U Penn & Temple U Raise Security Guard Pay & Sick Leave

The University of Pennsylvania and Temple University (PA) recently granted AlliedBarton security guards up to three days in paid sick leave. Penn also increased the security guards' pay from $9.70 to $15 per hour.

U Saskatchewan Completes GHG Inventory

The University of Saskatchewan recently completed its greenhouse gas inventory, which was initiated to establish a baseline total for campus GHG emissions. The survey found that the University's 2006 CO2 emissions amounted to 198,000 tons, which is up 4.5% since 1990. The report also found that, at 80% of the total, purchased electricity was the largest source of GHGs.

U Southern California Forms Sustainability Steering Committee

The University of Southern California recently created a 12 member Sustainability Steering Committee. The group is made up of students, faculty, administrators, and staff from all areas of the institution and is charged with maintaining current environmental initiatives and defining economic, social, and environmental opportunities for the campus.

UT Architecture College Pledges Carbon Neutrality by 2010

The College of Architecture and Design at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, has committed to make its own building as well as all its studio projects more environmentally friendly. By a unanimous vote of the faculty, the college has adopted a plan to achieve a carbon-neutral design community and include the elimination or reduction of the need for fossil fuel as a central tenet in its design education. This plan is part of the 2010 Imperative, a challenge issued to colleges of design across the U.S. to incorporate environmental principles by 2010. Strategies involving waterless plumbing fixtures and occupancy sensors for lights already are being implemented. Future plans include the purchase of carbon offsets and potential LEED Existing Building certification.

U Vermont to Form Commission and Office of Sustainability

The University of Vermont recently announced that it will form a Commission on Sustainability and open an Office of Sustainability. The Commission will make strategic recommendations about policies and activities requiring significant operational changes or allocation of financial and other resources within the University. Its first charge will be to create a Climate Neutrality Working Group that will develop a plan within two years for reaching climate neutrality at UVM. The Office of Sustainability will support the Commission's development of an overall environmental sustainability strategy, track performance indicators and best practices, oversee the selection and implementation of the best ideas for reducing environmental impacts, and educate and involved the campus and Vermont community.

1100 Campuses Focus the Nation on Global Warming Solutions

On Jan. 31, 2008, more than 1100 colleges and universities across the US participated in Focus the Nation, a major educational initiative on global warming solutions. The event, which also had the participation of several hundred high schools, faith organizations and civic groups, is believed to be the largest teach-in in U.S. history. Many institutions help open forums on climate change with participation from faculty, elected officials, and other guests. Faculty members from a wide range of disciplines also incorporated climate change into their lectures. The final component of Focus the Nation is the 'Choose Your Future' vote, in which all students, faculty and community participants are encouraged to vote on what they think are the top five climate change solutions from a list of 15 that is available on the event's website. Voting ends in mid February.

Brown U Announces GHG Emissions Reduction Plan

Brown University (RI) has announced a plan to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to 42% below 2007 levels for all existing buildings by 2020. Brown also promised to reduce energy consumption up to 50% for all newly constructed and acquired facilities. The university plans to achieve these goals through initiatives such as switching the fuel that powers the central heating plan to cleaner natural gas when available, implementing new lighting technologies, improving the energy efficiencies of buildings, increasing co-generation of electricity, and using renewable energy sources where appropriate.

Casper College to Launch Renewable Energy Program

Casper College (WV) recently received a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to launch a program in renewable energy. The majority of the funding will support the construction of a small wind generator testing and training site, which will serve as a laboratory for students in the program. The program will also include courses such as electrical power, electrical machines, and alternative energy.

DOE Announces 2009 Solar Decathlon Teams

The U.S. Department of Energy recently announced the schools selected to compete in the fourth Solar Decathlon, which will be held in Washington, DC in 2009. The teams, selected from universities in the U.S., Canada, and Germany, will each receive $100,000 from the DOE to design, build, and operate an energy efficient, fully-solar-powered home. In addition to producing enough electricity and hot water to perform all the functions of a home, from powering lights and electronics to cooking, washing clothes and dishes, each home must produce surplus energy sufficient to power an electric car. Applications for the competition were evaluated by a panel made up of engineers, scientists and other experts from DOE and its National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Teams were required to meet specific criteria, demonstrating their ability to design and build an innovative, entirely solar-powered, 800-square-foot home from scratch, including the ability to raise additional funds and assemble a team necessary to carry the project through to completion.

El Camino CC Opens Green Humanities Building

El Camino Community College (CA) recently opened a new green humanities building. The 83,900-square-foot facility features natural day lighting, sun shades and other steps to reduce heat gain, recycled flooring materials, and a white roof.

Furman U Students Win Award for Campus Green Living Film

A film made by a group of Furman University (SC) students has been selected as a finalist in the Conservation in Action Multimedia Contest. Their film, "The Lifestyle Project," documented the transformation and experiences of Furman freshmen as they sought to reduce their impact on the environment by changing the way they lived their daily lives. The film followed the students as they followed a vegetarian diet, reduced their water and electricity usage, generated less trash, and quit driving their cars o

Georgia Tech to Install Green Tissue Dispensers

The Georgia Institute of Technology will install No-Touch Hands Free Paper Towel and Tissue Dispensers, which will use Green Seal certified paper towels and toilet tissue. The installation will begin in February.

Johns Hopkins U Task Force on Climate Change Begins Work

The Johns Hopkins University (MD) President's Task Force on Climate Change recently held its first meeting. The group, which includes administrators, faculty, community leaders, and students, was formed to help guide the development of the university's new climate change policy. It is charged with developing a comprehensive strategic plan and creating an interdisciplinary working group of experts who will focus on innovative and novel approaches related to climate change.

Northern Arizona U Building Achieves LEED Platinum

Northern Arizona University's Applied Research and Development Building has achieved LEED Platinum certification, earning 60 out of 69 points possible. The 59,821 square-foot building features a photovoltaic solar power system that provides a minimum of 20% of its electricity, automatic shade controls, venting windows, and an enthalpy wheel, which regulates the building's temperatures. About 30% of the building's supplies are from recycled materials, 57% are from local producers or manufacturers, and the wood used was sustainable harvested from a renewable forest-management system. Additionally, the building's conference unit has a green roof, and the parking lot is made of pervious concrete, which allows water to be captured in natural aquifers to be used for irrigation purposes.

Ohlone Opens Green Campus registered for LEED Platinum

Ohlone College (CA) recently opened a newly constructed green campus. The campus, which hopes to achieve LEED Platinum certification, features solar energy co-generation that will supply up to 42% of the building's energy needs, geothermal ground coils, enthalpy wheels, storm water filtering, wetlands restoration, and indoor water-saving fixtures.

RecycleMania Begins with Record Number of Participants

RecycleMania began January 27, 2008 with a record 400 colleges and universities participating. The competition has more than doubled each year from its initiation in 2001 by two Ohio colleges. The 400 schools represent 46 states and the District of Columbia and include institutions ranging from small two-year community colleges to Ivy League universities. Over a 10-week period from January 27 to April 5, 2008, participating schools will compete in various categories measuring the success of their recycling and waste prevention efforts. Each week, the standings will be posted on the RecycleMania website.

Rice U to Begin EcoRep Program

An internal grant program at Rice University (TX) has provided funds to enable the development of an "EcoRep" program this semester. The grant will pay one student from each residential college to serve as an EcoRep. Each EcoRep will have six main duties: facilitating recycling, reducing waste in the serveries, conserving energy, promoting environmental issues, maintaining contacts with relevant University staff, and administering the Green Dorm Initiative, a program which certifies dorm rooms meeting cer

UCLA Law School to Establish Center on Climate Change

The University of California, Los Angeles School of Law recently secured an endowment fund to establish the Emmett Center, a center dedicated to the study, research, and teaching of knowledge related to climate change and the environment. The Emmett Center plans to engage UCLA experts who are working on matters related to climate change and intends to play a key role in addressing environmental issues.

U Michigan Annual Environmental Report

The University of Michigan recently released its Annual Environmental Report, which lists the University's energy use, water use, emissions, waste production, mass transit systems, and total carbon footprint. The report finds that the institution's carbon output decreased by 40,000 pounds since 2004.

Unity College to Offer 2 New Sustainability Majors

Beginning in the fall of 2008, Unity College (ME) will offer a Bachelor's of Science in Sustainable Design and Technology and a Bachelor's of Science in Agriculture, Food, and Sustainability. Students in the Sustainable Design and Technology program will learn to evaluate and implement emerging technologies and to design, quantify, and account for programs of energy efficiency and climate emission reductions for government, for private businesses, or for households. The emphasis will be on practical skills based on solid general theory. The Agriculture, Food, and Sustainability program will prepare students for future study and careers in the growing fields of sustainable agriculture and food systems. The approach will be interdisciplinary and experiential, drawing on several disciplines that intersect in the field of agriculture and food systems study, including biology, ecology, economics, critical social sciences, and history, as well as applied sciences such as horticulture, livestock management, and marketing. The program will have a significant field and experiential component.

U Texas at Austin Launches Campus Sustainability Newsletter

The University of Texas at Austin recently launched 'Synergies,' a monthly newsletter devoted to sustainability-based campus events, activities and achievements. The goal of the newsletter is to publicize sustainability initiatives on campus, create a broader understanding of sustainability at UT, and help connect individuals who wish to get involved with campus projects. 'Synergies' is designed for UT faculty, staff, and students and is distributed primarily online.

U Washington to Offer Professorships in Sustainability

The University of Washington plans to offer professorships in sustainability. Pending the approval of the Board of Regents, the first two professorships will be held by Stephen Kieran and James Timberlake of an environmentally conscious architecture firm. Kieran and Timberlake will teach six related courses exploring designs and methods for reducing environmental impacts of construction. Funding for the professorships comes from Mithun and The Russell Family Foundation.

Bowdoin Converts Student Loans to Grants

Bowdoin College (ME) has announced that, starting in the 2008-09 academic year, it will replace loans with grants for all new and current students receiving financial aid. Bowdoin President Barry Mills assured that the program would not cause the college to abandon its commitment to educate lower-income students. The initiative is part of The Bowdoin Campaign, a five-year effort that seeks to raise $250 million for the college.

Colby Replaces Student Loans with Grants

Colby College (ME) recently announced that, beginning in the fall of 2008, the school will replace all student loans with grants. The loan elimination program will apply to new and currently enrolled students and will take about $1.5 million per year to implement.

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.

Emerson Building Receives LEED Certification

Emerson College's (MA) new 14-story residence hall and campus center has received LEED certification. The building promotes density, is located on a redeveloped urban site, uses reduced-flow fixtures, provides maximum daylight to all of the living spaces, and was built with significant amounts of recycled and regionally-manufactured materials.

Michigan State U to Build On-Campus Recycling Facility

The Michigan State University Board of Trustees authorized building a new recycling facility on campus. The facility will triple the amount of materials currently being recycled by allowing the university to expand recycling collection in all buildings. The recycling facility will cost approximately $13.3 million and will pay for itself in 12 years. The Board also heard 26 recommendations to reduce MSU's ecological footprint presented by the Environmental Stewardship Systems Team, which is made up of faculty, staff, and students. The team recommended that MSU improve the way the campus monitors and tracks material waste, schedule classes more efficiently to reduce heating and energy costs in buildings, develop a "green" certification program for units and departments, and reduce energy use in all campus buildings by 9 percent through reducing heating, ventilation, and cooling system running time.

NC State Begins 'Year of Energy' with Solar Array Dedication

North Carolina State University initiated its 'Year of Energy' with the dedication of a new 75.6 kW photovoltaic array that will serve as an educational project for students. The 'Year of Energy' is a program in which the University plans to focus on energy-related issues throughout 2008. The array, which is owned by Carolina Solar Energy, is believed to be the largest privately financed solar photovoltaic array in North Carolina. The power it generates is sold to Progress Energy. The dedication ceremony was followed with NCSU's inaugural Energy Fair, which served to show attendees how NCSU and its partners foresee solutions to energy issues.

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.

SUNY-ESF Hires Director of Renewable Energy Systems

The State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry hired Michael Kelleher as the Director of Renewable Energy Systems. In this new position, Kelleher will focus on finding and adopting technologies to help the College save energy and produce energy from sustainable and renewable sources. Kelleher also serves as co-director of the SUNY Center for Sustainable and Renewable Energy and is a member of the ESF Campus Climate Change Committee.

U Alabama Implements Recycling Program

The University of Alabama is planning to implement a recycling program across campus. The program, which comes after a successful pilot phase, will first be implemented in the residences halls, academic buildings, and administrative buildings. Once the program has enough support, the number of bins will be increased and the athletic buildings will receive bins as well.

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.

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.

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.

Washington U in St. Louis Offers Hybrid-Only Car Share Program

Washington University in St. Louis (MO) recently introduced WeCar, a car sharing program that will exclusively utilize hybrid vehicles. Under the program, Enterprise Rent-A-Car will make 6 hybrid vehicles available to rent on an hourly basis by faculty, staff, and students over age 18.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.