In coordination with national experts, Second Nature has developed publications and resources to help signatories of implement the Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitments address many of the interrelated aspects of colleges and universities fulfilling their climate commitments.
Many of the publications posted here, were written prior to the launch of the Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitments on October 5, 2015. They are, however, still relevant to college and university leaders and practitioners of sustainability as institutions work towards their Commitment goals.
On-site Energy for Higher Education White Paper (Siemens)
On-Site Energy for Higher Education White Paper
This paper by Siemens, a Second Nature partner, explores in detail how improvements in energy efficiency on campuses, such as microgrids and local renewables, can significantly reduce CO2 emissions and lower energy costs. “As costs drop for deploying smarter, more flexible grids, many educational institutions are looking for new ways to acquire, store, and consume the energy they require in order to foster more reliable, predictable, and cost-effective operations… New breakthroughs in on-site power generation (such as solar, wind, and thermal energy), combined heat and power (which enables energy generation through reuse of waste heat), and energy storage (so that energy can be sold back to the grid when demand is high) can assist higher education institutions formulate a more holistic, predictable, and independent energy strategy.”
Campus Resilience Challenge
On August 14, 2018, the City of Los Angeles Mayor’s Office of Resilience –in collaboration with 100 Resilient Cities and Second Nature –convened a forum on campus resilience at the Los Angeles Emergency Operations Center with representatives from several regional academic institutions, nonprofit organizations, and public sector entities. This report summarizes the forum’s findings in the context of a broader effort to build strong and connected communities and provides a roadmap for future collaboration in advancing campus resilience across the region.
Research for Solutions: Convening Stakeholders to Galvanize Local Climate Action
Since the University Climate Change Coalition’s (UC3) launch in February 2018, UC3 universities have convened climate leaders in their region from local and state government, private industry and NGOs at cross-sector forums. In a report entitled Research for Solutions: Convening Stakeholders to Galvanize Local Climate Action UC3 highlights how research institutions can play an invaluable role in stepping-up climate action in their communities. Each of the schools is making ambitious strides to reduce their institutional footprint and increase resilience to the shocks of climate change, read the report to find out exactly how.
Resilience Planning for Washington D.C. Universities
The District of Columbia Mayor’s College and University Sustainability Pledge, signed in 2012, is a cross sector agreement between the District higher education sector and local government to advance sustainability. The District Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) urban sustainability staff, along with Sustainability Directors from partner universities, invited Second Nature to help organize a one-day workshop on climate resilience. The goal was to increase higher ed. institutions’ understanding of District resilience planning initiatives, and provide a framework for colleges and universities to undertake their own resilience assessment and planning processes on campus. Download
How to Conduct a Campus-Community Resilience Assessment
The resilience assessment is meant to provide a baseline of current resilience activities on campus and in the community, develop initial indicators of resilience through a multi-stakeholder process, and identify current vulnerabilities related to climate change. Schools should keep a particular eye on overlaps and gaps in assets and vulnerabilities between the campus and community. Download.