Green strategies at College of the Atlantic include renewable energy generation, such as these so...Green strategies at College of the Atlantic include renewable energy generation, such as these solar panels at the school’s Peggy Rockefeller Farm.

Colby College in Waterville snagged the No. 2 spot, up from No. 15 last year.

The annual guide is an online resource published since 2010 for college applicants wanting to attend schools that foster a culture of environmental responsibility.

Based primarily on surveys and analyses at 683 colleges in 2022–23, the list includes 522 schools selected for programs, policies and practices related to sustainability and the environment.

Human ecology

College of the Atlantic was cited for distinctions including its exclusive focus on the field of human ecology.

The college defines human ecology as “the study of the relationships between humans and their natural, cultural, built, and technological environments.”

The school became the first carbon-neutral college in the U.S. in 2007, and has committed to becoming fossil fuel-free by 2030. College of the Atlantic also placed No. 1 in the Princeton Review’s “Green Matters: Everyone Cares About Conservation,” a student survey that rates administration and student support for environmental awareness and conservation efforts.

Actions to reduce its footprint as part of a long-term strategy include construction underway of a 12,000-square-foot dormitory designed to passive house principles, featuring airtight construction, a high-efficiency envelope, heat-recovery ventilation, mass-timber construction, wood-fiber insulation and a rooftop solar array.

Read more…