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There are 25 comments on BU Trustees Approve Aggressive Climate Action Plan

  1. Great news! Much work to be done, but a path forward. Thank you to the task force and kudos to Anthony Janetos for his leadership and hard work.

  2. Congratulations to the faculty and students on the committee for all of your work and attention to this matter. Thank you for standing up for us – and thanks to the board for approving this necessary plan.

    1. This is a fantastic story, even if the amount saved is exactly nothing. Climate change is important and fighting our negative impact is worth the investment – whether or not we gain monetarily in the long run.

    2. You can find all the financial details in the report, including projected savings for the first ten years. In addition, you can find detailed financial analysis for the energy efficiency projects, which constitute one of the most expensive pieces of the plan. Visit the website http://www.bu.edu/climateactionplan

      Marta Marello
      Climate Action Plan Project Manager

  3. There also needs to be re-education on sustainability. Often coming in early in the morning and on weekends, you can often see office lights left on. Sometimes you even see windows left open even in the summer and winter.

  4. Animal agriculture and the consumption of animal products contributes more to global warming and greenhouse emissions than the entire transportation sector. What will BU do to help educate its students and faculty about cutting their intake?

  5. I feel sorry for all the kids who could have had an education paid for but instead we will have solar panels when it gets dark at 4 and the sun angle is so low it doesnt register. But kudos for the bike lanes and the greening of the T as shown… the trees and grassy roofs are great.

    1. Your comment bothers me, and here’s why. While you are correct in saying that sun sets earlier, and the angle is lower than other parts of the world. I’d urge you to look at Germany and other northern European countries, who are in less ideal conditions than Boston yet produces a huge percentage of their electricity from not only renewable energy, but specifically solar.

      In fact, BU’s massive amount of rooftop real estate makes it one of the best places to install solar in the region.

      And as a ‘BUmom’, I get it, the burden of college is crazy, but it’s incredibly short sighted to only consider the capital cost of solar, and not it’s long term savings which will end up going right into the endowment for less fortunate students. Glad you can look out for the expensive bike lane they’re putting in though.

    2. Actually, the on campus solar panels you mention (if they go through) will be done through a PPA (power purchase agreement) by a 3rd party, where the university will not put out any of the capital cost, and it will actually lower the university’s electric bill. So no impact on financial aid for students.

      I’ve put solar panels on my house in the Boston area, and they are paid off in ~5 years and my electric bills are near zero. Solar is not a bad economic investment for institutions or homeowners.
      and significantly reduces our carbon emissions.

      1. For homeowners, the better deal is buying the solar panels like you did, and getting a more significant return on investment for the ~20 year expected lifespan of the solar equipment.

        I would hope that BU has looked into alternatives to a PPA (where the solar company reaps the greatest amount of benefits and savings.)

  6. This is excellent news! A very proud day for BU indeed. Kudos to the Board of Trustees and congratulations to the Climate Task Force and the sustainability@BU team for taking a bold step forward with this climate action plan.

  7. Interesting, no discussion on how long to get their return on investment. Wonder what all the faculty and students would do if they did away with all parking on campus? Think of how many new tenure track faculty could be hired or scholarships could be awarded for this money?

  8. Let’s not get over-excited or over-congratulatory here.
    1. Like most climate change “action plans,” this is far too little, too late.
    2. $141 million over 10 years is a laughably small investment for BU, which just raised $1.5 billion in their recent fundraiser. I bet the board of trustees will spend more 141m on their luxury retreats in the next 10 years.
    3. BU has flat-out refused to divest from fossil-fuel, because it has “fiduciary duties to its endowment” — never mind duties to the community and the environment.
    4. Don’t forget who’s running the show: Pres. Brown is on the board of Dupont, whose environmental and ethical record everyone is free to look up.

  9. Just a heads up BU, from a technical standpoint, putting small-scale wind turbines along Commonwealth Ave as depicted in this rendering is an awful idea and green roofs, at least in terms of energy consumption, are far more trouble than they’re worth.

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