The University of California system's achievements in cutting the carbon footprint of its campuses is being recognized with a Climate Leadership Award from Second Nature and the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment (ACUPCC).
UC is among the 10 academic institutions chosen to receive prestigious Climate Leadership Awards. The third annual awards are being presented to ACUPCC signatory schools that demonstrate unparalleled campus innovation and climate leadership that helps transition society to a clean, just and sustainable future.
UC campuses, labs and medical facilities are among the greenest of any university in the country, driven by a groundbreaking Policy on Sustainable Practices that was implemented in 2004. Among the policy's achievements:
- Goals by 2020 (which UC is on track to meet) to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent, to make 20 percent of its food purchases sustainable and to send zero waste to landfills.
- 93 U.S. Green Building Council LEED-certified facilities, the most of any university in the country.
- Investments in energy efficiency and conservation that have cut costs by $32 million annually.
"UC is committed to being a sustainability leader and will continue to seek innovative solutions for reducing energy use and cutting greenhouse gas emissions on our campuses," said Nathan Brostrom, UC's executive vice president for business operations. "The Climate Leadership Award is a testament to the hard work of our students, staff and faculty, who are making UC the greenest university in the country."
A video highlighting the University of California system's sustainability efforts can be viewed on YouTube at http://youtu.be/IEJOFdO7-K4.
The 10 winners Climate Leadership Awards were among 20 finalists chosen by Second Nature's board. The 10 recipients represent the diversity of institutions of higher education and are located throughout the United States.
"These institutions are leading the way for the academic community by demonstrating how sustainable practices can be put into place on campus that have a long-term impact on creating a sustainable society for the benefit of all," said Anthony D. Cortese, president of Second Nature. "They have all shown tremendous creativity and an unrelenting commitment to integrate sustainable practices into their campuses and society as a whole."
Second Nature is the lead supporting organization of the ACUPCC, an agreement between nearly 700 colleges and universities to promote sustainability through teaching and action.
All winners will be recognized in an award ceremony with their peer institutions at the ACUPCC Climate Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., on June 21 and 22.
2012 Climate Leadership Award Winners
Doctorate Granting University
Arizona State University, AZ
University of South Florida, FL
Allegheny College, PA
Luther College, IA
Austin Community College District, TX
Haywood Community College, NC
Master's Colleges & University
Florida Gulf Coast University
University of Central Missouri
Special Focus Institutions / Other
Pratt Institute and PALS, NY
University of California System, CA
About Second Nature
Second Nature works to create a healthy, just and sustainable society by transforming higher education. Second Nature is the lead supporting organization of the American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment, a growing network of over 675 signatory higher education institutions in all 50 states that have made a public commitment to transform the educational experience for all students so they are prepared to solve the climate crisis.
Learn more at www.secondnature.org.
About the ACUPCC
The ACUPCC is a high-visibility effort to address global warming by garnering institutional commitments from college and universities to accelerate the education, research and community engagement to equip society to re-stabilize the Earth's climate, and eliminate net greenhouse gas emissions from their own operations.
Learn more at www.presidentsclimatecommitment.org.