The University of Oregon became an early adopter of the American College and University President’s Climate Commitment when former president Dave Frohnmayer signed in 2007. By June 2014, 684 institutions signed the commitment. In 2010 the Office of Sustainability developed a comprehensive Climate Action Plan (CAP), and since then has supported tangible, transparent actions to reduce the University’s greenhouse gas emissions, and reported the results of this work. Since signing the commitment, the University has:
• Completed an annual GREENHOUSE GAS (GHG) EMISSIONS INVENTORY to track institutional emissions
• Established a FACULTY-LED SUSTAINABILITY COUNCIL to advise administration and provide valuable feedback
• Created the MODEL FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT which caps energy use in campus buildings at 2011 levels
• Established a GREEN REVOLVING LOAN FUND to finance energy efficiency projects
• Taken actions to INTEGRATE SUSTAINABILITY INTO THE CURRICULUM by providing faculty with the necessary resources for creating transformational learning opportunities
• Continued progress in WASTE REDUCTION and recycling. 2011 was the first year that recycled materials outweighed landfilled materials from campus waste streams.
After achieving our first set of goals, the Office of Sustainability and its partners are now in the process of investigating possibilities for the next round of projects to pursue.
During the 2012-14 academic years, the CAP was up for review and revision. By inviting staff experts in various topic areas such as air travel and campus information technology to share their insights, the Environmental Issues Committee is working to identify ambitiousbut-realistic projects.
Additionally, we surveyed the campus community in spring 2013 to get an idea of what is most important to them as we move forward. Below is a snapshot of student, staff, and faculty priorities for moving forward with the Climate Action Plan.