Posts Tagged ‘University of Montana’

By Toni Nelson, ACUPCC Program Director, Second Nature

On January 20, 2012, the University of Louisville hosted the Farm to Campus Conference: Exploring the farm-to-food service connection, along with Louisville Farm to Table and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture.

The University of Louisville’s efforts to bring locally sourced food to campus have been featured in both The ACUPCC Implementer newsletter and in last year’s webinar presented with their food service provider Sodexo: “Farm to Campus: The Successes and Challenges of Sourcing Local and Sustainable Food.” Mitchell Payne, Associate Vice President Business Affairs, spearheaded these activities and was instrumental in organizing the Farm to Campus Conference and obtaining a grant to fund it, so that not only was registration for the approximately 100 attendees free, but we were also treated to a locally sourced luncheon with speaker Mary Berry Smith, Executive Director of The Berry Center and daughter of Kentucky writer and activist Wendell Berry.

Vice President Payne outlined his motivations for promoting local food at the University of Louisville based on three key benefits; buying local food: 1) fosters economic development; 2) reduces an institution’s carbon footprint; and 3) tastes better and is healthy.  He emphasized the important of leadership from the top, along with creating a shared process across campus that engages all members of the campus community, including faculty, staff, students, and the local community.  It is also important to set measurable goals – in the case of U of L, those goals are contractual, legal goals established in 2008 when Sodexo became their food service provider.  This is the only Sodexo contract in the U.S. with a specific percentage (15%) of local food purchases specified.  In the last two years the school has exceeded that amount, purchasing approximately 24% locally.


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By Steve Muzzy, Senior Associate, Second Nature

(This article appears in the November, 2010 issue of The ACUPCC Implementer)


The 4th Annual American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) Climate Leadership Summit met October 12-13 in Denver, CO. The nearly 200 participants got right to work sharing challenges and best practices and outlining the future direction of the commitment. Highlights from the Summit follow.

James WoolseyJames Woolsey, former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency under President Bill Clinton, provided the opening keynote address. Mr. Woolsey’s presentation focused on the impending threats to national security that are being posed by an increasingly unstable climate. His perspective creatively threaded the current and future social and environmental implications of our reigning energy policy as well as provided some promising existing mechanisms to scale renewable energy production. Note: Mr. Woolsey’s presentation and all Summit presentations will be available on the ACUPCC website soon. (more…)

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University of Montana President, George Dennsion receives Second Nature’s 1st Annual Climate Leadership Award for Outstanding Individual Climate Leadership. Award recipients were recognized at the 4th Annual American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment Summit in Denver, CO on October 12th.

President Dennison has referred to climate change as “the leading global issue of our time” and has shown tremendous leadership in making the University of Montana (UM) a model for sustainability.  On Earth Day 2002, President Dennison signed the Talloires Declaration, rededicating UM to promoting sustainable development and social justice on local, state, national, and global levels. In the same year, President Dennison appointed the Sustainable Campus Committee to guide and document efforts by UM and by campus groups to achieve the goals of the Talloires Declaration.  President Dennison charged the SCC with developing an annual State of the Sustainable UM Campus report to be delivered each Earth Day.  In 2007, President Dennison signed American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) as a charter signatory and in 2009 he endorsed a Climate Action Plan that sets the UM’s goal of carbon neutrality by 2020.

To support these actions, President Dennison has backed the formalization of the Office of Sustainability with the addition of a full-time director, a student-driven Sustainability Center, and student experiential learning opportunities in the UM Forum for Living with Appropriate Technology (FLAT). The FLAT is university-owned housing that students are retrofitting as an example of energy-efficient and sustainable living. UM offers a minor in Climate Change Studies that is available to all disciplines and the UM Green Thread faculty development program works to incorporate sustainability into curriculum. Green Thread is offered to faculty of any discipline and is open to educators from other universities in the Montana region.

More recently, President Dennison saw through the development of UM’s 1st ‘green’ building. The Payne Family Native American Center is the first of its kind in the nation and will achieve USGBC LEED Gold status.

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