Wilfrid Laurier U Opens Sustainability Office, Hires Coordinator

Wilfrid Laurier University (ON) has opened an office on campus devoted to environmental sustainability initiatives and has hired a sustainability coordinator. The office, which was created with funding from the student green fee, will work with students, faculty, staff, and alumni to improve Laurier's environmental impact. The University has hired Sarah English to head the new office. As the campus' first sustainability coordinator, English will seek to enable communication and foster collaboration between student, staff, and faculty environmental initiatives on campus. English is a recent graduate from the University of Waterloo where she received a BES in Environmental Planning, led a student alternative transportation group, and sat on the board of the UW Sustainability Project.

U Notre Dame Publishes First Annual Sustainability Report

The University of Notre Dame (IN) has released "Sustainability at Notre Dame 2008-2009," its first annual sustainability report. The report describes initiatives undertaken in each of the seven focus areas of the Office of Sustainability: power generation, design and construction, waste reduction, transportation, procurement, food services, and water. Highlights include a 7.5 percent reduction in total carbon emissions from energy usage and a 2.5 percent reduction in total electricity usage, the $4 million Energy Conservation Measures program, construction of the first campus buildings expecting LEED certification, a campus-wide shift to recycled-content paper, and the initiation of a comprehensive Game Day Recycling program.

Western Illinois U Hires Sustainability Coordinator

Western Illinois University has named Mandi Green as its first ever sustainability coordinator. In her role as sustainability coordinator, which began December 7, 2009, Green develops and implements initiatives involving energy, transportation, waste management, recycling, green purchasing, and more, as well as prepares the required sustainability reports for the state of Illinois. Green will also work with student and other university groups to promote and raise awareness of Western's sustainability initiatives.

31 New Campuses Complete Climate Action Plans

30 new campuses have submitted Climate Action Plans (CAP) as part of the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) since the last update in the AASHE Bulletin on September 28, 2009. The plans illustrate the specific steps schools are taking to reach climate neutrality. The CAP is the second major reporting requirement of the Commitment and is due within two years of signing. New CAPs were submitted by: University of Colorado at Boulder; University of Maryland, College Park; University of California, Los Angeles; Duke University (NC); University of Nevada, Reno; University of Wisconsin-Stout; University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh; Maharishi University of Management (IA); University of New Mexico; University of Maryland, Baltimore; University of South Carolina, Salkehatchie; University of South Carolina, Beaufort; University of Massachusetts Medical School; Eastern Connecticut State University; University of Houston, Victoria (TX); Furman University (SC); Luther College (IA); Clark University (MA); McDaniel College (MD); Franklin & Marshall College (PA); Centre College (KY); Hamilton College (NY); Goddard College (VT); Bowdoin College (ME); Wilson Community College (NC); State University of New York at Binghamton; Towson University (MD); Weber State University (UT); Houston Community College (TX); Framingham State College (MA); and Santa Fe Community College (NM). The submitted plans can be viewed through the ACUPCC Reporting System. In related news, Stanford University (CA) has also completed its Climate Action Plan.

University System of Ohio Establishes Green Jobs Advisory Panel

The University System of Ohio has established the Ohio Green Pathways Advisory Council. The new committee is charged with developing a comprehensive understanding of green workforce demand, building and expanding relationships with green industry leaders, and identifying strategies to create and expand new green opportunities in Ohio. The 20-member panel is comprised of leaders from business and industry, higher education institutions, and state agencies, all representing green workforce and industry in Ohio. After the panel’s first meeting on January 13, 2010, it will recommend to the Chancellor ways to expand access to affordable educational pathways for green jobs and market Ohio's green job pathways as an economic development tool for the State.

Butler CC Holds First Sustainability Committee Meeting

Butler Community College (KS) has formed a sustainability committee that is comprised of students, faculty, staff, and local experts. Members of the committee will discuss the steps necessary to make Butler more sustainable. During the first meeting, attendees identified low hanging fruit, such as turning lights off, as well as larger projects such as developing a sustainability plan and conducting an energy audit.

U California San Diego Opens Sustainability Resource Center

The University of California, San Diego has opened a Sustainability Resource Center. The Center houses the campus sustainability coordinator, the student-funded Student Sustainability Collective, and other sustainability staff. Its central campus location will serve as a place for students to learn about green jobs, courses related to sustainability, and tips on living sustainably.

U Colorado Board of Regents Approves Sustainability Resolution

The University of Colorado Board of Regents has approved a campus sustainability resolution. The resolution directs the president and chancellors to incorporate LEED standards in university buildings wherever possible; to ensure that the campuses complete the development of their respective comprehensive plans to achieve climate neutrality as outlined in the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment by June 30, 2010; to incorporate into their comprehensive plans the Governor's Colorado Climate Action Plan and the Greening of the State Government Executive Orders; and to report to the Board of Regents the progress on a bi-annual basis.

U North Carolina Adopts Sustainability Policy

The University of North Carolina Board of Governors has adopted the UNC Sustainability Policy. The new Policy, which is in response to the UNC Tomorrow recommendation that the University assume a leadership role in addressing the state's environmental challenges, establishes sustainability as a core value guiding institutional operations, planning, capital construction, and purchasing practices.

Clarion U Establishes Sustainability Institute

Clarion University (PA) has announced the formation of its Sustainability Institute. The Institute will be self-sufficient, have faculty support, supply information to the University and local area interest groups; bring in resident scholars to focus their research on sustainability; promote faculty, graduate, and undergraduate research; provide opportunities for internships; offer CEU credits for attendance at conferences; and provide certification on sustainable development and sustainability.

Furman U Adopts Sustainability Master Plan

The Furman University (SC) Board of Trustees has adopted a sustainability master plan, part of which includes a climate action plan to make the campus carbon neutral by 2026. The creation of the "Sustainable Furman" took eighteen months and had been a university-wide effort, involving over a hundred students, professors, staff members, trustees, alumni, and community leaders. The plan is organized around eight broad goals, each of which addresses key aspects of the University’s mission and operations. Those include expanding and enhancing curricular and co-curricular opportunities related to sustainability, encouraging campus and community participation in energy conservation and energy efficiency efforts, and broadening Furman’s national leadership role in the promotion of sustainability

Quinnipiac U Announces Sustainability Plan, Featured in NY Times

Quinnipiac University’s (CT) York Campus has established a new $4 million sustainability plan that includes both solar and wind installations. The plan includes a wind garden that will contain 25 vertical-axis wind turbines and 1,232 photovoltaic solar panels that will be on the roof of one of the residence halls. In related news, The New York Times has published an article on Quinnipiac's new wind garden that features wind turbines as art. The new park, called Windspires, is meant to provide serenity to visitors. Its 25 turbines are expected to produce a combined 32,000 kWh a year.

Stanford U Announces $250 Million Energy Use Initiative

Stanford University (CA) has unveiled an Energy and Climate Plan that includes a $250 million initiative to reduce energy consumption. The Plan is expected to reduce university carbon emissions by as much as 20 percent below 1990 levels. A majority of the goal will be attained through energy conservation measures. A two-year engineering study identified many areas where significant savings could be made by changing and modifying the way energy is currently being used. The $250 million initiative is expected to save about $639 million between 2010 and 2050.

U North Carolina Publishes 2009 Campus Sustainability Report

The University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill has published its "2009 Campus Sustainability Report." Highlights of the report include: UNC's award of federal stimulus funding to create an Energy Frontier Research Center focused on the next generation of photovoltaic cells and solar fuels; the university dedication of a new reclaimed water system, which helped it win a national award for water reuse; the new Education Center at the North Carolina Botanical Garden, which is expected to receive LEED Platinum certification; UNC's Climate Action Plan with a strategy for achieving climate neutrality by 2050; and UNC receiving an A- on the campus sustainability report card issued by the Sustainable Endowments Institute.

U California System Expands Sustainability Policy

The University of California has expanded its sustainability policy, raising the bar on green building requirements and establishing a more comprehensive sustainable food service policy. The Policy on Sustainable Practices, which applies to all 10 UC campuses, the five UC medical centers, and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, has been revised to require that: by 2020, at least 20 percent of all food purchased by UC be designated as "sustainable," as defined by the food service work group, based on third-party certifications for organic, locally-grown and other measures; at least one dining facility per UC location must be certified as a green business, through a city or county certification program or through the Green Seal or Green Restaurant Association program; each campus must provide students with educational materials explaining the issues related to sustainable food products and food service business practices; and campus departments, organizations, groups and individuals must engage in activities with the surrounding community in support of common sustainability goals.

Skidmore College Concludes First Garden Growing Season

Skidmore College (NY) has concluded the growing season of its first-ever student garden. The garden, which was initiated by a student, was created to offer an experiential learning opportunity surrounding the ecology of food. A total of 1,138 pounds of vegetables–including an array of summer and winter squash, lettuce, peas, peppers, cucumbers, eggplant, leeks, carrots, beets, and radishes–were picked and prepared over the summer and early fall. To foster production, the student gardeners employed organic practices such as composting, weeding by hand, and not using pesticides.

U Texas System Publishes Sustainability Practices Policy

The University of Texas System has published a formal policy on Sustainability Practices. The policy, which has been approved by the System’s Board of Regents, mentions its commitment to energy saving, reduction in carbon emissions, and sustainable design principles. The policy directs each institution within the System to develop a policy on sustainability in its master plan and includes a definition of sustainability and sections on curricular integration, endowment transparency, community outreach, environmentally preferable purchasing practices, and sustainable transportation practices.

Appalachian State U Opens New Office of Sustainability

Appalachian State University (NC) has formed an Office of Sustainability. The Office hopes to engage and educate the community, increase efficiency and effectiveness of resource use, and promote a healthy, balanced community. Other plans include developing an annual sustainability report for the University, updating the campus greenhouse gas inventory, and making sustainable transportation a top priority.

Memorial U Signs Sustainability Declaration

Memorial University (NL) has committed the institution to a greener climate on campus. The Sustainability Declaration, an overarching statement intended to define Memorial’s commitment to sustainable principles, was signed by President Dr. Christopher Loomis and other senior officials. The Declaration commits MU to promote a community committed to sustainability within and beyond the University and to develop a comprehensive and collaborative action plan with measurable outcomes. The document was also signed by several students.

ACUPCC Signatories Submit Public Climate Action Plans

Several U.S. campuses have submitted Climate Action Plans (CAP) as part of the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment. The plans illustrate the specific steps schools are taking to reach climate neutrality. The CAP is the second major reporting requirement of the Commitment and is due within two years of signing. September 15, 2009 was the first deadline for the Commitment's original members. The submitted plans can be viewed through the ACUPCC Reporting System.

The King's U College Launches Sustainability Committee

The King's University College (AB) has launched a new sustainability committee. The Campus Sustainability Coalition, which seeks to advance sustainability throughout the campus, is made up of twelve members that include students, staff, faculty, and the president. Coalition members have divided into three task forces that focus on researching the most effective methods to conduct annual environmental audits, integrating campus sustainability into all aspects of the University’s strategic plan, and seeking out external funding opportunities.

Marshall U Creates Sustainability Department, Appoints Director

Marshall University (WV) has created a new Sustainability Department and has appointed Margie J. Phillips as its new director. The new Sustainability Department will seek to help the University look for ways to conserve water and energy, reduce waste, and incorporate green technologies and materials into its planning and operations. Phillips has served as Marshall's energy analyst for more than 12 years.

Stony Brook U Hospital Pledges to Reduce Env'l Impact

Stony Brook University (NY) Hospital has become the first hospital in the U.S. to pledge to reduce its environmental impact through an agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The agreement signed by the two entities outlines goals and strategies for energy and water conservation, solid waste management, green design, and the use of environmentally-friendly products. Stony Brook University Hospital will track the results of these efforts and submit reports to EPA every six months.

U Illinois Chicago Releases Sustainability Report

The University of Illinois at Chicago Office of Sustainability has published its first annual report on the sustainability of the campus as a whole. The report utilizes indicators from AASHE's Sustainability Tracking, Assessment and Rating System (STARS) and is intended as a frank assessment of UIC's strengths in the area of sustainability, to provide some metrics to track the progress towards is sustainability goals, and to identify areas that need more attention and action. UIC collected data as one of nearly 70 pilot institutions for the AASHE STARS program.

Oklahoma City CC Establishes Green Task Force

Oklahoma City Community College has established a Green Task Force that aims to reduce waste, conserve water, and start a recycling program on campus. The group will also encourage students, faculty, and staff to be more involved with environment protection initiatives. Funding for Task Force projects will come from outside grants and campus funds.

Raritan Valley CC Sings Env'l Stewardship Agreement with EPA

Raritan Valley Community College (NJ) has signed an environmental stewardship agreement with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The agreement, which was signed June 16, pledges the College’s commitment to reduce its carbon footprint and to continuous improvement using EPA programs to develop policies, practices, and specifications for environmental efficiency standards. It also commits RVCC to increasing stewardship awareness; remaining current with EPA regulations and guidelines; increasing involvement and recognition of its stakeholders in environmental sustainability programs; partnering with local government on environmental initiatives; and addressing environmental concerns swiftly.

Wilfrid Laurier U to Open Office of Sustainability

Wilfrid Laurier University (ON) has announced plans to open an Office of Sustainability on campus. After increasing the student green fee from $0.50 to $5.00 a semester, WLU is now able to fund a sustainability office, as well as hire a sustainability officer. The office will provide resources for students working to improve the University's sustainability performance.

Meredith College Approves Sustainability Plan

Meredith College (NC) has approved a plan for integrating sustainability into the College's practices in education and daily operations. Known as the College's "Greenprint," the new plan includes three main goals: to educate the campus community about sustainability; to model environmental responsibility in daily operations; and to integrate sustainability into campus administrative structure. Each of the goals include several desired outcomes, including weaving sustainability into the curriculum where applicable; minimizing the amount of waste generated by the campus; and using sustainability to inform financial decisions on campus. Students, faculty, staff, administrators and alumnae participated in the development of the plan, led by Meredith Sustainability Coordinator Laura Fieselman.

Pomona College Updates Env'l Policy, Establishes Sustainability Office

The Pomona College (CA) Board of Trustees has approved an update to the College's Statement of Environmental Policy. The new policy explicitly states the College's commitment to sustainability and sets new standards and requirements for decision-making in four key areas: capital projects, budgetary and financial planning, education and research, and assessment and review. It also formally creates the Sustainability Integration Office, headed by Pomona's Director of Sustainability, Bowen Patterson.

Virginia Tech Adopts Climate Action and Sustainability Plan

Virginia Tech has adopted a 14 point Climate Action Commitment and Sustainability Plan which calls for the pursuit of LEED Silver certification or better for all new buildings and renovations, a 35 percent recycling rate by 2012, a target for reduction of campus greenhouse gas emissions to 80 percent below 1990 emission level by 2050, reductions in electric usage, the creation of an office of sustainability, and improvements in transportation efficiency. To ensure progress towards goals are met, the university will conduct annual assessments to measure actual progress each year and release these reports publicly.

U Richmond Becomes 100th Signatory of Talloires Decl on Civic Roles

The University of Richmond (VA) has signed the Talloires Declaration on the Civic Roles and Social Responsibilities of Higher Education (which is separate from the Talloires Declaration on Sustainability), making it the 100th worldwide institution to do so. The Talloires Network began in 2005 when the Declaration was drafted by 29 university presidents, rectors, and vice chancellors from 23 countries. By signing this international declaration, the University of Richmond has committed to educating for social responsibility and civic engagement, and to strengthening the application of university resources to the needs of local and global communities.

Manchester College Launches Sustainability Website

The Manchester College (IN) Green Campus Initiative has launched a new website. The site provides green tips, lists current campus sustainability projects, and posts the College's sustainability policy. The site also has an on-line meter of electric and gas usage on the campus and links for activism opportunities and green jobs.

Benedictine U Joins Illinois Sustainability University Compact

Benedictine University has joined the Illinois Sustainable University Compact, an organization of universities and community colleges across Illinois which, in conjunction with the Illinois Green Government Coordination Council, is committed to creating a greener, healthier environment. In joining the Compact, BU has agreed to such objectives as purchasing renewable energy, implementing green building practices, developing sustainable transportation options, improving water conservation efforts, and incorporating sustainable dining practices.

Pepperdine U Launches Center for Sustainability

Pepperdine University (CA) has announced the creation of the Center for Sustainability. The new Center, which has also launched a new website, seeks to advance sustainability at Pepperdine through the implementation of sustainable measures, the communication of successes and challenges, and the education of the university community. The Center for Sustainability has already implemented several new initiatives including switching to all recycled paper towels, biodegradable to-go ecotainers in cafeterias, and composting of food waste. Other new efforts include the availability of rental cars through Hertz Car Sharing and expanded e-waste recycling and battery collection.

U Illinois Chicago Signs Talloires Declaration

The University of Illinois at Chicago has signed the Talloires Declaration. By signing this international declaration, UIC commits to implement a 10-point action plan to incorporate sustainability and environmental literacy into its teaching, research, operations, and outreach.

U Kansas Students Complete Campus Climate Action Plan

A class of 12 University of Kansas graduate students has completed a Climate Action Plan for the campus. The students spent one semester collecting data on the University's carbon footprint and researched ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The report suggests that the University monitor buildings’ temperatures when they are not in use, place solar panels on suitable surfaces, replace light fixtures with more efficient ones, and upgrade storm windows and awnings. The plan also recommends that students conduct energy audits of campus facilities as part of their course work and that the University should better educate incoming freshmen on alternative transportation options and offer more public transportation to commuters.

Bucknell U Releases Environmental Assessment

Bucknell University (PA) has released "A Comprehensive Environmental Assessment of Bucknell University." The goal of the document is to establish a baseline of existing conditions, provide a basis for improved sustainability, promote environmental awareness through the assessment process, and create an educational resource. The 226-page document covers administration and policy, education, energy, water, waste, purchasing, dining, built environment, and landscape.

U Delaware Releases Climate Action Plan

The University of Delaware has released a climate action plan that includes a commitment to reducing its carbon emissions 20 percent by 2020. UD has already completed an initial greenhouse gas inventory and has announced that its first step will be to make its 350 campus buildings more energy efficient. In addition, the University has set interim goals to reach a 5 percent reduction by 2012 and a 10 percent reduction by 2015. UD officials estimate that while the plan will cost $20 million over 10 years to implement, the energy savings will exceed $50 million.

Vanderbilt U Completes Env'l Commitment Statement, GHG Inventory

Vanderbilt University (TN) has adopted an Environmental Commitment Statement. The Statement affirms Vanderbilt's commitment to promoting lifelong learning about sustainability best practices for the benefit of the Vanderbilt community. The Statement includes Vanderbilt’s assurance that it will consistently implement, monitor, evaluate, and improve processes. The University has also completed and released its first Greenhouse Gas Inventory.

Dalhousie U Announces Sustainability Statement and Policy

Dalhousie University (NS) has adopted a Sustainability Statement and a Sustainability Policy that are meant to provide directional guidance to the university community. The Sustainability Statement and Policy provide context for specific operational policies, plans, and programs to be supported or developed. The Policy specifically outlines goals that address areas such as enhancing values and knowledge; decreasing natural resource use (energy, water, products) and associated waste and emissions; increasing use of renewable energy; enhancing the campus ecosystem; and increasing sustainable transportation.

Molloy College Launches Sustainability Institute

Molloy College (NY) has launched the Sustainability Institute which will provide community education on issues related to sustainability and “green” living, as well as policy analysis and recommendations. There will also be a student education component that will begin in the fall of 2009 with the incoming first-year students at Molloy.

University System of Ohio Launches Sustainability Website

The University System of Ohio has launched a sustainability website. The new site includes sustainability-related news and events from the system's campuses.

Warren Wilson College Launches Sustainability Website

Warren Wilson College (NC) has launched a new sustainability website. The website contains information on campus initiatives and a list of sustainability-related awards and recognitions, sustainability-related committees, and upcoming events.

Central College Announces Ctr for Global Sustainability Education

Central College (IA) has announced the creation of a Center for Global Sustainability Education to be housed in the College’s new green education/psychology building scheduled to open in the fall. The center will house SUSTAIN, the Central College campus sustainability working group that provides resources and support for students and volunteers working on sustainability projects and community-based service-learning. The Prairie Project, the main ongoing initiative of the new center, will provide professional training and sustainability curriculum development support for area teachers and community partners.

U Victoria Adopts Sustainability Policy

The University of Victoria (BC) Board of Governors has approved a campus sustainability policy. The policy is an overarching framework that provides a common understanding of UVic’s commitment to sustainability in teaching, research, operations, and community partnerships. A comprehensive five-year sustainability action plan for campus operations has also been developed as a first step in implementing the policy. It provides goals and direction for a wide range of actions within eight inter-related topic areas: energy and climate; transportation; purchasing; governance, decision-making, and sustainability resources; buildings and renovations; grounds, food and urban agriculture; waste management; and water management.

U California Berkeley Releases 2009 Climate Action Plan

The University of California, Berkeley has released its 2009 Climate Action Plan (CAP), which documents how the campus plans to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by one-third and eventually achieve climate neutrality. The Plan, which will be updated annually by the Office of Sustainability, examines how far the campus has come in the last two years to meet it emissions reduction goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2014.

Brock U Completes Sustainability Assessment

Brock University (ON) has completed a 25-page Sustainability Audit. The document includes assessments in the areas of water consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, land use, governance, health, and ethical purchasing. The University used the Campus Sustainability Assessment Framework, a Canadian-based assessment tool.

Northern Kentucky U Releases Master Plan

Northern Kentucky University has released its "Master Plan 2009." One of the goals of the Master Plan is to "create a sustainable campus which reflects the highest standards of excellence." Specific initiatives include protecting sensitive habitat and environmental areas; installing rain gardens and green roofs; and mandating that all future buildings pursue LEED certification. The plan also envisions adding 2.1 million square feet of green space.

Texas A&M Opens Office of Sustainability

Texas A&M University has opened an Office of Sustainability. The Office hopes to work with university stakeholders to develop, coordinate, and enhance current sustainability initiatives. The Office has specific plans to work to integrate sustainability into the campus' curriculum, expand current recycling initiatives, and improve alternative transportation options on campus.

Luther College Strategic Plan Features Sustainability

The Luther College (IA) Board of Regents has approved the College's Sesquicentennial Strategic Plan for 2008-2012. One of the three strategic imperatives of the plan is to connect sustainability, stewardship, and global citizenship. One of the goals in the five-year plan is to cut the college's carbon footprint in half. Already, the college has reduced its campus carbon footprint by 15 percent and plans to make further investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy systems to reach the 50 percent goal. The plan also focuses on ways to reach the goals of the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment. In addition, $5 million (10 percent) of the Sesquicentennial Fund seeks endowment support for a new Center for Sustainable Communities. The goal of the center is to catalyze change and be an educational resource for businesses, churches, governments and communities in the region. Luther College has already created a new Campus Sustainability Council as a result of the plan.