U Sussex to Eliminate Single-Use Plastics

(U.K.) The university recently committed to eliminating avoidable single-use plastics from catering, stationery, laboratories, residence halls, offices and events by 2025. Where the use of plastics is unavoidable, the university has pledged to encourage the use of recycled plastics, and support manufacturers that make products from locally sourced waste plastics.

London School Economics Becomes Carbon Neutral Verified

(U.K.) The London School of Economics and Political Science recently announced carbon neutrality that was independently verified for the academic year 2020/21, for all its measured emissions. This was accomplished by a range of energy efficiency, and by procuring all the electricity from 100 percent renewable sources since 2009.

Iowa State U Approves 900 KW Solar Farm

The Iowa board of regents recently approved a motion to proceed with the development of a 900-kilowatt solar farm. Under the public-private partnership, Iowa State will receive renewable energy credits generated by the solar farm, which will offset a portion of the university’s annual carbon emissions.

Dickinson College Announces $100,000 Prize Winner

Announced during the COP26 U.N. Climate Conference in Glasgow, Dickinson presented the Sam Rose ’58 and Julie Walters Prize at Dickinson College for Global Environmental Activism to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The $100,000 Rose-Walters Prize is bestowed annually on an individual or organization making a defining difference to advance responsible action on behalf of the planet, its resources and people. The 2022 prize honors the IPCC’s work, including producing and communicating scientific knowledge that is the foundation of informed and effective action on climate change.

Yale U Announces Plans to Address Ties to Slavery

The university outlined initial actions it will take in response to what it has learned about its entanglements with slavery and its responsibilities in the present. These will include the creation of permanent memorialization of the enslaved and indigenous people who played vital roles in the community; a meaningful increase in the university’s direct financial support for its home city of New Haven; and collaborations with the Historically Black and Tribal Colleges and Universities.

AASHE Recognizes 2021 Sustainability Award Finalists

AASHE recently revealed the 2021 AASHE Sustainability Award finalists. Selected from over 360 submissions, there were 54 finalists across five categories, including the inaugural Racial Equity and Sustainability Collaborations Award. On Dec. 9, attend the Sustainability Awards ceremony for a live reveal of the 12 winners.

AASHE Announces Top Performers in 2021 SCI

The 2021 Sustainable Campus Index (SCI) recognizes top-performing colleges and universities in 17 sustainability impact areas and overall by institution type as measured by the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS). The report also includes innovative and high-impact institutional highlights. Top performers overall by institution type are Dawson College (Associate), Colby College (Baccalaureate), Thompson Rivers University (Master’s), and Colorado State University (Doctoral/research). Details about the 25 top-performing institutions can be found within the report.

PLAN Announces Inaugural Top 10 Zero Waste Campuses

The Post-Landfill Action Network (PLAN) released recently the first annual list of Top 10 Zero Waste Campuses in the U.S., as assessed by PLAN’s Atlas Zero Waste Certification Program. Atlas is a holistic assessment framework for measuring waste reduction on college and university campuses.

U Kentucky to Purchase 55 MW of Solar Power

The university recently entered into an agreement with a regional utility company to purchase 44 percent of the power output of a 125-megawatt solar facility. This power purchase is estimated to cover approximately one-third of the electricity consumed by campus.

National U Ireland Galway Achieves STARS Gold

(Ireland) The National University of Ireland, Galway is the second institution from Ireland to earn a STARS rating. Points of distinction in the university's sustainability journey include a green labs initiative, which seeks to certify all labs on campus by 2025; networking and collaborating with other sectors on energy efficiency and savings; and an award-winning environmental education program.

U New Hampshire Renews STARS Platinum

The university's STARS Platinum rating was first achieved in 2018 and renewed in mid-October 2021. Points of distinction include weaving sustainability across the university's strategic framework, peer-to-peer sustainability learning programs, and sustainable investing and governance.

Princeton Review Releases Guide to 2022 Green Colleges

The Princeton Review recently released its 12th annual Guide to Green Colleges, profiling 420 universities and colleges with a commitment to sustainability. Of the 420 schools selected for the guide, 391 are in the U.S., 26 in Canada, one in Ecuador, one in Egypt, and one in Greece. Twenty-seven of the 420 schools earned a green rating score of 99 (the highest possible score).