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Report Card 2011

Climate Change & Energy


The Climate Change & Energy category focuses on a school's efforts to reduce its carbon emissions and energy use. Efforts we look for include:


  • Specific commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
  • Emissions reductions that schools have already achieved
  • Conducting a carbon emissions inventory

  • Initiatives to improve energy efficiency and conservation by retrofitting appliances or power plants
  • Efforts to obtain energy from renewable resources
  • Implementation of conservation campaigns that offer incentives to monitor and reduce one’s energy consumption


Key Findings

  • Two-thirds of the schools have made a carbon reduction commitment. Increased attention to climate change is reflected at an impressive 66 percent of the schools through a commitment to carbon reduction. Fifty percent of the schools have signed the Presidents' Climate Commitment, while another 16 percent independently developed their own reduction commitments.


  • Four in five schools have conducted a carbon emissions inventory. A notable 79 percent of the schools have identified the sources and tonnage of their carbon emissions.


  • Two in five schools purchase renewable energy. Thirty-eight percent of the schools either purchase renewable energy directly from their utility providers or buy renewable energy credits equivalent to a percentage of their campus energy use.


  • More than half of the schools produce renewable energy on campus. Facilities for producing solar, wind, bio, or geothermal energy are in operation at 52 percent of the schools.


  • The average grade for the Climate Change & Energy category is B. For a summary of grade distribution for this category, please refer to the chart on the right.


Leading by Example


Grade Breakdown

66 percent of schools have made a commitment to reducing their carbon emissions.
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