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Columbia College Chicago
Greenhouse Gas
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Greenhouse Gas

ghgColumbia takes responsibility for its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.  GHG is invisible, and most of our campus community is not fully aware of how it is produced here at Columbia. To address that fact, we have compiled a GHG baseline inventory using Fiscal Year 2010 data. Since the baseline, we have updated our GHG inventory using FY2012. For information on our GHG inventories, view reports here. 

What are we doing?

Baseline Inventory (FY10)
We have conducted a baseline inventory of GHG emissions consistent with the ACUPCC, including Scope 1 and 2, as well as commuting and air travel. The data for this inventory was from our Fiscal Year 2010. We used the Clean Air Cool Planet carbon calculator. View the report here.
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Updated Inventory (FY12)
In 2013 we conducted an update to our baseline inventory. We followed the same guidelines as in our baseline. New to the FY12 was the inclusion of solid waste (composting efforts) and purchased paper. We used the new Clean Air Cool Planet Carbon Map online calculator and the last version of the CACP spreadsheet tool. View the report here.
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Renewable Energy Credits (RECs)
For FY2011 we purchased RECs equal to 100% of electricity consumption. This was an increase from FY10 when we purchased RECs for 30% of electricity used throughout the campus (and 100% at our Media Production Center). As of FY13, we will not further our purchasing of RECs, rather returning this spending to a Revolving Sustainability Fund targeting smaller infrastructure projects (such as the installation of bottle water refilling stations).
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Tracking Methodologies
We have established tracking mechanisms for collecting utility data such as using Energy Star Portfolio Manager. Tracking mechanism were also organized for usage of refrigerants, solid waste, air travel, and purchased paper. We released a commuter survey and have a methodology for crafting future surveys.
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Greenhouse Gas Green Team
As part of the Sustainability Roadmap, Columbia has created a Green Team focusing on Greenhouse Gas. The team members consist of engineering and facilities staff as well as the college's Sustainability Manager. Below are some of the ideal goals and actions for this team.

The Greenhouse Gas Emissions Green Team's Goals:

  • Keep an up-to-date Climate Action Plan with the focus on GHG emission-reduction.
  • Implement ongoing GHG tracking, management and reporting.
The Greenhouse Gas Emissions Green Team's Actions:
  • Communicate with the Columbia community to connect GHG emissions to individuals' daily lives and behavior.

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