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William and Mary, UVA Announce 2030 Carbon Neutrality Goal

William and Mary and UVA logo
The College of William and Mary and the University of Virginia have announced a partnership to reach carbon neutrality on both campuses by the year 2030.  

VPM Intern Patrick Larsen

The College of William and Mary and the University of Virginia aim to collaborate on strategies to reduce carbon emissions rapidly.

The College of William and Mary and the University of Virginia have announced a partnership to reach carbon neutrality on both campuses by the year 2030.

Calandra Waters Lake, Director of Sustainability at William and Mary, said the goal is just as much about education as reducing greenhouse gases.

“The interaction between the campus community and the Climate Action Plan is really important to us,”  Waters Lake said.

The goal is ambitious, she added, but attainable with the use of renewable energy sources like solar.

Waters Lake says the school is looking at Power Purchase Agreements - basically a contract made between an electricity provider and an electricity purchaser  - that could see up to 60% of on-campus electricity coming from renewables.

They’re also planning to purchase off-campus carbon offsets to make up for any emissions they can’t reduce in the next ten years.

Waters Lake says that the partnership, which aims for carbon-neutrality two decades before the state of Virginia’s goal of 2050, sets a strong example for students.

William and Mary also announced plans for an Institute for Integrative Conservation, which school officials say will show sustainability’s importance in all fields of study.

A specific carbon-neutrality plan for the school will be released next fall.