Sierra magazine has named top 100 greenest schools in America. The ‘coolest school’, which received 88.6 points out of a potential 100, is Green Mountain College in Poultney, Vermont.
Coming in at a close second was Dickinson College, Pennsylvania, with 86.1 points, and rounding out the top three is Evergreen State College, Washington, with 85.9 points.
The ranking was conducted by questionnaire, with schools across the country asked to share details of their green initiatives and sustainable efforts. Categories included efficiency; energy supply; food; academics; purchasing; transportation; waste management; administration; and financial investments.
Green Mountain College secured the top spot with the use of a creative power and heating source – cow power – with biomass and biogas are as sustainable fuels on the campus. By next year, the school plans to be completely carbon-neutral. Other schools implemented practices such as incentives for alternative transportation, composting toilets, maintaining a high efficiency energy plant, even a sustainable-business curriculum.
Colleges and universities aren’t the only educational institutions going green. IC BUS, in Warrenville, Illinois, also held a competition to find out which school is ‘America’s Greenest School’. Students, teachers, classrooms, and entire schools, from kindergarten to twelfth grade, were eligible to enter the contest. Ten finalists were chosen, and then it was up to America to decide the winner with online voting. Nearly 1,600 students participated nationwide and it all came down to Ms. Roberts’ 3rd and 4th grade classes at South Shore Charter Public School in Norwell, MA. To view their entry, please visit the America’s Greenest School website.
Congratulations to all the winners, to the schools that contributed and each of the participants. Though of course with these types of initiatives, everyone wins – and so does the planet.