Carbon Neutrality

Wesleyan has committed to going carbon neutral by 2050.  To reach this goal, Wesleyan tracks its carbon footprint annually and has evaluated its sustainability efforts three times through STARS (Sustainability Tracking, Assessment, and Rating System), a product of AASHE (Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education).  In 2016, Wesleyan created a Sustainability Action Plan to achieve carbon reduction and other sustainability goals.  In Spring 2017, President Roth was the third president nationwide to signed on in support of a national price on carbon.

Wesleyan researched the feasibility of an internal carbon price for Facilities projects, but determined it would not be sufficient to affect behavior.  Instead, Facilities is developing a life cycle cost analysis form for all high-carbon-impact projects to ensure that carbon footprint is taken into account when making said purchases.  

Wesleyan is currently in the process of developing two major elements that would move the campus closer to carbon neutrality.  More information will be made public as these elements and others develop.  

  • A utilities carbon neutrality master plan creates a roadmap for ways to reduce campus energy use and power 100% of heating, cooling, and electricity needs within the campus microgrid (central campus) through renewable energy sources.  Wesleyan is investigating funding opportunities for this plan and for ways to expand these efforts to buildings not connected to the microgrid.  
  • The Sustainability Office is developing a carbon offsets program to offset 100% of emissions from employee and study abroad air travel by 2022.  More information will be made public as this project is developed.