Sustainable Columbia Annual Report Showcases Progress Towards Reducing Environmental Impact and Creating a Healthier Environment
With a 47 percent reduction in absolute GHG emissions at the Morningside campus, Columbia has exceeded its goal of cutting emissions by 35 percent over 2006 levels by 2020.
April 22, 2019
This Earth Day, Columbia University released its second Sustainable Columbia Annual Progress Report, showcasing the important work of many in the University community this past year to create a more sustainable future. This year, the report includes the Morningside, Irving Medical Center (CUIMC), and Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO) campuses.
Some highlights of the report include:
All campuses significantly reduced energy consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. With a 47 percent reduction in absolute GHG emissions at the Morningside campus, Columbia has exceeded its goal of cutting emissions by 35 percent over 2006 levels by 2020.
Columbia attained Climate Registered™ status by reporting its emissions according to The Climate Registry’s best-in-class program in order to better understand and manage the University’s carbon footprint.
The University achieved 100% renewable zero emissions electricity. This was accomplished by supplementing local solar farms meeting 75% of the Lamont campus requirements and New York hydropower with a significant purchase of renewable energy certificates from wind generation. This is another exciting step in Columbia's strategy for mitigating its emissions as the University begins to prepare a roadmap for becoming operationally carbon neutral.
Columbia maintained its leadership in sustainable building with Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certifications for the Vagelos Education Center and The Forum.
The Sustainable Leaders Network’s Workspace Certification Program grew to more than 170 green ambassadors who enhanced their vital role in promoting culture change across campus.
“There is plenty more to celebrate, and there is plenty more to do,” said David Greenberg, Executive Vice President for University Facilities and Operations. “The extraordinary energy of our University community propels our work forward. Thank you to each member of the Columbia community for your contributions and for your passion.”