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UNH Is "Campus Sustainability Leader," Says College Sustainability Report Card 2008

By Beth Potier, Media Relations
October 24, 2007

UNH is one of just 25 universities nationwide to achieve Campus Sustainability Leader status from the Sustainable Endowments Institute’s College Sustainability Report Card 2008, released today. UNH received A grades (on a scale of A through F) in four of five campus categories: administration, climate change and energy, food and recycling, and transportation.

The College Sustainability Report Card 2008 assesses the 200 U.S. and Canadian colleges and universities with the largest endowments, ranging from $230 million to nearly $35 billion (UNH’s endowment is $235 million). The entire report is available to download here: www.endowmentinstitute.org/sustainability.

“We have a long and proud history of sustainability here at UNH, and it’s gratifying to gain national recognition for our efforts,” said President Mark Huddleston. “I commend our University Office of Sustainability for engaging the entire UNH community in the wise and thoughtful use of our natural, intellectual and financial resources.”

In the College Sustainability Report Card, UNH was specifically recognized for having the nation’s oldest endowed university sustainability program; for its renewable landfill gas-to-energy project that will reduce the university’s emissions an estimated 57 percent below 1990 levels; and for its extensive transportation system that includes free campus shuttles, alternative-fueled buses, and free bicycle rentals.

“Sustainability is a core value at UNH and central to our mission and identity,” said Tom Kelly, UNH’s chief sustainability officer. “Administrators, faculty, staff, and students work together to make UNH a model sustainable learning community, and we are proud of the operational work that the Report Card reviewed as well as our significant curricula, research, and engagement efforts. We commend the Sustainable Endowments Institute for bringing to light higher education's lead role in promoting sustainability.”

Guided by the University Office of Sustainability, UNH integrates sustainability across the university’s curriculum, operations, research and engagement, focusing its efforts on biodiversity education, climate education, culture and sustainability, and food and society.

UNH is ranked by the U.S. Department of Energy as in the top five percent for energy efficiency among similar colleges and universities, and it was the first university in the nation to earn the Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star rating for a residence hall and the first land-grant university in New England to sign the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment. Its Wildcat Transit is the state’s largest public transit system and is fueled almost exclusively by alternative fuels.

UNH is also the first land-grant university in the nation with an organic research dairy; it is home to an active Organic Garden Club, a food waste composting program, a Local Harvest initiative that brings locally produced products in to the university’s dining halls, and curriculum and research in climate science, sustainable engineering, natural resources, and sustainable agriculture.

Discover more about sustainability at UNH at www.sustainableunh.unh.edu.


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