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25 Greenest Colleges

Green Schools

College rivalries are nothing new, whether it is academics or athletics. Now there's new competition over which are the greenest. Colleges across the country are making sustainability a priority to both help the environment  and raise their profile. Kaplan chose these 25 schools as the greenest for its 2009 college guide. Kaplan factored in environmental campus projects, courses offered and on campus student groups. Take a look at the alphabetical listing.
Photo: Berea College

College rivalries are nothing new, whether it is academics or athletics. Now there's new competition over which are the greenest.

Colleges across the country are making sustainability a priority to both help the environment  and raise their profile. Kaplan chose these 25 schools as the greenest for its 2009 college guide. Kaplan factored in environmental campus projects, courses offered and on campus student groups. Take a look at the alphabetical listing.

Arizona State University

Arizona State University
Photo: Arizona State University

Tempe, Arizona

The school’s garden produces food that can be sold to  vendors, used by the campus dining room or donated to charity. Besides the farm, the university gives its staff three-wheeled bicycles to get around campus.

Bates College

Bates College
Photo: AP

Lewiston, Maine

In order to reduce waste, Bates hosts The Clean Sweep, an annual tag sale that takes items left behind by students in their dorms, which are then sold to other students.

Berea College

Berea College
Photo: Berea College

Berea, Kentucky

The historic campus has been renovated so that all of its historical buildings are brought up to green standards. Berea also has a college farm that produces green vegetables for the on campus dining room.

Bowdoin College                 

Bowdoin College                 
Photo: sglickman

Brunswick, Maine

Committed to reduce CO2 emissions by 40 percent, Bowdoin has purchased wind-generated power, instituted single-stream recycling and renovate buildings to be more sustainable.

University of California             

University of California             
Photo: Lawliet89

California 

The system of 10 schools has pledged to generate 10 megawatts of renewable power by 2014 and increase the use of low-emission vehicles on its campus by 50 percent in 2010.

Carleton College

Carleton College
Photo: AP

Northfield, Minnesota

The college overhauled most of its buildings by changing light bulbs, as well as using other environmentally friendly materials and appliances. In 2004, construction was finished on a wind turbine located just outside the campus.

Carnegie Mellon University         

Carnegie Mellon University         
Photo: Jimmy - Lin

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

In 1990, Carnegie Mellon launched an extensive recycling program. It recycled 682 tons of waste last year. The university also powers some if its campus using alternative energy sources.

College of the Atlantic        

College of the Atlantic        
Photo: Udall Legacy

Bar Harbor, Maine 

One of the highlights of College of the Atlantic's sustainability practices is offering students and faculty the opportunity to borrow bicycles for a day, or an entire semester, free of charge.

Dartmouth College        

Dartmouth College           
Photo: Brave Sir Robin

Hanover, New Hampshire  

Students started the Sustainable Move-Out in 2006, an event where they collect appliances and room decorations at the end of the year, store them through the summer and sell them to incoming students in September, reducing the amount of waste the school produces. 

Dickinson College

Carlisle, Pennsylvania

Dickinson's college farm is in the process of expanding from 1.5 acres to 4 acres of vegetable production, which is used for the school's dining services. Students who apply for a summer internship at the farm can live in off-grid yurts (tent-like huts) powered by solar panels.

Duke University 

                  
Photo: lordsutch

Durham, North Carolina 

In an effort to conserve water, Duke has handed out 9,000 free low-flow showerheads to employees and off-campus students, replaced automatic flush toilets with manual ones and turned off decorative fountains in the school's garden.

Grand Valley State University           

Grand Valley State University           
Photo: kuba425

Allendale, Michigan 

Campus dining services at GVSU purchase food, mostly from local vendors since it requires less fuel to deliver. They also only use biodegradable plastic bags, cups and containers.

Harvard University        

Harvard University        
Photo: _Gene_

Cambridge, Massachusetts 

Harvard recently announced a goal of reducing its greenhouse gas emissions 30 percent by 2016. It is reducing the amount of energy it uses, as well as installing solar panels that produce hot water and low-flow water fixtures in its bathrooms.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology   

Massachusetts Institute of Technology   
Photo: Dan4th

Cambridge, Massachusetts 

In 2006, MIT retrofitted its lighting at many of the school's athletic facilities -- a move that will save $120,000 in electricity bills annually. It also uses an outdoor lighting Web-based control system for the soccer field and tennis courts that allows those who book the spaces to have the lights go on and off automatically at a specific time.

Middlebury College

Middlebury College

Middlebury, Vermont

Besides the common energy efficiency initiatives, Middlebury encourages environmental activism. It launched Step It Up, an organization that produces rallies and events across the country to bring more attention to global warming.

University of New Hampshire                      

University of New Hampshire                      
Photo: bdjsb7

Durham, New Hampshire 

Reducing its dependency on fossil fuels, the university will soon tap into a nearby landfill -- and its methane gas -- for 85 percent of its energy needs. The initiative will pay for itself in 10 years.

>Video: More on UNH's Green Initiatives

University of North Carolina         

University of North Carolina         
Photo: valarauka

Chapel Hill, North Carolina

The school is committed to conserving energy, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and integrating sustainability throughout its curriculum.

Oberlin College  

Oberlin College      
Photo: La Sequencia

Oberlin, Ohio

Starting in 2006, Oberlin adopted a policy that any new construction on the campus must meet the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED silver standard.

Oregon State University           

Oregon State University           
Photo: saml123

Corvallis, Oregon 

To reduce waste, the school encourages two-sided photocopying, reusing envelopes for campus mail and using recycled supplies.

Penn State University        

Penn State University        
Photo: acidcookie

University Park, Pennsylvania

Penn State's Ecological Systems Laboratory is a natural water treatment facility that breaks down wastewater. The lab can clean 1,000 gallons of water a day.

Santa Clara University  

Santa Clara University  
Photo: Dvortygirl

Santa Clara, California   

Through its extensive recycling program, the school says it recycled 85 tons of cardboard, 137 tons of paper, 25,100 pounds of tin, 1,000 pounds of aluminum, 12,600 pounds of plastic, 27,300 pounds of glass, and 216 tons of green waste in 2005.

Tufts University         

Tufts University         
Photo: JoeBehrPalmSprings

Medford, Massachusetts

Tufts says it created the first university environmental policy in 1990. The school implemented solar panels and a complete recycling program.

University of Vermont          

University of Vermont             
Photo: rachaelvoorhees

Burlington, Vermont 

In 2007, UVM completed the construction of its student union, the Dudley H. Davis Center. It has 175 sensors placed throughout the building that provide data on the amount of energy used for electricity, water usage and heating. Those interested in how much energy is being consumed can view that information on a Website, which is constantly updated.

University of Washington         

University of Washington         
Photo: nordique

Seattle, Washington 

Replacing toilets and urinals at the school’s bathrooms is conserving millions of gallons of water. Swapping 1,500 older toilets for newer ones saves about 30 million gallon of water a year, while installing 100 water free urinals saves 40 million gallons of water annually.

Yale University  

Yale University  
Photo: Adam Solomon

New Haven, Connecticut

The university is committed to reducing greenhouse-gas emissions to 10 percent below 1990 levels by the year 2020. To reach that goal, it is building more energy-efficient buildings, utilizing more renewable sources of energy and purchasing carbon offsets.

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