Creating a sustainable campus requires a community-wide effort to integrate sustainability into all aspects of campus life and a continued effort to adhere to the commitments American University has joined.
Under the leadership of President Kerwin, American University signed onto the Climate Commitment, the American Campuses Act on Climate pledge, and District of Columbia Mayor’s College and University Sustainability Pledge. Through these agreements, American University is committed to creating a climate neutral campus by 2020.
American University’s commitment to sustainability is reflected in the university’s strategic goals. The sustainability office was founded to help the campus adhere to its commitment to “an active pursuit of sustainability.” The sustainability office along with the sustainability working group created the university’s first carbon action plan and the 2014 sustainability plan to guide action.
Measuring progress is a key part of reaching climate neutrality. American University uses the sustainability tracking, assessments, and reporting system (STARS) to monitor progress in environmental, social, and economic categories. The sustainability office also completes an annual greenhouse gas emissions inventory.