Some of New York’s colleges and universities have been quietly making every day Earth Day with a series of efforts to boost sustainability and conservation. From adding green roofs to their buildings to installing new wastewater management systems, many of the city’s most notable educational institutions have been on board in doing their part to help reduce greenhouse gases by 2017 as part of Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC. Read on to see how these schools are leading the charge to make New York a greener, cleaner place.

Continue reading below
Our Featured Videos
CUNY Sustainability Project, Sustainable Energy projects, CUNY SustainableWorks, city university of new york, cornell university, cornell university tech campus, columbia university, green roofs, wastewater, stormwater, sustainable college, hudson river, lehman college, rooftop greenhouse, greenhouse, greenhouse gas, planyc, net-zero campus,
Lehman College Science Building Rendering

The news of Cornell University’s coming Tech Campus, set to break ground in 2014, sent many of us into a frenzy in anticipation of how the net-zero campus will revolutionize sustainable development and projects in the region for years to come. The campus, which will cost $2 billion to build and operate over the next 30 years, will harvest geothermal energy, serve as a hub for corporate research and development and feature a canopy of solar cells.

Quickly trekking behind is the City University of New York (CUNY) who has implemented key initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across their 23 schools  — a goal they will reach through the CUNY Sustainability Project, citywide Sustainable Energy projects, and the CUNY SustainableWorks for sustainable and clean technology. Lehman College, a CUNY school, recently opened its 69,000-square-foot, $7 million building, boasts a rooftop greenhouse, a storm and greywater waste management system and is expected to qualify for LEED Gold certification.

Columbia University’s installation of seven green roofs across its campuses paved the way in reducing greenhouse gas emissions by installing a series of seven green roofs and boasts plans to install more. According to AMNY, the university plans to extend their green roof program at their Manhattanville campus by developing park space along the Hudson River between 129th and 133rd streets.