Posts Tagged ‘Bowdoin College’

Check out the following update from Bowdoin College regarding progress toward their target of climate neutrality by 2020.

The letter from President Mills is an excellent example of ongoing active involvement and communication from the president; a critically important aspect of climate action planning, to ensure the community understands it is an important, strategic goal of the institution.

The animated video from Bowdoin student Maggie Williams is not only impressive, but another great example of a successful climate action process: involving students, and engaging other disciplines (like art and communications) as part of the education for sustainability experience.


“Announcing word of a 16% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions since the College’s carbon reduction plan was adopted, President Barry Mills, in a letter to the Bowdoin community, urges everyone to learn how simple changes can have a significant impact in this ongoing effort.

“Bowdoin is an institution and a community dedicated from its founding to serving the Common Good, and there is no doubt that preservation of our environment falls within this historic charge,” writes Mills.

Read President Mills’ letter, view the summary report and watch the video produced by Maggie Williams ’12.”

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The latest issue of DownEast Magazine includes a great article called An Education in Green Living about education for sustainability efforts going on at Maine’s colleges and universities.

The article notes that fifteen Maine institutions have signed the ACUPCC – that’s about half of all of Maine’s the colleges and universities, and they represent about 75% of the students in the state.

The following schools are highlighted in the article (listed here with links to their pages on the ACUPCC reporting system): Unity College, College of the Atlantic, Bowdoin College, University of Maine, University of Maine at Presque Isle, Colby College, and the University of Southern Maine.

The article highlights Unity’s solar road trip, UM Presque Isle’s wind turbine, Bowdoin’s LEED certified hockey rink, UMaine’s Climate Change Institute, COA’s Sustainable Business Program, and many other exciting initiatives going on in the State.  Read the full article here.

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by Georges Dyer, Second Nature

Georges Dyer

Bowdoin is gearing up for Climate Days – a series of lectures, art installations, and performances that will engage the entire campus community in the process of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Bowdoin College - Carbon Neutral by 2020

Bowdoin has submitted its climate action plan to the ACUPCC and is aiming to eliminate net greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 through a combination of on-site reduction, supporting grid improvements, addressing commuting and investing in renewable energy credits and offsets appropriately.

Any institution addressing climate disruption, and proactively driving innovative solutions, will need input and cooperation across departments and groups, and Bowdoin is certainly taking this approach, as the Climate Days news release explains:

Climate Days, an ongoing interdisciplinary effort, are sponsored by an array of groups, including the President’s Climate Commitment Advisory Committee, Africana Studies, Arctic Studies, Athletics, Bowdoin Architecture and Design Association, Coastal Studies Center, Common Hour, English Department, Environmental Studies, Evergreens, Gender and Women’s Studies, Green Global Initiatives, History Department, McKeen Center for the Common Good, Music Department, Santagata Lecture Series and Sustainable Bowdoin.

Bowdoin also has a new blog – Global Change: Intersection of Nature and Culture – written by Philip Camill, Rusack Associate Professor of Environmental Studies and Biology and Director of the Environmental Studies Program at Bowdoin.  Camill plans to “analyze environmental change by focusing on the interaction between nature and culture, showcasing big ideas from all disciplines,” – and he’s off to a great start, covering topics of climate disruption, climate denial, communications, food security, environmental literacy and much more.

The Climate Days initiative, the Global Change blog, the climate action plan, the recent Sustainability Institute Bowdoin students helped organize – taken all together, these steps demonstrate what a comprehensive, interdisciplinary approach to sustainability Bowdoin is taking, and you can get a sense of the excitement it is generating on campus, just from reading about it.

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by Rima Mulla, Communications Associate, Second Nature

American College & University Presidents' Climate CommitmentThe theme of the recently released American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment 2009 Annual Report carries through in the latest Second Nature article published by Fast Company: Leadership for a Thriving, Sustainable World.

Here’s an excerpt from the article by Second Nature President Anthony Cortese and Senior Fellow Georges Dyer:

“The Copenhagen negotiations in December failed to deliver a concrete, binding international treaty on climate disruption.  The Senate is at an impasse on creating meaningful federal legislation that can sufficiently address the climate challenge while rebuilding a better economy. […] But leadership happens at all levels within organizations and within communities. […] In the case of eliminating greenhouse gas emissions, colleges and universities have formed the tip of the spear, forging ahead towards climate neutrality. Through the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) network, 675 institutions have come together pledging to take immediate actions, create longer-term plans, and publicly report their progress toward net-zero emissions.”

Read more about how the US Higher Education sector is leading the way, here.

Second Nature has published four articles as part of Fast Company’s Inspired Ethonomics series:

Higher Education’s Purpose: A Healthy, Just, and Sustainable Society
Making a Sustainability Perspective Second Nature in Education
The Campus as Living Laboratory
Leadership for a Thriving, Sustainable World

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