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Report Card 2009

Harvard University
College Sustainability Report Card 2009

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Harvard University

School details:

 Overall College Sustainability Leader

 Campus Sustainability Leader

 

Endowment: $36,900 million as of June 30, 2008

Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts

Enrollment: 24,648

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-
The Harvard Green Campus Initiative (HGCI) has a staff of 24 full-time professionals who work to assist the Harvard community in greening all areas of its campus. The HGCI is responsible for implementing the campus-wide sustainability initiatives including a $12 million loan fund averaging a simple payback of three years and a return on investment of 33 percent per project.
The university conducts an annual greenhouse gas inventory. Harvard is seeking to reduce GHG emissions by 30 percent below a 2006 baseline by 2016, including those from new growth. For its new campus in Allston, Harvard undertook a legal agreement to reduce its development-related emissions by 50 percent for its first science building and 30 percent for the overall campus development. Three photovoltaic arrays have been installed.
Dining services spends approximately 25 percent of its budget on locally produced items. Organic produce and cage-free eggs are offered. Dining services composts postconsumer food waste and napkins, and has equipment to reclaim cooking oil.
Harvard adopted a set of green building guidelines for all construction and renovation projects costing more than $100,000. The guidelines require LEED Silver certification, at a minimum, for projects above $5 million. All new buildings on the Allston campus must meet LEED Gold standards.
The Environmental Action Committee is an undergraduate group pushing for emissions reductions and organic agriculture on campus. Numerous students work part-time with the HGCI to green the university's residential communities. There is also a recycling and energy-use competition between buildings.
The university offers employees a 50 percent discount on transit passes. Harvard partners with a car-sharing program and offers university members a discount on the membership fee. The bike program subsidizes the purchase of bikes and accessories for administrative and academic offices.
The university makes a list of endowment holdings available only to trustees and senior administrators. Detailed proxy voting records on social responsibility issues are available to the public and sent to individuals upon request.
In 1999, Harvard announced a $20 million investment in local community development loan funds and community development financial institutions focused on offering low-interest loans to support affordable housing in Boston and Cambridge.
The Advisory Committee on Shareholder Responsibility (ACSR) is composed of four faculty members, four students, and four alumni. The ACSR makes recommendations for voting on proposals involving social issues to the Corporation Committee on Shareholder Responsibility, which is responsible for voting the university’s shares.
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