NPR: Grow Green Energy Along with Endowments
National Public Radio’s Marketplace segment recently discussed Sustainable Endowments Institute’s Billion Dollar Green Challenge and Green Revolving Investment Tracking System (GRITS 1.0).
NPR: How to Grow Green Energy and Endowments [Audio]
National Public Radio's Marketplace investigates Sustainable Endowments Institute's Billion Dollar Green Challenge and Green Revolving Investment Tracking System (GRITS) to advance the idea of a rolling green fund to finance sustainability projects.
Energy Dept Funds Building Energy Efficiency Research
The University of Florida at Gainesville, Stony Brook University, University of Maryland, Case Western Reserve University and the University of Tennessee at Knoxville were selected by the U.S. Department of Energy for nearly $6 million toward incubator projects to improve heating, ventilation and air conditioning, water heating, sensors and controls, and building energy modeling.
Portland State U Receives Grant for Energy Plant Upgrade
A new $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration will enable the university to replace old, inefficient boilers with more efficient ones, install energy metering software and meters, and offer seven visualization monitors with the ability for students, staff, and energy officials to model energy use scenarios for individual buildings and the district as a whole.
Greenfield CC Receives $225K for Sustainable Ag & Energy Programs
(U.S.): The newly acquired $225,000 in funding by the college's Sustainable Agriculture and Green Energy Education Center will be used to pay some staff costs, develop new courses, add new physical improvements to the school’s greenhouse, and to plan a one-acre botanical garden on campus.
Joliet Junior College Receives $296K Rebate for Sustainable Bldgs
(U.S.): The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity recently awarded the $296,243 rebate to the college for sustainable features of its buildings, which exceed the state's Energy Conservation Code. The rebate money will be reinvested into future energy saving modifications at the college.
North Carolina A&T State U Enters into Energy Efficiency Contract
(U.S.): The recently signed contract will be funded by reductions in energy usage over a 17.25-year contract term, with no upfront cost to taxpayers for improvements to university buildings and systems. It includes lighting, steam system and weatherization improvements, installation of new heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) controls, and a preventive maintenance program.
California Polytechnic State U Pomona Earmarks $100K to Programs
The university's Associated Students Inc. sustainability chair recently announced a new reserve of $100,000 for sustainable programs, events and implementations on campus that promote sustainability and help reduce the university's negative environmental impact.
Montclair State U Awarded $1M Grant for Sustainability Studies
Recently awarded, the three-year funding will support future research activities and collaborative educational programs that are directed at fostering a sustainable and resilient New Jersey through the university's PSEG Institute for Sustainability Studies, which is dedicated to achieving a better understanding of how New Jersey can work to balance a clean environment with economic growth and social justice.
Portland State U Receives $630K for Building Research
The National Science Foundation awarded $630,978 through the university's Interdisciplinary, Research-based Engineering and Design (IRED) Green Building Scholars project for new interdisciplinary educational opportunities focused on reducing the environmental impact of buildings.
North Carolina State U Awards Inaugural Sustainability Grants
(U.S.): The student-led board of the Sustainability Fund recently allocated funding toward 12 new bikes, a solar art installation, start-up funding for a Food Recovery Network chapter, installation of a solar trash compactor, and an on-campus community garden.
Stanford U to Divest from Coal Companies
The university recently announced it will not make direct investments of endowment funds in publicly traded companies whose principal business is the mining of coal for use in energy generation. The Board of Trustees endorsed this recommendation from the university's Advisory Panel on Investment Responsibility and Licensing, which conducted an extensive review over the last several months of the social and environmental implications of investment in fossil fuel companies.
Humboldt State U Adopts Investment Pledge
The recently embraced Humboldt Investment Pledge, adopted through the university's Advancement Foundation Board, comes on the heels of stakeholder meetings including students and lays out a 10-point pledge with goals for investment activity that limit its holdings in fossil fuel companies.
Macalester College Awarded $650K Sustainability Grant
The $650,000 Margaret A. Cargill Foundation grant is aimed at expanding sustainability and sustainable thinking beyond Environmental Studies and the Sustainability Office and potential projects include engaging faculty in creating new courses with a focus on sustainability, incorporating the topic into a future International Roundtable, training faculty, staff and students, establishing a sustainability fellowship, and hiring additional student workers in the sustainability office.
MRIT U Launches Energy and Water Reduction Retrofit
(Australia): The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University will invest AU$98 million ($92 million) in its Sustainable Urban Precincts Program over three campuses, which will work with two corporations to reduce its water and energy use through improved, more efficient equipment, saving money and lessening greenhouse gas emissions. A portion of the funding will support teaching and research in sustainability including 10 doctorate of psychology scholarships.
U Maryland Grants $50K for Sustainability Projects
(U.S.): The university's Sustainability Fund granted Facilities Management $50,000 to implement a rainwater harvesting system, a teaching green roof, or both, for the new Edward St. John Learning and Teaching Center, which is scheduled to open summer 2016.
U Wyoming Launches Revolving Fund
(U.S.): The university's new Conservation and Efficiency Revolving Fund, aimed at energy, water and waste efforts, emerged from a student project and was granted $250,000 seed money from the school's Physical Plant. Part of SEI's Billion Dollar Green Challenge, projects will be tracked and evaluated through Green Revolving Investment Tracking System (GRITS) and internal metrics.
Cornell U Creates Faculty Director Endowments
The original funders of the David R. Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future are now going to gift an endowment for the center's directorship and establish a challenge campaign to endow the center's three faculty director positions. For every $2 million a donor gives for a faculty director chair, the Atkinsons will contribute another $1 million to endow each of the three faculty leadership positions that oversee the center's three main research areas: energy, the environment and economic development.
Energy Dept Announces $4M Toward Renewable Energy
In an effort to accelerate development of marine energy systems including tidal energy, a consortium of universities will receive $4 million for research that seeks to optimize operations, reduce maintenance costs, and improve the components and performance.
Harvard U to Sign Onto Responsible Investment Guidelines
The university recently announced its decision to sign onto the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment, which is a network for investors who are committed to integrating environmental, social and governance considerations into investment practices and ownership policies.
Pitzer College to Divest From Fossil Fuel Companies
The college's board of trustees just unanimously approved its Fossil Fuel Divestment-Climate Action Model, which divests nearly all the college's endowment investments by the end of 2014, develops an environmental, social and governance policy to guide investment decisions, and targets a 25 percent reduction of the college's current carbon footprint by the end of 2016.
Penn State U Allocates $875K in Sustainability Proposals
The Reinvention Fund, the university's Sustainability Institute internal grant program, recently selected 22 winning proposals across its five campuses with over $102,000 going toward student submissions. The selected projects represent a tactical approach to fulfilling the university's living laboratory theme from its strategic plan.
Western Carolina U Students Pay Into Sustainability Fund
Beginning in fall 2014, all full-time students will pay an additional $5 in student fees during the fall and spring semester to support sustainability-related project proposals from students, staff and faculty. The fee is expected to generate approximately $77,000 per year.
Three Universities Sign Billion Dollar Green Challenge
(U.S.): The University of Wyoming, the University of Saskatchewan, and Sewanee: The University of the South have recently committed to creating a self-managed revolving fund that finances energy efficiency improvements that achieve reductions in operating expenses and greenhouse gas emissions while creating regenerating funds for future projects.
Prescott College Commits to Fossil Fuel Divestment
The resolution establishes an investment filter to remove the largest 200 fossil fuel corporations listed by the Carbon Tracker Initiative, over the next 3 years, with a goal of reducing risk while increasing financial and social return on investment. The college also included a clause to engage in advocacy encouraging current investment managers to develop fossil free investment fund products that would also serve their other clients.
Rutgers U Saves $41M in Operating Expenses
Over the last four years, initiatives in energy conservation programs, alternative energy usage, water conservation, solid waste recycling, green landscaping, and the use of more efficient campus vehicles have allowed the university to save $41 million in operating expenses.
U South Sewanee Launches Green Revolving Fund
Now accepting applications from the campus community, which includes the surrounding community, the revolving fund will finance energy and water efficiency and renewable energy projects that cut operating costs and reduce environmental impact.
Western Illinois U Creates Sustainability Fund Grant
The university's Campus Sustainability Committee has newly formed the Student Sustainability Fund Award designed to support student research, campus projects and professional presentations in the area of sustainability up to $500.
U Idaho Awards Nearly $14K Toward Engagement
The university's Sustainability Center and the Office of Community Partnerships have awarded $13,900 to initiatives that facilitate student and community engagement in building sustainability through areas including on-campus transportation and climate, and community outreach and native landscaping.
EPA Awards $5M for Clean Water Projects
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency awarded the five universities to evaluate innovative green infrastructure practices in urban areas, using Philadelphia, Pa. as the pilot area. These grants stem from a cooperative partnership between EPA and Philadelphia’s Green City, Clean Waters program that represents a broad, long-term investment in implementing green infrastructure stormwater management practices. The awardees include universities are Villanova University, Swarthmore College, Temple University, University of New Hampshire and University of Pennsylvania.
U Albany Awarded Two Grants for Campus Sustainability
One grant in the amount of $607,000 will go to support the environmental initiatives of a planned expansion of the university's Campus Center, while the other grant is intended to initiate a campus-wide composting project.
U Washington Awards $279K to Campus Sustainability Projects
The university's Green Seed Fund has selected five winning proposals submitted by faculty, students and staff that advance sustainable research, contribute to campus sustainability goals, and will contribute to greenhouse gas reductions.
U Massachusetts Amherst Receives $485K to Bolster Food System
(U.S.): Seeking to transform the food landscape to a more sustainable one, the Kendall Foundation has recently awarded the university $485,000 over two years with an initial focus of cultivating new suppliers of environmentally sound produce and offering more free-range poultry and animal products in its newly remodeled dining hall.
Cornell U Faculty Vote to Divest
By a 43-13 Faculty Senate vote, a resolution called for the divestiture by 2035 of all investments in the top 200 holding companies ranked by fossil fuel reserves.
Columbia U Introduces Green Fund
Aimed at improving sustainability of the university's campus, the new fund will support student-led projects selected by a committee of personnel and students.
New Mexico State U Receives $2M for Water Research
Realizing the valuable role that water research plays in the state, the governor's office recently announced additional funding allocated to the New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute, which will be distributed to several universities including the University of New Mexico and New Mexico Tech.
Simon Fraser U Launches Revolving Fund
The university's new initiative, Sustainable Utilities Revolving Fund, is a self-replenishing fund that supports energy and water initiatives that generate cost savings.
College of William & Mary Selects Green Fee Proposals
(U.S.): The university's Committee on Sustainability has selected 10 proposals to fund totaling nearly $52,000, including a paperless management system, funding for a garden intern, and a student outreach position for marine education.
Emory U Awards Sustainability Project Funding
(U.S.): This year the Office of Sustainability Initiatives funded 18 projects totaling $16,000 including an expansion of recycling and composting, hosting a day-long conference, development of food gardens for patient meals, and human-powered phone chargers.
Portland State U Initiates Green Revolving Fund
(U.S.): Aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, lower utility expenses and advance the university's climate action goals, the new $500,000 fund will be used towards projects that improve building conditions and reduce its environmental footprint. Savings are reinvested in the fund.
U Washington Offers Campus Research Project Funding
(U.S.): The university recently established the new Green Seed Fund to provide grants of $25,000 to $75,000 for proposals outlining research projects that provide practical solutions to helping the university reach its sustainability goals.