CMC signs the national college presidents’ climate pledge |

CMC signs the national college presidents’ climate pledge

Staff report Post IndependentGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado

Colorado Mountain College has joined 653 colleges and universities in a presidential pledge to sustainability.In a Sept. 25 ceremony at the college’s newest – and greenest – building in Breckenridge, CMC President Dr. Stan Jensen signed the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment. “This national initiative attests to the college’s commitment to achieving climate neutrality and to providing 21st century learners the knowledge to establish a culture of sustainability,” said Nancy Genova, the college’s executive vice president for initiatives and innovations.Institutions signing the climate commitment have promised to:• Complete a greenhouse gas emissions inventory within one year of signing the agreement;• Establish a climate action plan within two years that includes a target date and interim milestones for becoming climate neutral;• Take immediate steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by implementing at least two of a list of seven tangible actions while the climate action plan is being developed;• Integrate sustainability into the curriculum and make it a part of the educational experience; and, • Make their inventory, climate action plan and progress reports publicly available. CMC has also been developing new academic courses that focus on preparing workers for jobs in the 21st century green market.For instance, CMC recently received approval from state higher education officials to offer three solar energy certificate programs in basic solar photovoltaic, solar thermal installation and photovoltaic installation.Several campuses are also offering courses to prepare contractors for certification as National Home Builders Association Certified Green Professionals, North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners and Building Performance Institute Energy Analysts.Last year, CMC entered into an energy performance contract with the Colorado Governor’s Energy Office.”This contract focuses on increasing building efficiency and renewable energy sources of our facilities,” said Genova. In fulfilling that contract, the college is undergoing a competitive bidding process for energy audits of its many buildings. Having those audits in hand will create an energy-use baseline and help the college form a plan to reduce energy costs.”One of our cross-college teams studying ways to improve our internal processes presented very practical recommendations on how we can be more sustainable,” Jensen said. “As with our other process improvement teams, we’ll be actively measuring our progress on this front.”

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