From its founding, Second Nature has worked to expand higher education’s ability to solve pressing sustainability challenges. Since 2006, that focus has been aimed at addressing the largest environmental challenge that civilization has faced: global climate change. This was the launch year of the Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitments, now the longest standing voluntary carbon reduction program in the world, and through it the Climate Leadership Network of over 600 universities and colleges formed.
Second Nature’s 2023 Strategic Plan builds on our history of implementing a robust, network-based climate leadership strategy, using our experience to drive equitable and holistic climate solutions while embracing the diversity within the sector. This new plan represents a shift and a third phase of growth for Second Nature, viewing operational decarbonization as a milestone in a suite of climate action goals — goals that are achievable through a “whole-of-higher-education” approach.
Second Nature is focusing on four strategic pathways: Diversify to Unify, Generate, Champion, and Excel, to leverage the complementary strengths within the sector, build resources to advance institutional climate action, increase public visibility of higher education’s role in solving climate challenges, and enhance our own practices to support our Network.
Our 2019-2022 Strategic Plan focuses on the imperative for exponential growth in climate progress to work towards 50% decarbonization in the US economy by 2030 based on advice from the best available science. This three year plan focuses on supporting network performance and cross-sector activity with the core of our strategy centered around the expansion of valued climate services.
We will continue activating more schools as climate leaders and driving climate action with other sectors, but need “better and more of it” within this 11-year window of opportunity to act. Leveraging higher education’s innovative research and partnership strengths will be key to proactively overcome the climate emergency.
A visual background document about the higher education sector as a climate accelerator.
Click on the button below to learn more about the impact Second Nature has made over the past several years by reading our annual impact reports. You can also access other similar reports on this page for both the Climate Leadership Network and the University Climate Change Coalition (UC3). If you are looking for our financial profile and statements, you can find that information on this same page as well.