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Report Card 2009

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Carleton College
College Sustainability Report Card 2009

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Carleton College

School details:

  Overall College Sustainability Leader

  Campus Sustainability Leader

  Endowment Sustainability Leader


Endowment: $648 million as of June 30, 2008

Location: Northfield, Minnesota

Enrollment: 1,937

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  
A -
President Oden signed the Presidents Climate Commitment. The Environmental Advisory Committee advises the administration on matters concerning sustainability and directs the college's Sustainability Revolving Fund. Carleton also uses green cleaning products.
The college's carbon neutrality value statement recognizes greenhouse gas reductions as a top institutional priority. Carleton's energy supplier currently draws a small percentage of its energy from renewable sources. Carleton also unveiled its own 1.65-megawatt wind turbine in 2004 and is considering other investments in alternative energy, including plans for a second wind turbine.
Dining services buys from more than a dozen local farms and contracts with a local dairy. Fruits and vegetables are purchased from only North American sources. There are a variety of cage-free, fair trade, and organic products, and some food is sourced from a student-run, on-campus garden. Along with the on-campus community, about 50 percent of off-campus students participate in the college's composting program.
Carleton College's policy makes LEED certification the standard for all construction projects on campus. Two residence halls currently under construction are designed to be LEED Gold-certified. The new Center for the Arts is designed to achieve LEED Silver, possibly Gold, certification.
The college employs a full-time, fifth-year student intern each year to support college sustainability initiatives and practices. Four part-time sustainability assistant positions are also available to students. Among numerous sustainability-related student groups is the Green Network, a collaborative of environmental advocacy organizations.
Carleton makes shuttles and vans available to students and the Environmental Advisory Committee is exploring the implementation of car-sharing programs. There is a rideshare website for faculty and staff to arrange for carpooling. The campus activities department runs a Green Bikes program that lends bikes to students.
The college makes endowment holdings and proxy voting records available to the school community, as well as to the public via the web. Detailed information on holdings is made available only to select members of the school community.
The college aims to optimize investment return and is currently invested in renewable energy funds. The college has made a working capital commitment to invest in the Northfield Community Initiative Fund.
A committee of five students, two faculty members, and two staff members makes recommendations to the proxy subcommittee of the board of trustees on votes involving social issues.
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