Air & Climate

Introduction

Global climate change is having myriad negative impacts throughout the world, including increased frequency and potency of extreme weather events, sea level rise, species extinction, water shortages, declining agricultural production, and spread of diseases. The impacts are particularly pronounced for low-income communities and countries. In addition, institutions that inventory and take steps to reduce their air pollutant emissions can positively impact the health of the campus community, as well as the health of their local communities and regions.

661 resources

Large-Scale Renewables: The Next Chapter in Higher Education Sustainability Leadership

  • Second Nature (MA)
  • CustomerFirst Renewables (MD)

Higher education is uniquely positioned to both expand and benefit from climate leadership. Many universities and colleges have substantially stepped up their commitments and efforts to reduce greenhouse gases (GHG ...

  • Posted March 14, 2017
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Renewable Energy 100: The Course to a Carbon-Free Campus

  • Allegheny College (PA)
  • University at Albany (NY)
  • Georgetown University (DC)
  • Butte College (CA)
  • Ball State University (IN)
  • University of Louisville (KY)
  • University of Delaware (DE)

America’s institutions of higher education can play a crucial role in the fight to prevent the worst impacts of global warming. Colleges and universities across the country should aggressively ...

  • Posted March 14, 2017
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Carbon Tax

  • Whitman College (WA)

The Associated Students of Whitman College (ASWC) Sustainability Committee passed a self-imposed carbon tax on February 7, 2016. The tax is designed to raise money for the Green Fund, a ...

  • Posted March 13, 2017
  • Case Studies
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Sharing the Load: Aggregating Renewable Energy Purchases with Others

  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MA)
  • AASHE (PA)
  • CustomerFirst Renewables (MD)

The idea of pooling resources to increase bargaining power is not new. But it is being newly applied to renewable energy purchases. Now, no matter the size or location of ...

  • Posted March 9, 2017
  • Videos & Webinars
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Assessing Supply Chain Emissions in Higher Education: Who, Why and How

  • Portland Community College (OR)
  • Higher Education Associations Sustainability Consortium (HEASC) (PA)

The intent of this paper is to provide public and private sector professionals with a guidebook as to how to track and report on their supply chain-specific greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Posted March 3, 2017
  • Publications
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Beyond Doom and Gloom - Include Solutions to Climate Change

  • Higher Education Associations Sustainability Consortium (HEASC) (PA)

Are you or your students worried about climate change impacts? Are you connecting your students to ways to be involved in solutions? This webinar focuses on expert materials to engage ...

  • Posted March 2, 2017
  • Videos & Webinars
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Does Eco-labeling of Services Matter? Evidence from Higher Education

  • Marquette University (WI)
  • University of Idaho (ID)

Eco-labeling of services has become increasingly common, yet little empirical evidence exists concerning its effectiveness. We address this gap in the literature by analyzing a highly visible eco-label, the American ...

  • Posted Feb. 17, 2017
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Mapping a Pathway to Low-Carbon Campuses

  • Rocky Mountain Institute (CO)

Over the last few years, RMI has partnered with universities to develop aggressive carbon-reduction/neutrality plans and to share best practices associated with energy efficiency and renewable energy across organizations ...

  • Posted Feb. 13, 2017
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The State of Sustainability in Higher Education 2016: The Life Cycle of Higher Education Facilities

  • University of New Hampshire (NH)
  • Sightlines (CT)

Over the past two decades, colleges and universities have embraced numerous programs to minimize their environmental impact.

What were the “wins” for sustainability in higher education in 2016?

The annual ...

  • Posted Feb. 13, 2017
  • Publications
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Green Gigawatt Partnership: How to Apply for AASHE's On Campus Solar Project Support

  • Cedar Valley College - DCCCD (TX)
  • AASHE (PA)
  • Edison Energy (CA)

AASHE is offering cost-free support for up to five campuses (http://greengigawatt.org/aashe-campus-project.php) to develop and implement on-campus (or near campus) solar projects.This webinar presents how the ...

  • Posted Feb. 9, 2017
  • Videos & Webinars
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Assessment of carbon neutrality and sustainability in educational campuses (CaNSEC): A general framework

  • TERI University

This study presents the cross-institutional Carbon Neutrality and Sustainability in Educational Campuses (CaNSEC) framework. This framework estimates carbon footprints along with overall sustainability of the institution. The carbon footprint analysis ...

  • Posted Jan. 30, 2017
  • Publications
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Center for Climate Preparedness & Community Resilience

  • Antioch University, New England (NH)

Antioch’s Center for Climate Preparedness and Community Resilience delivers applied research, consulting, education and training. The Center's approach is solutions-oriented, pragmatic, participatory, and inclusive, and based on best ...

  • Posted Dec. 16, 2016
  • Research Centers & Institutes
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Green Gigawatt Partnership: Tips and Tricks for On-Campus Solar

  • Howard University (DC)
  • Washington and Lee University (VA)
  • AASHE (PA)
  • Edison Energy (CA)

The Green Gigawatt Partnership is designed to help AASHE members catalyze one gigawatt of renewable generation capacity by 2020. In 2017, this AASHE initiative will offer members support for both ...

  • Posted Dec. 8, 2016
  • Videos & Webinars
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A geographic approach to facilitating local climate governance: From emissions inventories to mitigation planning

  • Pennsylvania State University (PA)

It is increasingly recognized that municipal and regional scale governments play a vital role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change. While universities possess many resources that ...


Municipal collaboration for carbon footprinting: Syracuse, New York case study

  • State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (NY)

Purpose

The City of Syracuse, New York, has undertaken energy conservation measures over the past decade. In 2011, the city completed a greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory that serves as the ...


Universities and Climate Change Mitigation: Advancing Grassroots Climate Policy in the US

  • Pennsylvania State University (PA)
  • University of California, Berkeley (CA)
  • ICF International (VA)

While US climate change mitigation policy has stalled at the national level, local and regional actors are increasingly taking progressive steps to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Universities are poised ...


Community support for campus approaches to sustainable energy use: The role of “town–gown” relationships

  • American University (DC)
  • Cornell University (NY)

Across the United States, universities are grappling with challenges associated with adopting approaches to more sustainable energy use. One approach has been to develop energy-related projects in their local, host ...


Realization of a Low Emission University Campus Through the Implementation of a Climate Action Plan

The Climate Action Plan (CAP) experience started a few years ago with the aim to manage carbon and energy more efficiently. CAP is a roadmap to get Universities to the ...


From the United Nations to Your University: Coordinating the Efforts of Local Students in Global Climate Action

  • University of Arizona (AZ)

Two of the most common hurdles student activist groups face are a) a lack of funding, resources and time to complete projects and b) gaining and maintaining student involvement beyond ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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How to Use Renewables to Cut Carbon and Boost the Bottom Line

  • Cedar Valley College - DCCCD (TX)
  • Howard University (DC)
  • Edison Energy (CA)

This workshop will help participants develop comprehensive renewable energy plans that educate campus stakeholders, dramatically reduce GHGs, and provide cost savings and budget certainty by avoiding volatile conventional energy costs ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Energy Engineering for Non-Engineers

  • GreenerU (MA)

Much of the change we need to make in order to address climate change and sustainability challenges relates to engineering, but that doesn't mean everyone needs an engineering degree ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Leading Climate & Resilience Action on Your Campus & Community!

  • Second Nature (MA)
  • National Campus Leadership Council (DC)

Students have long been the champions and implementers for campus sustainability efforts. NCLC & Second Nature will engage student leaders on emerging climate issues, providing tools/support to make a ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Decarbonizing the Global Economy: Student Coalition to Garner Higher Ed Support for Widespread Carbon Pricing Legislation

  • Swarthmore College (PA)

Scientists and the United Nations agree that we urgently need to decarbonize the world's economy to avoid the worst impacts of the climate crisis. Unfortunately, developing a cohesive policy ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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10 Years Old, 1 Year New: Climate Leadership Commitment signatory networking session

  • Second Nature (MA)

Climate Leadership Commitment Implementation Liaisons and those interested in learning about the Climate Leadership Network will hear from Second Nature staff about the accomplishments, progress, and activities over the past ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Climate Leadership Network Carbon Offset Projects Networking

  • Clarkson University (NY)
  • Second Nature (MA)

This networking meeting will focus on the development of carbon offset projects for colleges and universities. An advisory group formed after a networking session at last year's AASHE conference ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Ganging Up to Go Big: Campus Collaborations to Achieve Scale with Renewables

  • University at Buffalo (NY)
  • University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (WI)
  • Edison Energy (CA)

Electricity is the single largest source of emissions for most campuses, and renewable energy is the only way to eliminate those emissions. But renewable energy is still unfamiliar territory for ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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DC Climathon at GW: University Partners With City to Innovate on Climate Solutions

  • George Washington University (DC)
  • District of Columbia Government (DC)

DC Climathon cultivates social start-ups and provides experiential and collaborative learning to self-identified students, social entrepreneurs, and pioneering professionals to provide climate change solutions for their cities. As part of ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Higher Education Endowments & the Paris Climate Agreement: Investing for a Sustainable Future

  • Sustainable Endowments Institute (MA)
  • Second Nature (MA)
  • Intentional Endowments Network (MA)
  • Cambridge Associates (VA)
  • Impax Asset Management

Higher education has been leading by example on climate change, striving for climate neutrality in campus operations and promoting education, research, and community engagement for climate solutions. In recent years ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Building Climate Resilience: A Planning Framework and Early Experiences

  • Western Technical College (WI)
  • Second Nature (MA)

This session will give an overview of the resilience planning framework available through Second Nature Climate Commitments and highlight innovative climate resilience efforts already underway. Institutions across all U.S ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Climate Action Planning: Making Plans that are Ambitious AND Implementable

  • Amherst College (MA)
  • Virginia Commonwealth University (VA)

Sustainability folk know writing a climate action or sustainability plan is only the beginning. After the initial buzz of publishing wanes, our plans begin to gather dust. What makes a ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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The Power of Dialogue: The Role of Student-led Initiatives in Shaping Climate Policy

  • Boston University (MA)
  • Macalester College (MN)

On April 4, 2016, college campuses in thirty state capitals across the country engaged in simultaneous open dialogues with state officials on implementing the EPA's Clean Power Plan. While ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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University of California's Presidential Initiative for Carbon Neutrality: A Multi-Institutional, Multi-Dimensional Perspective

  • University of California, Office of the President (CA)
  • University of California, Riverside (CA)
  • University of California, San Diego (CA)
  • University of California, Santa Cruz (CA)
  • University of California, Merced (CA)

The 2014 UC Carbon Neutrality Initiative builds on pioneering work on climate research to make all ten campuses carbon neutral in Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2025. All UC ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Student Engagement and Learning at the UN Climate COPs

  • Amherst College (MA)
  • Dickinson College (PA)
  • Macalester College (MN)
  • Texas Southern University (TX)
  • University of Connecticut (CT)

Youth have had a growing presence in recent years at the annual Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. This includes numerous US colleges ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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CAP Revisited: Lessons Learned and New Strategies Discovered by Revising Climate Action Plans

  • Emory University (GA)
  • University of Maryland, College Park (MD)

Colleges and universities are updating their climate action plans to reflect the latest GHG reduction strategies and renew stakeholder engagement. The University of Maryland released its first CAP in 2009 ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Contrasting Approaches to Effective Greenhouse Gas Reduction Strategies: A Review of Energy-Focused Programs and Lessons Learned

  • Colby College (ME)
  • University of Virginia (VA)

A small private liberal arts college in the Northeast, Colby College, and a large public research university in the Southeast, the University of Virginia, will compare and contrast approaches within ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Internal Carbon Pricing: Designing and Implementing Campus Climate Policies with Vassar, Swarthmore, and Yale

  • Swarthmore College (PA)
  • Vassar College (NY)
  • Yale University (CT)

In the absence of federal or international carbon markets, higher education has a momentous opportunity to model institutional capacity to put a price on carbon. The goal of this panel ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Developing and Implementing Innovative Carbon Offset Projects

  • Duke University (NC)
  • Oberlin College (OH)
  • University of Florida (FL)

For universities and colleges with fast approaching climate goals, it is clear that carbon offsets are set to play a crucial role in achieving these goals. More schools are looking ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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The Research - Climate Nexus: The Difficult Questions Facing Progressive Institutions Today.

  • Case Western Reserve University (OH)
  • Cornell University (NY)
  • Princeton University (NJ)
  • Buro Happold (NY)

As universities are tackling climate commitments focused on Scope 1 and 2 emissions, they are facing difficult decisions on capital investments in existing and new building stock and infrastructure to ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Combining carbon and nitrogen footprints: A new tool for a more comprehensive approach to environmental management on campuses

  • University of New Hampshire (NH)
  • University of Virginia (VA)

A new iteration of 'CarbonMAP' (the web-based version of the widely-used Campus Carbon Calculator) will soon include the ability to track and manage the campus nitrogen footprint as well. This ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Smart Parking: How EV Charging can reduce transportation emissions

  • Colorado State University (CO)
  • University of Massachusetts Lowell (MA)
  • ICF International (VA)

Plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) charging on campuses provide a service to employees and students, signal environmental leadership, deliver educational and research opportunities, and play an important role in achieving GHG ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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F#!% Carbon Neutrality: Engaging Higher Education in Climate Policy

  • Auburn University (AL)
  • Bard College (NY)
  • Living Routes, Inc. (MA)
  • Citizens' Climate Lobby (CA)

Since the inception of the campus sustainability movement, the pursuit of carbon neutrality has been the dominant strategy for institutions that have signed the Presidents' Climate Commitment as well as ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Student Activism for Community Energy Efficiency: Harnessing ENERGY STAR Activities and Resources for the Public Good

  • American University (DC)

As part of an annual elective course in Sustainable Design, American University (AU) graduate students in the Global Environmental Politics program in the School of International Service undertake a real-world ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Carbon On-Setting: Community Impact Through Home Weatherizations in Greenville, SC

  • Furman University (SC)

This case study will tell the story of the Community Conservation Corps (CCC), the program highlighted by Second Nature in Furman University's selection as a Climate Leadership Finalist in ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Paving the Way for Increased Solar Utilization in Higher Education

  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (DC)
  • Center for Resource Solutions (CA)
  • Council of Independent Colleges in Virginia (VA)

Colleges and universities are increasingly interested in deploying solar technologies to power and green up their campuses. However, financing, legal, administrative, and policy barriers can often get in the way ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Indoor Air Quality in the Context of Human Performance

  • Kirksey (TX)

Studies conducted by Harvard and LBNL National Lab have indicated that indoor CO2 levels that were until recently considered safe actually have substantial negative impacts on human cognition, including impaired ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Using the Social Cost of Carbon as an Ingredient to Minimize Life Cycle Cost and Carbon

  • Miami University (OH)

Optimizing a campus's utility master plan to minimize its twenty-five year life cycle cost is one thing, but add the social cost of carbon to the mix and the ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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The Climate Narrative Project: Training a New Generation of Climate Storytellers

  • University of Iowa (IA)

What accounts for the gap between science and action on climate change, and what can we do more effectively to communicate informed stories and galvanize action? The Climate Narrative Project ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Driving Change: A survey of how institutions are addressing commuting and business travel.

  • Mohawk College (ON)
  • Ameresco, Inc. (MA)

Transportation is often perceived by higher education institutions as an area that is out of their control and therefore difficult to impact change - yet at most schools greenhouse gas emissions ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Assessing the Carbon Footprint of Higher Education: Factors Influencing the Reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emissions

  • North Carolina A&T State University (NC)

Thanks to the leadership of AASHE and Second Nature almost 20% of all higher education institutions have committed to making significant greenhouse gas emission reductions, and many have made substantial ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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Capitalizing on Local Renewable Resources for Campus Energy Needs: The Williams Lake Campus Bio-Mass System

  • Thompson Rivers University (BC)

Campuses across North America are increasingly looking to renewable energy sources to help reduce Green House Gas (GHG) emissions and provide reliable and consistent energy costs. Each university has different ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
  • Conference Presentations
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This tab provides access to data collected through AASHE’s Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS). STARS is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. STARS enables meaningful comparisons over time and across institutions using a common set of measurements developed with broad participation from the campus sustainability community. Additional content and advanced benchmarking tools will be added to this tab over time.

Programs and Initiatives

The following links connect to specific Content Displays on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Scores

The following link connects to the Score Display on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Air & Climate Partners

8760 Engineering

St. Louis, MO
Business Affiliate
Energy Master Planning / Metering / Retrofits, Advanced Cx, Retro-Cx and Central Plant Optimization.

Aircuity, Inc.

Newton, MA
Business Affiliate

Climate Remediation Foundation

Cambridge, MA
Business Affiliate
CRF educates the public on climate change while Soli® keeps carbon out of the atmosphere for every dollar spent.

Coalesce

Boston, MA
Business Affiliate
Coalesce designs solutions to meet campus specific needs, equipping the community with core competencies will empower stakeholders to adopt sustainability as an organizing principle.

CustomerFirst Renewables

Gaithersburg, MD
Business Affiliate
CFR is an innovative, renewable energy advisory firm focused on bringing large-scale solutions directly to clients. CFR solutions typically meet up to 100% of power needs, cost less than brown power, and mitigate price uncertainty.

Delta M Incorporated

Milton, ON
Business Affiliate
Delta M provides improved air quality within your current capital outlay - our filters cost the same as other quality filters on the market, but with added features that improves the air you breathe and diverts 100% of filter waste from landfills.

Fovea, LLC

Seattle, WA
Business Affiliate

Second Nature

Boston, MA
Business Affiliate
Second Nature is committed to accelerating climate action in, and through, higher education.

Soli

Cambridge, MA
Business Affiliate
Soli® is a rewards program that fights climate change – it keeps two pounds of carbon out of the atmosphere for every $1 spent.