New GW President Issues Sustainability Report

GW President Thomas LeBlanc
GW President Thomas LeBlanc
January 06, 2019
In November 2018, new GW President Thomas J. LeBlanc issued a major GW Sustainability Progress Report. The report elucidates in great quantitative detail the progress GW has made recently in a variety of areas such as reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, water conservation, water diversion and sustainable investments. In addition, the report provides an overview of GW’s efforts to incorporate sustainability into its operations and management decisions, and explains the connection sustainability has to the academic mission of the University.
 
Students at Solar FarmIn his opening message in the report, President LeBlanc, a member of the School of Engineering and Applied Science faculty, states that “Since joining GW, I have been impressed by our community’s dedication to sustainability. It is shown clearly through the university’s priorities, and during the past decade, it has translated into tangible accomplishments: leading academic programs, award-winning green campuses and a significant investment in an innovative solar power partnership. GW will continue to play a leadership role in addressing global sustainability challenges during my presidency. I am committed to supporting our university’s approach to providing the knowledge, research, practical solutions and informed graduates that create a positive and sustainable future."
 
President LeBlanc goes on to say that “(w)e remain among a select group of universities that has pledged to fulfill the principles of the Paris Agreement on climate change as part of the We Are Still In coalition. We also have made a climate leadership commitment to design and manage our campuses, procurement and transportation options to ultimately become carbon neutral.” That commitment is reflected by the new online Graduate Certificate in Greenhouse Gas Management that has been put into place recently within the EEM program, as well as the series of face-to-face and online professional short courses that have been developed and implemented in the past year by the Environmental and Energy Management Institute (EEMI).
 
The EEMI is an important component of GW’s sustainability efforts, which extend to all parts of the University. In the Fall 2018 semester, the University’s Solar Institute was assigned to be a part of the EEMI by the University’s Provost, further extending the EEMI’s contributions to the University’s sustainability missions and activities. 
 
Green Roof
Meghan Chapple, GW’s Director of the GW Office of Sustainability; Biology Professor Tara Scully, Director of GW’s Sustainability Minor Program; and Elliott School Research Professor Robert Ortung, GW’s Sustainable Research Director, compiled the impressive report, a copy of which can be seen at the following link: GW Sustainability Progress Report 2018