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Report Card 2009

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Bates College
College Sustainability Report Card 2009

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Bates College

School details:

  Grade higher than last year

  Campus Sustainability Leader


Endowment: $276 million as of June 30, 2007

Location: Lewiston, Maine

Enrollment: 1,743

Type: Private


Campus Survey: Yes

Dining Survey: Yes

Endowment Survey: Yes


Data compiled from independent research and survey responses from schools. For information on data collection and evaluation, please see the Methodology  section.

Overall grade  
President Hansen signed the Presidents Climate Commitment. The college's environmental policy views government regulation as the "minimally acceptable standard" and is in the process of developing a comprehensive environmental policy on purchasing, energy management, and transportation. Sustainable Bates oversees all initiatives and maintains a comprehensive website. The Committee on Environmental Responsibility, composed of faculty, students, and staff, is charged with designing a climate neutral action plan.
Bates is aggressively pursuing its commitment to climate neutrality. The college purchases 100 percent renewable electricity for main campus buildings, and some campus boilers use B5 biodiesel. Bates consistently seeks to decrease its energy consumption via annual efficiency upgrade projects across campus, as well as through energy conservation programs. The college has successfully reduced their emissions to below 1990 levels.
Bates works with more than 30 local growers to purchase 28 percent of its food. Dining services has reduced its waste stream by 83 percent via a comprehensive waste management strategy. The college's comprehensive recycling program organizes an end-of-year sale for departing students' unwanted items.
Bates requires all new construction to meet at least LEED Silver specifications. A new dining hall and residence facility are LEED Silver equivalent. There is a permanent annual capital investment line in the budget for energy efficiency retrofits.
Bates has two environmental student groups: an Eco-Reps program and a sustainability-themed house. New student orientation includes a session dedicated to campus sustainability. The college organizes inter-dorm recycling and energy competitions and hosts an annual "Trashion Show."
Bates owns three electric vehicles and has a policy to purchase fuel-efficient, hybrid, or electric models when possible. The college has a commercial car-sharing program on campus and participates in the statewide rideshare program. For a small fee, the Bates Bike Co-op offers access to ten community bicycles.
The college makes a list of endowment holdings available to trustees, senior administrators, and other select members of the school community. The proxy voting record is not made public.
In 1997, Bates adopted a policy on socially responsible investing, which ensures that the college invests in companies that engage in "ethical and reputable" business practices that sustain and respect the natural environment. The college does not invest in renewable energy funds or community development loan funds.
The college asks that its investment managers handle the details of proxy voting.
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