Climate Action Planning

Our Climate Commitment

HSU signed onto the Second Nature Climate Commitment in 2016, setting us on a course to curtail greenhouse gas emissions from campus buildings, operations and related activities, and to integrate climate adaptation into campus planning.  A year later we released the HSU Climate Action Plan (CAP 1.0), with the goal of reducing facility and fleet greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. We achieved that goal (see the 2019-20 CAP Progress Report) and have continued to meet resilience milestones along the Climate Commitment timeline.

HSU signed the Second Nature Climate Commitment in 2016, completed the Climate Action Plan in 2017, and conducted resilience planning in 2018 and 2019.

Towards Carbon Neutrality and Climate Resilience

Now it is time to go further. As an update to the initial plan, the CAP 2.0 will provide a roadmap for further drawing down emissions. It combines additional reduction strategies with efforts to sequester carbon and offset GHG emissions to achieve carbon neutrality by 2045. The plan also lays out actions to foster equity and the integration of sustainability and climate action into all facets of the university. Additionally, CAP 2.0 includes strategies to ensure the campus can withstand and recover rapidly from climate change driven disruptions. Watch this short video on the CAP 2.0!

 Our carbon neutral future is nearly free of fossil fuels, bio-culturally divers, engaged and resilient. Enhancements to campus infrastructure, ecosystem services, mobility, emergency operations and social systems ensure we rapidly recover from disruptions

Our Carbon Footprint

The Office of Sustainability tracks HSU’s greenhouse gas emissions in metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, or MTCDE. Go to the Sustainability Dashboard to track our progress towards meeting GHG, energy, waste reduction and other sustainability goals.

 

Campus GHG emissions from 2016-17 to 2019-20 show a declined in emissions over time

 

HSU is also paying attention to its nitrogen footprint – the total amount of reactive nitrogen released to the environment as a result of resource consumption. Nitrogen is necessary in some form for all species on earth – however, when emitted in high concentrations, nitrogen can be a pollutant, causing smog, acid rain, dead zones, and other negative impacts to ecosystems and to human health. Fossil fuel combustion and food production are the two main ways nitrogen is released to the environment. 

To learn more about nitrogen footprints, and to calculate your personal nitrogen footprint, go to www.n-print.org.

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