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Climate Action Roadmap

Climate change is one of the most serious challenges facing the world today. As a high priority goal of the Sustainability Plan, launched in fall 2018 by President Rowe, William & Mary committed to creating a Climate Action Roadmap for the W&M campus, including all graduate schools. 

W&M has an ambitious 2030 carbon neutral campus goal and a partnership with the University of Virginia to support each other’s climate action progress. This campus carbon neutrality goal is part of a larger Climate Action Roadmap that focuses on what W&M can uniquely contribute to broader climate action as a higher education institution.

Climate Action Roadmap Goals
Goals broken up into Education & Academics, Carbon Neutrality, and Community Action
Education & Academics
  1. Curriculum & Teaching: Encourage academic units to further incorporate
    climate and sustainability into teaching and research.
  2. Research & Scholarship: Encourage academic units to further incorporate
    climate and sustainability into research and scholarship.
  3. For All Time Coming: Build student sustainability knowledge while providing
    experiential and applied learning opportunities anchored in the Tidewater
    region from their first-year to their last – and beyond.
  4. Employee Development: Sustainability is part of every new employee’s training
    and all employee’s professional development offerings.
  5. Sustainability Certificates, Coastal Resiliency: Explore a coastal resiliency
    certificate with the potential to create a suite of sustainability certificates.
  6. Curriculum & Research Support: Provide tools, resources, and opportunities
    for faculty in all areas to incorporate sustainability into curriculum and research.
2030 Carbon Neutral Campus
  1. 100% Renewable Electricity: Source an equivalent of 100% of the main campus
    and all graduate schools’ electricity from renewables.
  2. Heating/Cooling Strategy: Create a strategy to address the use of fossil fuels
    used in buildings for heating and cooling.
  3. 15% Building Energy Reduction: Reduce building energy use 15%.
  4. Net Zero Campus Fleet: Create a strategy for a campus fleet that has net zero
    carbon emissions.
  5. Carbon Proxy Program: Explore a Carbon Proxy Program, which assigns a
    “what-if” price to offsetting emissions for consideration in decision-making
    such as capital projects.
  6. Higher Education Resilience Planning Worksheet: Explore a campus resilience
    planning worksheet tailored for higher education grounds and operations.
Community Action
  1. 65% Waste Diversion: Reduce the volume of municipal waste going to the
    landfill by 65%.
  2. Sustainable Procurement: Incorporate social
    and environmental sustainability as a factor in purchasing practices.
  3. Plant-Forward Food: Increase plant-based and plant-forward options offered
    through the university, with an emphasis on sourcing locally.
  4. Green Transit Design: Expand and incentivize green transportation options on
    and off campus by collaborating locally and regionally.
  5. Hiring Practices: Offer convenient resources for those that would like to hire
    employees who apply a lens of sustainability in their area of expertise.
  6. Study Abroad Program: Develop resources, procedures and events that allow
    for students, faculty and staff to plan international travel that enriches through
    a global perspective, builds positive relationships with host communities, and
    improves environmental impacts.

View the Full Climate Action Roadmap (PDF)

The goals were drafted last academic year by Sustainability working groups composed of students, faculty and staff from across campus.

Venn diagram with 2030 Carbon Neutral Campus, Education & Research, and W&M Community Action overlapping with Learning & Empowerment W&M in the center