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Sustainable Operations

From its roots as farmland and orchards, Hampshire College has a close connection to the land from which it rose. The Sustainable Operations transition reduces our environmental footprint and our costs, and manages our campus and our built environment as laboratory and classroom.

Through this transition, we will re-envision the layout of the campus, build sustainable new buildings, rebuild unsustainable old ones, and fully realize the potential of our farm.

Initiatives include:

The Campus Portal: On November 15, the board of trustees approved the Portal Committee's recommended site for the new Campus Portal. The building will be situated so that we eliminate the inner traffic circle and parking, creating a campus quad defined by the Portal, FPH, Cole, the library, and the RCC. This will shift the emphasis of the center of the campus from cars and busses to people. Hampshire plans to meet the Living Building Challenge, which creates a zero-net energy, and zero-waste building.

$1 Billion Dollar Green Challenge: In the fall of 2011, Hampshire College joined with 32 other leading institutions to launch the Billion Dollar Green Challenge. The goal is to invest a cumulative total of one billion dollars in self-managed green revolving funds that finance energy efficiency upgrades on campus.

Sustainability Revolving Fund (SURF): The Hampshire College SURF provides loans for campus improvement projects that benefit Hampshire’s sustainability by improving efficiency and conserving resources. The SURF exists to foster student, staff, and faculty involvement in increasing environmental, social, and fiscal sustainability at Hampshire College.

Climate Action Plan: Hampshire is part of the American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment, which requires us to develop a comprehensive plan for reducing emissions. Last fall, President Lash asked the campus environmental committee to work with Hampshire Alumnus David Adamian 84F and his firm Greener U to develop a plan. They have developed a clear and concrete set of proposed actions to make the campus climate neutral by 2022 and involve students extensively in the process to use the greening of our buildings and operations as a learning opportunity.

Rehamping the Barn: In fall 2011, President Jonathan Lash charged the Rehamping student group with facilitating a process by which a decision could be made regarding how the horse barn on the President's property could be repurposed on the Hampshire campus. An open call for proposals brought 13 parties to describe spatial needs they saw on campus. In spring 2012, Professor Caryn Brause and her Rehamping the Barn class took on the next stage of the project; the rehamping project continues today.

Greening the Robert Crowne Center: The Robert Crown Center is a central part of Hampshire’s commitment to environmental sustainability. Upgrades to the center will include a photovoltaic and solar thermal array, insulation measures that reduce energy loss, and system-wide mechanical and electrical improvements with a goal of achieving LEED certification.

Hitchcock Center for Environment Nonbinding Memorandum:The governing boards of Hampshire College and the Hitchcock Center for the Environment recently signed a nonbinding memorandum of understanding to explore possible sites for the Center to build a state-of-the-art environmental education center on campus.

Solar Canopy: A new solar canopy installed at Hampshire will help the College further reduce our carbon footprint. The 36 kW array consists of 2,880 square feet of photovoltaic modules. It is assembled atop an existing support structure at the center of Hampshire’s Chuck and Polly Longsworth Arts Center.

Zipcars at Hampshire: Hampshire College has launched a new partnership with Zipcar Inc., providing the campus with access to the world’s leading car-sharing service. The cost-effective and convenient transportation option is now available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to all students, faculty, and staff members, ages 18 and older, and to community members over the age of 21.

Other initiatives include:


From research into nonpolluting transportation and new methods of organic farming to the campus-wide recycling program, being environmentally active has always been essential.




community garden


Hampshire College Climate Action Plan
converting lawns into meadowlands
Eco-friendly Office Tips

Daily habits can reduce our impact on the environment.


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