Updates from HEASC
NIRSA is a proud member of the Higher Education Associations Sustainability Consortium
Bill Clinton announces partnership between the ACUPCC and the Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI)
The ACUPCC signatories, supporting organizations, and NACUBO have been working with the CCI for several months on negotiating a partnership to facilitate the implementation of lower-cost energy efficiency projects (and eventually other applications) that will help signatories fulfill the terms of the ACUPCC. Specifically, the partnership gives ACUPCC signatories access to funding mechanisms, technical assistance, and discounts on products associated with energy efficiency retrofits for existing buildings.
On November 7 at the GreenBuild Expo in Chicago, former President Bill Clinton officially announced the partnership. Eleven ACUPCC signatories also announced the launch of pilot projects with the CCI that will serve as models for other colleges and universities. We thank all of you who have helped to date with this project, and were pleased with the press that the initiative and many of the signatories received as a result of the announcement.
Climate Change and Higher Education webcast December 12
On December 12 from 2-3:30pm eastern, SCUP, AASCU, and the New York Times will present a webcast titled Climate Change and Higher Education: Leadership to Achieve Climate Neutrality. Presentations will be made by Michael Crow, President of Arizona State University; Billy Parrish, co-founder and coordinator of the Energy Action Coalition; Dave Newport, Director University of Colorado, Boulder Environmental Center; and moderated by James Gorman, Science Editor, the New York Times. This webcast explores steps that colleges and universities are taking to respond to climate change, and will provide models that are transferable to other higher education institutions, corporations and communities. More info.
The ACUPCC continues to build momentum with 434 signatories representing over 3.5 million students - 22% of the total student population! In addition to the announcement of the partnership with the CCI, many other aspects of the ACUPCC are making progress:
- The "Kathy Schatzberg Challenge" has reached the midpoint in its campaign to enlist more schools by asking current signatories to recruit two colleagues by December 15, 2007. The feedback so far has been promising, with a number of presidents reporting that they have been actively wooing their peers over the last four weeks. More info.
- Signatories are submitting their first reports to the ACUPCC, as the first deadline for creating an institutional structure and identifying which two of the tangible actions they will take was November 15. The submission of this initial report is very important in demonstrating some early success - both for individual schools and the ACUPCC as a whole. View the reports.
A 5-page summary of GHG inventory tools and resources is available on the ACUPCC website. The Brief provides an overview of common resources for conducting a GHG inventory on campus and discusses the merits and drawbacks of each. The Brief is a companion to the ACUPCC Implementation Guide, which defines the specific obligations represented in the Commitment, explains technical issues related to implementation, and sets out the conditions to be considered in "good standing" within the ACUPCC. View the Brief
STARS - A national campus sustainability rating system
AASHE has initiated a collaborative process to develop a campus sustainability rating system, tentatively called the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment, and Rating System (STARS). The project is in its scoping and development phase, with a pilot version planned for early 2008, and a 1.0 version by early 2009.
Staff and board members from at least 16 HEAs are serving on the Strategic Advisory Committee for STARS. The Technical Advisory Committee includes over 70 other association members and sector experts. For more information, including a draft version of STARS, details about piloting, and a list of committees, go to http://www.aashe.org/stars.
NACA and NWF sponsor the second annual "Chill Out: Campus Solutions to Global Warming" competition
NACA and the National Wildlife Federation are sponsoring their second annual Chill Out competition. The competition was initiated to encourage students to work on solutions to global warming by offering grant money for essays and videos that illustrate projects occurring on campus. Read an article about the contest in James Madison University's student newspaper. For details about the contest, visit NWF's website.
Higher Education Sustainability Act (HESA) gaining support
HESA continues to gain strength in Congress and now has seven co-sponsors. However, more support is needed in order to get HESA included as part of the Higher Education Act. There are now 20 Higher Ed associations endorsing the bill but currently there are only 11 colleges and universities. More info or contact Jim Elder.