Randy Udall, director of the Community Office for Resource Efficiency, presents the third in the lecture series "Energizing the Rockies: Energy Challenges in Global, National and Regional Perspectives." CORE works with government officials at the local, state and federal levels to promote forward-thinking energy and green building policy. Part of Notable Lectures & Performances series, Colorado College. Recorded February 27, 2007.
The awareness of sustainability issues has increased the demand for contemporary environmental, social, and economic solutions. The green building movement, with LEED as the primary assessment standard in the United States, is a major focus of urban sustainability and the built environment. The Catamount Center Dorm, an ~3,000 sq. ft. small environmental education dorm at the rural Catamount Mountain Campus, located in Woodland Park, Colorado, underwent a preliminary LEED evaluation during the early construction stage. This qualitative case study identifies three theoretical constructs that address contestable concepts and gaps within the literature, and may be beneficial for directing future study; they include 1) LEED can serve as an effective educational tool for students, building designers, and LEED accredited professionals 2) LEED impacts building design team dynamics, influencing individual roles, advocacy, and group conversations, 3) LEED provides narrow sustainability solutions within the greater scope of green building practices and should be weighted against the larger ambitions of a project.
Tourism is the number one industry in the world. In developing countries there is inherent exploitation of environments, cultures and economies through the tourism industry. Although shifting to a conventional and unsustainable tourism-based economy will often help develop a country, the negative externalities outweigh the economic gain. As the world is becoming ever-more aware of the need for sustainability, ecotourism is leading the way as the most sustainable travel choice. It is up to the tourist, the host, and world organizations like the International Ecotourism Society (TIES) to transform the travel industry and turn ecotourism into the main form of tourism.
The 2014 Colorado College State of Sustainability report benchmarks our campus’ performance across broad sustainability metrics and provides a road map for incremental improvement in the coming years. More importantly, it recommends specific strategies for a holistic systems approach to successful integration of educational, engagement, operational, and planning outcomes. This report utilizes the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment, and Rating System (STARS®) outline and assessment methods developed by the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) to address the integration of sustainability across campus and the community. A focus on the Priority Actions not only impacts sustainability across campus and makes us more applicable as an institution of higher education to the current generation, but it also maps ways to improve our overall STARS® score and standing as well as other ranking systems, such as the Princeton Review Guide to Green Colleges and Sierra Magazine’s Coolest School rankings. To this end, the 2014 Colorado College State of Sustainability report is fundamentally organized around the STARS® organizational outline. CC’s 2014 benchmark report can be found at: https://stars.aashe.org/institutions/colorado-college-co/report/
Annie Leonard, the author and host of the online film, "The Story of Stuff," presents a lecture on this expose of the hidden environmental and social costs of current systems of production and consumption. The film has generated more than seven million views in 200 countries and territories since its launch in December 2007. She has spent nearly two decades investigating and organizing on environmental health and justice issues. She is now working on a book version of the film, to be published in March 2010. Part of Notable Lectures & Performances series, Colorado College. Recorded December 3, 2009.
Subsistence communities depend on forest resources and common lands to provide the necessities for survival. However, Western-based economic ideologies are greatly compromising the ability of these communities to perpetuate their traditional existence. Neoclassical economic principles promote the exploitation of important resources for use in markets. Also, as economic development and modernization ensues, land-use conversion inevitably results in further struggles to obtain the resources upon which many rely. This thesis explores biogas as an example of how fusion of ecological economic principles and ecofeminist values can be implemented to encourage sustainable development. An analysis of Nepal’s energy use by sector, supply and demand dynamics of fuelwood, land-use conversion within the district of Chitwan and the associated social, economic, and environmental issues caused by inefficient biomass consumption shed light on where sustainability and appropriate development efforts should be focused. My paper concludes that traditional Nepalese cooking methods need to be addressed in the face of misguided development and population growth, and the socioeconomic benefits associated with conversion to biogas technology is a good solution.
This paper seeks to explore the complex interactions of stakeholders in Northern Thailand’s rural development and examines the local, village-level impacts of different development discourses in an attempt to find what within these agendas has proven successful to local communities. Most important in this analysis is the role of local knowledge, villager agendas, and cultural durability in light of these projects. Looking at a variety of case studies from a number of different stakeholders in the conversation I analyze the impacts, both positive and negative, of the current rural development paradigms. Primarily, this paper examines the impacts of agricultural and forest development in ethnic hill tribe villages throughout Thailand. Rural villages in Southeast Asia’s Golden Triangle, the area where Laos, Thailand and China converge, still heavily rely on agriculture for their own self-sufficiency and incomes (Bello et al. 1998), although, land transformation and ecological degradation has created land insecurity in many of these Northern regions (UHDP, personal communication, January 26, 2013). [Keywords: sustainable development, indigenous knowledge, Northern Thailand]
The Colorado College Sustainability Plan (CCSP) is designed as a web-based “living document” in three hierarchically-nested parts: Strategic Initiatives, Action Projects, and Implementation Plans. Strategic Initiatives are divided into six categories, including: Structure, Energy & Carbon Neutrality, Natural Resources, Buildings & Landscape, Education, Financing. This document includes the background, goals and lists of action items for each strategic initiative.