Chevrolet searched for campuses working to reduce carbon emissions and has chosen to partner with the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point among other universities for a carbon reduction initiative.
UWSP has made the commitment to be carbon neutral by 2050.
Shelly Janowski, the sustainability program and policy analyst in the Office of Sustainability, said Chevrolet will give the university around $30,000 in exchange for carbon credits.
“A company that has a reduction in their carbon can go out and sell it to another company that is looking to reduce their emissions,” Janowski said. “There is a price for these carbon credits. Chevy is paying a premium dollar per ton of carbon credits. If we were to go out in that market, we wouldn’t be able to get as much.”
Janowski said Chevrolet’s goal is to reduce up to 8 million metric tons of carbon in hopes of helping the environment.
“That 30 to 35 thousand dollars that we get will go right back into an energy-saving or carbon reduction project,” Janowski said. “It will do something to drive us forward.”
There are many energy-efficient programs the money can be used for.
“We have sustainable buildings and maintenance policies that we follow,” Janowski said. “We have behavior change campaigns like energy competitions where we hope to drive energy consumption down.”
Alex Thomas, a junior waste management and biology major, thinks UWSP is a great fit for Chevrolet’s initiative.
“The green image has historically been strong here at Stevens Point, and a lot of our students across all disciplines care about sustainability,” Thomas said. “This partnership will help push this campus toward higher sustainability goals.”
Greg Diemer, the vice chancellor for business affairs, said UWSP deserves this partnership because the campus has reduced its carbon input by using natural gas instead of coal.
“There are many things that UWSP has done to reduce energy use, such as conversion of lighting to LED in new parking lots, low use of water in sinks and toilets and managing exhaust air flow during low occupation of rooms throughout the campus,” Diemer said.
The university has plans to implement more energy-efficient projects. The partnership will help UWSP become increasingly sustainable in the future.