Campus Sustainability News

News on campus sustainability initiatives, emerging programs, rankings, awards, student initiatives, green teams, and more from across the Cornell University campus.

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Students carrying pots in a greenhouse at Cornell, wearing masks during COVID19

 Cornell University celebrates all things sustainability during the entire month of April.  This year, join a new Green Room Certification pilot, become a Residential Composter, attend a virtual student sustainability leadership conference, and more.

Students hanging out in dorm room

The Residential Sustainability Leaders are launching a Green Room Certification pilot this Spring. Help us test the certification - and make your living space more sustainable - by being one of the first to sign up. 

2021 Golden Gorge Awards

Submit a nomination and mark your calendars for the 4th annual Golden Gorge Awards, celebrating the achievements, ideas, and innovations of Cornell University's student sustainability leaders and organizations.  


Now through Earth Day purchase a reusable takeout container and utensil set for just $5 at one of eight Cornell Dining locations.

Residential Composters Logo

Become a certified Residential Composter and turn your personal food waste into a reusable product using drop-off locations on campus.  Open to all students and staff living in on-campus housing.   

a view of Beebe Lake on a sunny day

The 2021 Climate Change Series provides a range of perspectives on the science of climate change and its implications for agriculture, ecosystems, and food systems and offers significant economic, ethical, and policy insights. “This seminar series brings in the brightest minds from across the world in different disciplines to understand the difficulty and complexity of climate change and the innovations already in progress to solve this problem," says Professor Peter Hess, who leads the seminars.

corals underwater

Intro to Oceanography is one of the largest and most popular classes at Cornell University, with almost 1,100 students each semester. Taught by Bruce Monger, senior lecturer in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, the era of COVID-19 and remote teaching presented Monger with an enormous challenge: How would he make his spirited lectures — peppered with climate activism and inspirational calls-to-action — as dynamic in a remote setting? Last summer, he reached out to Kathryn J. Boor, the Ronald P. Lynch Dean of CALS at the time, requesting funds to build his own in-home production studio to record lectures for Intro to Oceanography. Boor passed the request to Cornell’s senior leadership, where a new idea was born — to record the lectures with the professional support of eCornell, and in tandem, develop a publicly accessible oceanography and climate sustainability course, made available through eCornell’s online certificate programs.

Students hanging out

The Campus Sustainability Office is hiring a graduate or highly qualified undergraduate student to become our AASHE Sustainability Tracking, Assessment, and Rating System (STARS) Student Coordinator.  Paid position can be completed remotely during COVID19 conditions and begins late Spring '21 or Summer '21, with the possibility to extend through the following school year.  Cornell is the only Ivy to earn a  STARS Platinum rating for our campus' sustainability performance. Help us maintain it.


Each year, millions of disposable paper and styrofoam containers end up in landfills after just one use. As part of Cornell Dining's Sustainability Action Plan, we're taking steps to reduce the use of single-use disposable containers, especially as takeout meals have become a vital part of staying safe this year.

Two students in a lab

If the cloth face covering can achieve levels of the FDA-approved face mask, the reusable cloth masks can replace the demand for disposable medical face masks for nonhealthcare professionals and provide accessible, affordable options to the public.