On November 19th, 2015, the White House launched The American Campuses Act on Climate (ACAC) initiative to amplify the voice of the higher-education community in support of a strong international climate agreement in the United Nations COP21 climate negotiations in Paris. University President Mark B. Rosenberg and Age of Aquarius Vice President, student Salome Garcia attended a White House roundtable with dozens of other campus and business leaders, to highlight best practices to promote sustainability and address climate change on college campuses.

American Campus Act on Climate Pledge

As of December 10, 2015, 318 colleges and universities representing over 4 million students have demonstrated their commitment by joining the American Campuses Act on Climate Pledge.

As part of the event, President Rosenberg issued a six-part pledge to promote low-carbon practices and operations throughout the university including:

  • Build on the FIU Sea Level Solutions Center research and activities that integrate low carbon adaptation into regional climate resiliency plans.
  • Build on its UniversityCity Prosperity Project, as a collaborative effort with Florida department of Transportation, Miami-Dade Expressway Authority, Miami-Dade Transit, City of Sweetwater and other, to reinvent multimodal transportation, reduce emissions, and other low-carbon solutions.
  • Propose a green revolving fund for campus infrastructure or activities that reduce emissions.
  • Commit to an increase of 15 points in the university STARS rating by May 2016, target a gold rating by 2017 and platinum rating by 2020.
  • Begin submitting the university’s STARS report annually.
  • Explore feasibility of expanding on-campus composting of dining facility food waste by bringing new industrial composter to FIU.

The pledge reads:

As institutions of higher education, we applaud the progress already made to promote clean energy and climate action as we seek a comprehensive, ambitious agreement at the upcoming United Nations Climate Negotiations in Paris. We recognize the urgent need to act now to avoid irreversible costs to our global community’s economic prosperity and public health and are optimistic that world leaders will reach an agreement to secure a transition to a low carbon future. Today our school pledges to accelerate the transition to low-carbon energy while enhancing sustainable and resilient practices across our campus.

Read the White House Press Release for more information on the American Campuses Act on Climate Pledge and view a FIU News article about President Rosenberg and Salome’s visit.