History

Macalester has a long history of incorporating sustainability issues into operations and education. Students started a recycling program in the 1960s and Facilities Services started focusing on energy efficiency in the 1960s and 1970s. In 2008, Macalester for the first time hired a sustainability manager and established the Sustainability Office. By 2009, the college comprehensively set sustainability goals in the form of our Sustainability Plan. These actions were possible because of Macalester's deep history of environmental engagement.

Timeline

2012-13

  • Made commitment to Real Food Challenge
  • Installed electric vehicle charging station

2011-12

  • Signed “Commitment to Sustainable Practices of Higher Education Institutions on the Occasion of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development.
  • Received silver campus sustainability rating from STARS
  • Supported NiceRide Bicycle Hub
  • Built storm water gardens in Janet Wallace parking lot
  • Enacted on campus bottled water ban

2010–2011

Policy

  • First Sustainability Update report
  • Sustainability course definition adopted
  • Bottled water free policy developed

Education

  • Campus life includes sustainability in educational outcome goals

Operations

  • Sustainable Landscaping Master Plan developed

2009–2010

Policy

  • Develop Sustainability Plan

Education

  • Environmental studies senior seminar students focus on zero waste projects

Operations

  • Develop move out waste reduction program
  • Food waste to pig food program started
  • Energy recommissioning report for all main campus buildings

2008–2009

Staffing

  • Hire Sustainability Manager
  • Establish Sustainability Student Worker Network

Policy

  • Launch sustainability strategic planning process
  • Subsidized bus pass program
  • Develop and implement green cleaning policy
  • Create designated suppliers program

Education

  • Environmental studies class audits campus greenhouse gas emissions and recommends actions for climate action plan.

Operations

  • Markim Hall designed and built to LEED Platinum standard
  • “MacFreeSwap” starts to reduce waste

2000–2007

Policy

  • Sign Talloires Declaration (2000)
  • Sign American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (2007)
  • Master Plan includes sustainability (2005)
  • Join Worker's Rights Consortium (2001)

Education

  • Establish Environmental Studies Department (2004)
  • Open EcoHouse student residence (2007)
  • Establish Lealtad-Suzuki Center (2002)

Operations

  • Install wind turbine on campus (2003)
  • Plant native prairie on campus (2004)
  • Create new position for a sustainability student worker in Facilities Services & Purchasing (2005)
  • Install green roofs on two campus buildings (2006)
  • Create Clean Energy Revolving Fund (2006)
  • Create bike share program: MacBike (2006)

1967–2000

Education

  • Establish Katharine Ordway Natural History Study Area (1967) • Create Environmental Studies Program (1973) • Create Civic Engagement Center (1988)

Operations

  • Implement campus—wide recycling (1970s) • Undertake numerous campus energy efficiency projects (1960s and 1970s)