Submitted on September 15, 2010; last updated on February 11, 2014
Based on the current scientifically determined need, Auburn will be climate neutral by 2050.
Our plan includes many 1-3 year actions. The relative contribution of these actions to reducing electricity use and commuting (the two largest emissions sources for Auburn) is undetermined at this point. Piloting change projects, quantification, and analysis are the first priorities for Auburn.
We have established 5 year targets that are ambitious, but we believe achievable, for a large campus with new construction projects totaling $600 million scheduled over the next 1-10 years.
In 2015, after implementing and tracking the initial projects Auburn will be able to establish additional interim targets with the hope of achieving neutrality before the current 2050 target.
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The majority of Auburn's greenhouse gas emissions are linked to purchased electricity (61%), transportation (22%), and on campus generation for heating (11%). As a result, the majority of the mitigation recommendations are focused on these three areas. At the same time, the relative contributions of different mitigation projects to reducing the campus emissions are still unclear. Auburn has recommended an approach that focuses on the implementation of a range of projects through 2015, with an increased emphasis on quantification and analysis. Based on these pilot projects, interim and final emissions reductions goals will be finalized.
Auburn University created an undergraduate minor in sustainability in 2009. This was the first interdisciplinary minor on campus not associated with a specific college or department. In preparation for the minor, Auburn has held 5 faculty training workshop, based on the models developed at Emory and Northern Arizona University to assist faculty in the integration of sustainability in courses that span all colleges on campus. In addition, the Honors program has been revised to include a two-semester sustainability symposium taught by faculty from across campus.
As part of the climate action planning process, Auburn established a specific working group focused on campus and community engagement. The recommendations of this group are focused on the broad inclusion of community participation and action in campus and community reductions (p. 16-18 in the attached file above).
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