Harvard and Mayor Walsh’s Carbon Cup challenge

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Reflecting its decades-long commitment to confronting climate change, Harvard University was one of four inaugural members of Boston Mayor Martin Walsh’s Carbon Cup, which launched Saturday, May 31, 2014. By opting into the challenge Harvard, Boston University, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Brigham & Women’s Hospital have collectively agreed to commit roughly 15 million square feet to the cup with the hopes of removing approximately 35,000 metric tons of GHC from a 2005 baseline, equivalent to weathering close to 27,000 housing units.

From creating new materials that revolutionize solar energy production, to probing the human influences on climate change and providing analysis to policymakers, Harvard faculty and students are playing key roles in the transition to renewable energy sources and a more sustainable future.

In addition to its research and teaching in this area, Harvard is committed to modeling an institutional pathway toward a more sustainable future. In 2008, President Faust and the deans approved a goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 30% by 2016, including growth, from a 2006 baseline. From fiscal year 2006 to fiscal year 2013 University-wide emissions have dropped 21% including growth and renovation and 31% when growth is excluded.