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2019 AASHE Conference & Expo: What a Circular Economy for Universities Should Look Like
October 27, 2019 at 8:00 am - 5:00 pm UTC-5
The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education’s (AASHE’s) annual conference is the largest stage in North America to exchange effective models, policies, research, collaborations and transformative actions that advance sustainability in higher education and surrounding communities. The annual conference will take place on October 27-30 in Spokane, Washington.
Workshop Overview: Defining the Finish Line – What a Circular Economy for Universities Should Look Like
Over the last few decades, we recognize the dire threat of climate change and created an agreed upon understanding of the risks buildings pose to student learning, health and performance. We have green rating systems for the building, for the interiors, for the wellness of the occupants, and for the materials themselves. We even have a list of 17 Sustainable Development Goals established by the United Nations for all countries to follow, and yet, the majority of buildings are still harmful to the environment and human health, and most campuses have no pathway to carbon neutrality, all while carbon levels keep increasing, now over 410 parts per million.
In the next decade, more than 5,000 universities and colleges around the country will have to do something that has eluded humanity for 150 years: reduce their carbon emissions. But at our rate of urbanization, we’re building the equivalent of a city the size of New York every five weeks, and student enrollment will hit an all-time high by 2030.
One can’t win a game if you don’t know what winning looks like. In this talk, we’ll explore the innovation landscape in our built environment, and share all of the disconnected, emerging trends going on. Using this, we’ll work with the audience in a collective impact discussion of how to stack these trends and define what winning in the circular economy should look like. When it’s presented, the circular economy “roadmap” should be something extracted from nature and represented/illustrated accordingly.
Using this collective roadmap, we’ll show the audience how to set specific objectives, goals and targets to reach this new finish line.
This half-day workshop will be co-presented by Eric Corey Freed on October 27, from 8:30 am to 12 pm.