspen, Spring Valley and Vail Valley.

U Southern California to Obtain Solar Electricity for 25% of Consumption

The new 20-year agreement will provide a quarter of the university's electricity with power from a solar farm in Mojave. In addition to lowering its carbon footprint, the university will contribute approximately $180,000 per year to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power Clean Energy Adder program that supports disadvantaged communities in and around USC’s campuses.

Brandeis U Launches Year of Climate Action

Organized by the Brandeis Sustainability Committee, the Year of Climate Action aims to raise awareness for climate change as a social justice issue. Planned activities and initiatives throughout the year focus on institutional priorities, such as introducing new organic land management practices and a decarbonization study, and curricular programming, including sustainability course development funding and curated teaching resources. Other features of the year include a theater, a climate organizer-in-residence, local environmental justice events, an eco-anxiety support group, and club funding for student-designed programs.

U Arkansas Signs PPA on 5.1 MW Photovoltaic Array

The newly signed power purchase agreement (PPA) is for a 5.1-megawatt photovoltaic system that is expected to cover approximately 6.3 percent of the campus electrical energy needs. The solar project will be installed on 25 acres off campus and is expected to be completed by Q1 2024.

Johns Hopkins U Procures Solar Electricity to Cover Two-Thirds Electricity Use

Johns Hopkins recently joined two other commercial customers in purchasing energy from a utility-scale photovoltaic development, allowing the university to achieve its goal to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 51 percent three years ahead of its target.

U Northampton Divests From Fossil Fuels

(U.K.) As part of the fossil free declaration, the university has updated its Responsible Investment Portfolio to exclude fossil fuel companies. The policy states that investment managers must consider "protection of the global environment, its climate and its biodiversity including, but not limited to, the reduction and future elimination of fossil fuel exploration and production".

U Sherbrooke Achieves Carbon Neutrality

The university's recent carbon neutrality accomplishment was achieved by reducing greenhouse gas emissions through energy efficiency and renewable energy sources, then offsetting the remainder through certified carbon credits. The announcement comes eight years ahead of the university's carbon neutral goal.

U Tasmania Releases GHG Emissions Reduction Strategic Plan

The university's newly released plan includes a target to reduce gross greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50 percent by 2030. The plan includes reducing both direct and indirect scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions.

Stanford U Receives $1B for School of Sustainability

Stanford’s first new school in 70 years will launch this fall as the Stanford Doerr School of Sustainability, recognizing a $1.1 billion gift from John and Ann Doerr. The school will have academic departments that advance subject understanding, interdisciplinary institutes that innovate across fields, and an accelerator focused on developing near-term policy and technology solutions. (Image credit: Edward Caldwell)

Smith College Begins Ground-Source Heating & Cooling Project

Smith College will break ground in May on a ground-source energy project that will lower the college’s carbon emissions by an estimated 90 percent, allowing the college to become carbon neutral by 2030.

U Massachusetts Amherst Announces 100% Renewable Power By 2032 Goal

The university on Earth Day unveiled UMass Carbon Zero–a vision to power the university's 1,500-acre flagship campus with 100 percent renewable energy by approximately 2032. Among other changes, the university plans to transition from fossil fuel-based steam and electricity production to a low-temperature hot water heating system paired with ground-source heating and cooling, and to use a combination of on-site battery-stored solar energy and purchased clean energy.

Connecticut College Adopts 2030 Carbon Neutrality Goal

At an Earth Day celebration, the college president announced the 2030 goal as well as pledging an environmental, social and governance approach to the college's investment strategy.

Hamilton College Sets 2030 Carbon Neutrality Goal

The college's board of trustees voted this spring to set a new carbon neutral date of 2030, 20 years earlier than the original target of 2050. The college plans to invest in energy upgrades to campus buildings, manage parts of campus to increase carbon sequestration in its lands, and continue to study and implement additional opportunities for emission reductions.

Bentley U Commits to Carbon Neutrality By 2030

The university's new Sustainability and Climate Action Plan focuses on climate resilience, equity, education and further reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. The plan sets a goal to purchase 100 percent of its electricity to power the campus from renewable sources by 2026 and to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030.

U Sydney to Switch to 100% Renewable Electricity

(Australia) The university recently signed a five-year contract to deliver electricity from photovoltaic panels to cover 100 percent of its electricity use. The contract begins July 1.

Virginia Tech Begins 2.1 MW Solar Electric Project

The new project involves 2.1 megawatts of solar arrays on seven Blacksburg campus buildings. A third party will develop and initially own and maintain the arrays and sell the power to the Virginia Tech Electric Service through a power purchase agreement for six years. After that, Virginia Tech plans to purchase and maintain the systems for the remainder of their 30-year useful lives.

Bates College Releases 'Sustainability Roadmap'

Bates College recently published a Sustainability Roadmap for this decade that sets the goal to sequester more emissions than the college emits by 2030. The roadmap sets forth new Passive House building standards, 100 percent renewable energy targets, and climate-focused coursework/research goals.

Stanford U Produces 100% Renewable Energy

A 63-megawatt solar photovoltaic plant came online in March, along with a 200-megawatt battery energy storage system, that enables the university to produce more renewable energy than it uses. Excess energy generated goes onto the California electric grid.

U Exeter Sets 2030 Carbon Net Zero Target

(U.K.) The university announced recently an updated net zero emissions goal of 2030. The new target covers direct emissions (scope 1 & 2) and also includes scope 3 (indirect emissions caused by the university's activities, such as purchases). Scope 3 emissions are approximately 72 percent of the university's total emissions.

U Pittsburgh Publishes Inaugural Climate Action Plan

The University of Pittsburgh’s Pittsburgh campus published recently its first Climate Action Plan outlining its strategy, approach and details to achieve carbon neutrality by 2037.

U Virginia Aligns Building Standards With Carbon Neutrality Goals

The University of Virginia recently updated its building standards required for all future construction projects to further the institution’s progress in meeting its goals to be carbon neutral by 2030 and fossil-fuel free by 2050. Starting this year, new buildings are restricted from adding infrastructure for the on-site combustion of fossil fuels, such as natural gas, for heating or other uses, unless required for safety or emergency back-up systems.

EPA Releases Top 30 Green Power Usage List

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently released the top 30 college and university Green Power Partners, as ranked by green power use. The University of California, Arizona State University and the University of Iowa are the top three ranked (respectively) higher education institutions for their usage of green power. Ten institutions on the list purchase green power in an amount equal to or exceeding 100 percent of their institution-wide electricity use.

Colorado State U to Launch Air Travel Offset Program

Starting Feb. 1, the university will assess a $10 offset fee for domestic air travel trips and $20 for international air travel trips on university business. Sponsored research travel and trips paid for with personal funds will be exempt.