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Report Card 2007

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Oberlin College
College Sustainability Report Card 2007

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Oberlin College

School details:

Endowment: $695 million as of June 30, 2006

Location: Oberlin, Ohio


Campus Survey: Yes

Endowment Survey: No


Data compiled from independent research. For information on data collection and evaluation, please see the Methods section.

Overall grade  
C +
Oberlin College's Environmental Policy Statement, created by the Environmental Policy Advisory Committee, outlines principles for college energy production and use, as well as for transportation, construction, and purchasing issues. The College is in the process of hiring a sustainability coordinator.
The College joined the Environmental Protection Agency's Green Power Leadership Club when it began supplying 60 percent of its energy needs with renewable sources in 2004. On-campus photovoltaic cells, installed above a parking structure in order to avoid limiting green space, supply more power for the Center for Environmental Studies than it consumes.
The Farm to Fork program and the Eat Local Challenge have organized local farmers and suppliers to provide organic, local foods to the College. Both initiatives are managed by the Bon Appetit Management Company. Dining services composts food scraps and recycles leftover cooking oil as biodiesel for the College's farm equipment. A comprehensive recycling program is also in place.
The College's Center for Environmental Studies was selected by the Department of Energy as one of the 30 "milestone" buildings of the twentieth century, and would be LEED Platinum-certified had it not been built before the advent of the LEED system. The building design was spearheaded by renowned environmental studies professor David Orr, who also chairs the College's environmental studies program. The building has enough solar panels to supply excess energy to the local grid. An innovative "living machine" provides a closed-loop water use, cleansing, and re-use system. The Environmental Studies Laboratory is registered under the LEED certification program, part of the College's policy requiring all new building to meet LEED Silver certification, at a minimum.
The College has no known policy of disclosure of endowment holdings or its shareholder voting record.
The College prioritizes investing to maximize profit and has not made any public statements about investigating or investing in renewable energy funds or community development loan funds.
The College has not made any public statements about active ownership or a proxy voting policy.
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