Monday, October 27, 2008

Kiss those polar bear cubs goodbye?

Colleges Missing Their Climate Targets Goals, Says CSM : TreeHugger
Not to be Debbie-Downer this Monday morning, but the Christian Science Monitor reports that colleges and universities, not unlike countries that made climate commitments, are having a hard time meeting those goals.
Over 580 college and university campus presidents across the US have all agreed to create an inventory of their carbon footprint and within two years set a date to make their campus carbon neutral. As this program is still relatively new, all campuses are still in the quantifying stage. Carbon footprint estimates were due this fall to the ACUPCC (American College and University President's Climate Commitments) program, but actually getting these numbers has proven to be more difficult than thought. Only 190 out of 580 colleges that made commitments have turned in any data. After the low-hanging fruit, like turning out lights and setting up recycling bins, colleges have to start asking the tough questions and getting into budgets in order to achieve bigger and bigger savings. Quantifying the footprint of multiple campuses, classrooms, operations, travel, purchasing, basically every aspect of campus life is, not surprisingly, taking longer than expected and its up to college faculty and often the Campus Sustainability Coordinator to figure it out.

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