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Report Card 2010

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Hamilton College
College Sustainability Report Card 2010

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Hamilton College

School details:

  Campus Sustainability Leader


Endowment: $670 million as of June 30, 2008

Location: Clinton, New York

Enrollment: 1,831

Type: Private


Campus Survey: Yes (see response)

Dining Survey: Yes (see response)

Endowment Survey: Yes (see response)

Student Survey: Yes (see response)


Data compiled from independent research. For information on data collection and evaluation, please see the Methods section.

Overall grade  
B -
The Office of Environmental Safety, Protection, and Sustainability employs a full-time director. The Hamilton Green Team, which includes faculty, staff, and students, is actively working on plans to reduce the college’s carbon footprint. The college only purchases Energy Star appliances and Green Seal-certified cleaning supplies.
Hamilton achieved a 6 percent reduction in carbon emissions during the 2007-2008 academic year. The college has committed to reduce emissions 50 percent from 2007 levels by 2030 and aims to be climate neutral by 2050. On-campus solar photovoltaic panels and wind turbines provide a percentage of the college's electricity. A geothermal system has been installed in one residence hall, and a building under renovation will feature geothermal heating and cooling. A variety of HVAC and lighting control upgrades are in progress.
Hamilton's food service provider spends 20 percent of the annual food budget on local items, including hormone- and antibiotic-free dairy products. The college buys exclusively cage-free eggs and hormone- and antibiotic-free poultry. All seafood is purchased in accordance with sustainability guidelines. Students that use a reusable cup 20 times receive five dollars in their Dining Dollars account. Vegan options are available at every meal.
All new construction projects at Hamilton are built to LEED standards, and the recently renovated Kirner-Johnson building is registered for LEED certification. Low-flow showerheads have been installed in all residence halls, as well as in locker rooms in the athletic gym.
Students living in the Woolcott House manage a community garden and are interested in activities related to sustainability. The Hamilton Environmental Action Group (HEAG) works to raise awareness about environmental issues, advocates for the use of local foods on campus, and hosts a farmers and artisans market on campus once per semester. In 2009, electrical use decreased by 17 percent during HEAG's annual Dorm Energy Battle.
The college operates a shuttle to transport students to area venues and partners with a car-sharing program. The Bicycle Guild maintains a free bike-sharing program, and the bicycle co-op offers maintenance services. Hamilton's physical plant is currently testing an electric truck for use in its operations.
The college makes a list of all endowment holdings available to all members of the school community, including faculty, staff, students, and alumni. Information is available upon request. The college does not make its shareholder voting record public.
The college aims to optimize investment return and is exploring, but not currently invested in, renewable energy funds or similar investment vehicles.
The college asks that its investment managers handle the details of proxy voting.
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