2014 Carbon Inventory Report

Montgomery County Community College’s 2014 Carbon Inventory Report is now available.

Each January, the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) requires participating institutions to submit an inventory of anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from their campuses. The College submitted its 2014 report on Jan. 2, 2015.

To assist with the inventory, the College uses Campus Carbon Calculator, developed by Clean Air-Cool Planet (CA-CP) and now operated by the University of New Hampshire and Sightlines. All emissions are recorded in metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents (MTCOE).

GHG emissions are divided into three scopes. Scope 1 includes natural gas, college vehicles and agriculture; scope 2 is electricity; and scope 3 is students, faculty and staff commuter emissions, air travel and solid waste.

In 2013-2014, the College’s scope 1 emissions increased by 2,162 Mcf (1 Mcf = 1,000 cubic feet of natural gas) over the previous year. The increase was due, in part, to a colder average winter temperature of 34 degrees, in addition to the Culinary Arts Institute coming fully online. 1,168 Mcf were attributed to the CAI.

Note: 1 Mcf = 1,000 cubic feet = 1 MMBtu (based on natural gas approximate heat value of 1,000 Btu per cubic foot)

Note: 1 Mcf = 1,000 cubic feet = 1 MMBtu (based on natural gas approximate heat value of 1,000 Btu per cubic foot)

The College’s scope 2 emissions dropped by 684,184 kWh (kilowatt-hour) over the previous year, despite the CAI coming fully online, which added 391,680 kWh. The decrease is a result of chiller plant optimization projects at Central and West campuses as part of MCCC’s Guaranteed Energy Services Agreement with Siemens Industry Inc. The College also offset 7,585 metric tons of CO2 by purchasing Renewable Energy Certificates (REC) through its electricity supplier. Combined, scope 2 reduction efforts enabled the College to save $120,826 on its electric bill in 2013-2014.

Carbon Table 2 rev

As a commuter institution, transportation emissions, scope 3, significantly contribute to the College’s carbon footprint, despite a reduction of 1,263,862 total vehicle miles traveled in 2013-14, due, in part, to a slight overall decline in enrollment. However, these numbers do not reflect miles saved through transportation programs like the Campus Shuttle and Zimride.

Carbon Table 3 rev

The below chart summarizes all emissions calculations, which totaled 11,678 for 2014–the lowest total number since the College began calculating GHG emissions in 2007.

Carbon Table 4 rev

~ by Alana J. Mauger and Charlie Scandone

PHOTOS: Bennett Lectureship with Author Bob Reiss

Acclaimed author and journalist Bob Reiss discussed “The Arctic Century is Upon Us” at Montgomery County Community College on March 9. The presentation was part of the Richard K. Bennett Distinguished Lectureship for Peace and Social Justice series. Following his public lecture, Reiss signed copies of his book,  “The Eskimo and the Oil Man,” after which he met with Honors Biology students.

Photos by Sandi Yanisko

Author Bob Reiss Presents Lecture: ‘The Arctic Century Is Upon Us’

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Photo courtesy of Bob Reiss

As the ice continually melts in the Arctic, controversy ensues between development by oil companies and the protection of this fragile environment and its native people. Acclaimed author and journalist Bob Reiss will discuss “The Arctic Century is Upon Us” when he visits Montgomery County Community College on Monday, March 9, from 12:30-2 p.m. in the Science Center Theater, 340 DeKalb Pike, Blue Bell. A simulcast of the presentation will be shown in the South Hall Community Room at the College’s West Campus, 101 College Drive, Pottstown.

The community is invited to attend this free presentation but tickets are required. For tickets, visit mc3.edu/BennettLecture or call 215-641-6518. Following the presentation, Reiss will be signing his book, “The Eskimo and the Oil Man,” in the Science Center lobby in Blue Bell.

As a best-selling author of 19 books, Reiss has published both fiction and non-fiction books, as well as numerous articles in “The Washington Post Magazine,” “Smithsonian,” “Parade,” “Rolling Stone” and other national publications. This New York City native started his career as a journalist for the “Chicago Tribune” and also has worked as a correspondent for “Outside Magazine.” He graduated from Northwestern University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and from the University of Oregon with an MFA.

To gain expertise of the Arctic situation, Reiss spent three years traveling in the U.S. high north and interviewing scientists, diplomats, military planners, Eskimo whale hunters and politicians. As a result, he shares a compelling story of the situation as seen through the eyes of an Inupiat Eskimo leader and the head of an oil company seeking to drill offshore.

According to William Reilly, co-chair of the Deepwater Horizon Commission, Chairman Emeritus of the World Wildlife Fund and former EPA Administrator: “Reiss has taken a highly charged and divisive subject and gotten inside the lives and values of the principles with empathy and insight. ‘The Eskimo and the Oil Man’ is a most illuminating contribution to issues that will become more important as new discoveries follow drilling offshore.”

This presentation is part of the ongoing Richard K. Bennett Distinguished Lectureship for Peace and Social Justice series, which was established at the College in 1981. The lectureship reflects the ideals of Richard Bennett, a Quaker who devoted his life work to accomplishing peace and justice through non-violent efforts.

~ by Diane VanDyke

Student Environmental Club Leads 2015 RecycleMania Efforts

At a recent club fair, Montgomery County Community College Environmental Club Co-Presidents Natalya Martin (left) and Natalie DeSantis showcased the amount of recyclable materials that are mistakenly thrown in the trash during a given lunch hour at the Central Campus. Photo by Alana J. Mauger

At a recent club fair, Montgomery County Community College Environmental Club Co-Presidents Natalya Martin (left) and Natalie DeSantis showcased the amount of recyclable materials that are mistakenly thrown in the trash during a given lunch hour at the Central Campus. Photo by Alana J. Mauger

Students from Montgomery County Community College’s  Environmental Club are leading the institution’s 2015 RecycleMania efforts, a nationwide tournament among colleges and universities designed to increase student awareness of campus recycling and waste minimization.

After finishing second in Pennsylvania in the Waste Minimization category during the 2014 challenge—collecting 17.248 pounds of combined trash and recycling per capita—the College expects to maintain momentum in this, its eighth consecutive year of competing.

The 2015 competition kicked off on Feb. 1 and continues eight weeks through March 28.

During the program, campuses compete in different contests to see which institution can collect the largest amount of recyclables per capita, the largest amount of total recyclables, the least amount of trash per capita or have the highest recycling rate. Final results will be announced in mid-April.

In 2014, 461 colleges comprised of 6.3 million students and staff recycled and/or composted 89 million pounds of waste.  In addition, Recyclemania 2014 resulted in a reduction of 126,597 metric tons of CO2 equivalent (MTCO2E).

 See the full 2014 report

Of the totals, Montgomery County Community College contributed 37,390 pounds of recycling and averaged 4.658 pounds of recycling per person each week.

According to the U.S. EPA’s Waste Reduction Model (WARM), the College’s recycling efforts during last year’s competition resulted in a greenhouse gas reduction of 63 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (MTCO2E), which translates to the energy consumption of five households or the emissions of 12 cars.

RecycleMania is made possible through the sponsorship support of Alcoa, The Coca Cola Company and Keep America Beautiful. Additional program support is provided by the College and University Recycling Coalition (CURC), U.S. EPA Waste Wise program, Campus Conservation Nationals, and the National Wildlife Federation’s Campus Ecology program.

Check out the College’s Think Green blog for RecycleMania stats and updates.

To learn more about the RecycleMania 2015 competition, visit recyclemaniacs.org.

~ by Alana J. Mauger

Communities in Motion Honors MCCC, Others with Inaugural ‘Star Award’

by Alana J. Mauger

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Photo courtesy of GVF.

Montgomery County Community College was among 15 recipients of the first-ever Star Award from Communities in Motion, a Greater Valley Forge Transportation Management Association (GVF) foundation. The award recognizes projects, plans and people who demonstrate leadership in sustainability planning and implementation.

Specifically, Communities in Motion recognized MCCC for its leadership and advocacy as a charter signatory of the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment and for its sustainability work in the areas of transportation, waste minimization, energy and purchasing.

Associate Vice President for Facilities and Construction Jaime Garrido and Executive Director of Government Relations and Special Events Peggy Lee-Clark accepted the award on behalf of the College.

“Congratulations to our first ever Communities in Motion Stars recipients. We are honored to be able to recognize such wonderful organizations, individuals and local communities who are improving our communities of today so that they can be enjoyed now and well into the future. As Communities in Motion continues to grow and expand our programming, we are looking forward to continuing to work with our “stars” so that we can showcase their leadership and use their examples to continue to keep us all in motion.” said Rob Henry, CEO, Communities in Motion.

In addition to MCCC, other Communities in Motion Star Award recipients included the Borough of Phoenixville, Cheltenham Township, Chester County, Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, King of Prussia District, Macerich – Tysons Corner Center, Montgomery County, Philadelphia Premium Outlets, the Borough of Pottstown, Saving Hallowed Ground, SEPTA, Simon, URS Corporation, and Vanguard.

Submission categories included building; development; green infrastructure; leadership/advocacy; marketing and promotion of a project; park, recreation or open space project; physical improvements; and planning.

To learn more about Communities in Motion, visit movingyou.org.

Since signing the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment in 2007, Montgomery County Community College has put into place policies and procedures to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. As a result of its efforts, MCCC is a two-time recipient of Second Nature’s national Climate Leadership Award.