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Campus Climate Initiatives

Antioch U New England Pursues Carbon Neutrality over 10 Years

Antioch University New England, a small, private, mostly graduate-level college, said it expects to go carbon-neutral by the year 2020. The Keene, NH-based institution is launching a 10-year climate action plan to achieve carbon neutrality by the year 2020, encompassing multiple initiatives. The New England campus is one of five Antioch campuses in the United States. Overall, the university has about 3,500 students; about a thousand attend classes at the Keene location.

A primary goal of the plan, the university said in a statement, is to decrease campus greenhouse gas emissions by reducing reliance on fossil fuel-based sources for electricity, heat, business travel, commuting, and waste disposal. The university will also strengthen its inclusion of sustainability-related content in its academic curriculum and expand climate change-related research and public education programs.

Progress will be reviewed annually by President David Caruso and his cabinet.

The plan was developed by a task force that included nearly three dozen faculty and staff members, students, alumni, and engineering and green building experts. That puts it into the company of about 245 other institutions that have also developed a comparable plan as part of their participation in the American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment.

The plan states that Antioch will pursue a "host of initiatives" to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, including reduction of thermal and electrical loads through building and lighting improvements, behavior-change initiatives, reduction and offsetting of business travel, motivating the campus community to use alternative transportation, and the possible installation of geothermal and photovoltaic solar systems.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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