Top Ten Environmental Schools by Sierra

Posted: 08/14/2013  browse the blog archive
Top Ten Environmental Schools by Sierra

On August 14, environmental magazine Sierra, published by the Sierra Club, released its seventh annual report ranking American universities according to their degree of environmentalism.  The Cool School 2013 report is intended to guide prospective students wishing to attend “green” schools and to reward those institutions that are dedicated to sustainability. 

In 2013, the top-ranked school was the University of Connecticut, followed by Dickinson College, University of California at Irvine, University of California at Davis, Cornell University, Green Mountain College, Stanford University, Georgia Institute of Technology, American University, and University of California at Santa Barbara.

Sierra calculated each school’s sustainability rating based off of quantifiable factors such as the number of sustainability courses taught, having vegan courses available in the dining halls, using LED lighting in its buildings, using renewable energy sources, and having a bicycle-sharing program available to students.

To be eligible to be ranked, schools had to complete an extensive survey, the Campus Sustainability Data Collector, which collected data regarding their sustainability practices.  In 2013, 162 schools submitted questionnaires; a complete ranking of all 162 schools can be found on the Sierra website.  Although a perfect score is 1,000, the top-ranked Huskies received a score of only 850.  Sierra speculates that this may indicate that although much effort has already been exerted to promote environmentalism, there is still room for improvement.  The survey is free to complete and is open to all four-year colleges and universities in the United States. 

The Chanler Group is actively engaged in the review and analysis of incentive-based renewable energy programs to determine potential benefits to our clients.  Global energy consumption continues to increase each year and, with this increase, the demand for safe, clean, and unlimited energy is on the rise.  The Federal and State governments promote this interest through a variety of financially-beneficial incentives.  Our understanding of these laws allows us to guide homeowners, businesses, and/or developers through the various ways to take advantage of these incentive-based benefits.  With the appreciation that renewable energy laws and regulations are constantly changing, The Chanler Group is committed to investing in its understanding and practice of this area of law.

Photo Credit: Students growing vegetables at the University's Spring Valley Farm (Bret Eckhardt/UConn Photo), Bottom: UConn bicycles are available for loan (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo).