The Borough of Manhattan Community College is aware of the critical role it plays in the region’s ecology and is committed to integrating sustainability into the design and management of its physical campus operations. However, to exercise genuine leadership in this arena, BMCC realizes it must also weave sustainability awareness into the fabric of college life by integrating it into its core activities of teaching, research, and outreach. BMCC’s efforts are aimed at dramatically increasing the capacities of the communities we serve (local, regional, and global) to understand and address the challenges and opportunities of sustainability. Reducing our carbon footprint is a valid goal, however BMCC’s greatest impact on sustainability will be to inspire a new generation of responsible global citizens.
Over the last five years, BMCC has undertaken numerous efforts aimed at reducing its carbon footprint, they include; an environmental audit by outside consultants, material investments in green-enhanced infrastructure, sponsored green workforce training initiatives and will soon be home to the largest array of solar powered energy in the city. In support of these activities, a college-wide committee on sustainability was convened to help promote sound ecological practices among departments, educate students about sustainability issues, encourage faculty to integrate sustainability into curriculum, and serve as a practical outline for identifying and integrating these activities in a comprehensive strategy that is aligned with the college’s master plan. The Committee has created a multi-year, updateable sustainability plan, which tracks and benchmarks the implementation of the environmental initiatives undertaken by the college. The plan links activities to existing college goals so justifications for sustainability efforts are clearly defined. The Plan incorporates opportunities for BMCC to engage the local community in promoting sustainable activities which extend beyond its immediate surroundings. In addition, the plan defines the responsibilities, timelines and resource allocations required in making BMCC a “green campus”.