PCC / News / February 2019 /
PCC earns global honors for fighting climate change through innovation
Photos and Story by James Hill
As global emissions of carbon dioxide reach their highest levels on record, Portland Community College is doing its part to reduce these harmful gases.
PCC has earned Second Nature’s “Marks of Distinction,” which recognizes the performance, participation, and goal setting of colleges and universities to reduce harmful emissions. Marks of Distinction features data submitted by signatory institutions and showcases their progress. More than 500 colleges and universities, including PCC, became members by signing the 2007 climate leadership agreement, with approximately 140 institutions receiving Marks of Distinction.
GPSEN Sustainability Symposium
Who: PCC and the Greater Portland Sustainability Education Network (GPSEN), part of the United Nations University’s Regional Center of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development, are hosting a symposium.
When: Friday, March 8 at the Cascade Campus (705 N. Killingsworth St.).
What: Great chance to network and work on sustainability education, with a focus on collaboration, diversity, innovative problem-solving, and sustainability projects in the community. The PCC community is welcome!
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Since signing the agreement, the college has instituted two climate action plans, created an annual progress report, and formed an oversight advisory council to track progress. According to the Second Nature data, PCC has reduced its energy-related emissions by 40 percent, even though the college has increased its square footage by 30 percent thanks to voter-approved bond projects.
Briar Schoon, PCC’s sustainability manager, said these savings can be attributed to efficiency upgrades, emphasizing sustainability in new construction, and increasing renewable energy production and procurement. In addition, the college will look at other ways to reduce emissions, like employee transportation, waste management, and consumption of goods and services.
“PCC has stepped up its climate advocacy and educational efforts in the international sphere with partnerships through Second Nature, the Association for the Advancement of …