Green classes on campus heating up

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Posted by:
Bob Best
Investor Services Lead
United States
Energy and Sustainability Services

The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that American colleges are responding to student interest in sustainability by adding green courses at a “brisk” pace.

“Some professors compare it with the boom in information technology during the 1980s, while others liken the phenomenon to interest in the civil-rights movement of the 1960s and 1970s.” the Union-Tribune reports.

The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education estimates that about 100 new undergraduate programs in sustainability were created last year, and in May a 625-member group of university president published a report to help colleges incorporate sustainability into their curricula.

One force behind the trend is real estate.  As more colleges build sustainability into their own facilities and on-campus programs (e.g. recycling, solar panels, lighting retrofits), students are noticing and asking to learn more about these initiatives.  Since buildings represent about 40% of energy consumption, it’s logical that many of these new courses will focus on the real estate aspects of sustainability in areas like architecture and buildings systems.

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