Sign on the Green Line: The New School’s Sustainability Pledge

Reusing water bottles at one of The New School's refilling station is a great way to stay green

Congratulations, New Schooler: as a New Yorker, you are one of the greenest people in the United States. Simply by living, studying, and working in New York City, you use less energy, share more resources, and produce less waste than nearly any other population in the country. On top of that, your university is particularly committed to sustainability, boasting recent improvements like the installation of smarter boilers, low-flow and waterless plumbing fixtures, and heat-reflecting white roofs.

So a pat on the back to a job well done. But your work isn’t over. Continuing this positive momentum requires more than just making changes to the univeristy’s infrastructure. To make a real difference, every individual has to make an extra effort to contribute. That’s why the Office of Sustainability and Energy Management is calling on students, faculty, and staff to commit to The New School Sustainability Pledge.

Split into categories of Energy and Greenhouse Gasses, Waste/Pollution, Food, Water, and Advocacy, the pledge is comprised of 28 simple actions individuals can take to reduce their environmental footprint. Signatories promise to make small changes, like switching to compact fluorescent bulbs, choosing local produce, and drinking tap instead of bottled water.

“The pledge is the first step in the behavior change needed to reduce the university’s carbon emissions,, says Gwen Klivert, assistant director of Sustainability and Energy Management, who spearheaded the pledge’s development. It is a public and collective statement that recognizes the role we play in energy, water, and waste reduction on campus.”

The Office of Sustainability and Energy Management aims to have 1,000 community members take the pledge by Earth Day, April 21, 2011. Take the pledge now and help make The New School the greenest university in the capitol of sustainability. Go to newschool.edu/sustainability/pledge.