Green Fund to Decrease Wesleyan’s Carbon Footprint

The Wesleyan Green Fund is a student-financed and student-managed fund for sustainability that will finance initiatives that decrease waste and increase visibility of environmentally responsible practices on campus.

The newly-established Wesleyan Green Fund Committee is supporting initiatives that move the university forward in sustainability and environmental stewardship.

On Dec. 3, the student-managed committee will finance projects that will decrease the carbon footprint of the university, decrease waste, increase Wesleyan’s use of energy from renewable resources, or increase visibility of environmentally responsible practices on campus.

The committee will select projects proposed by Wesleyan students, faculty and staff.

Through a $15 fee, collected voluntarily from students during the Fall 2010 semester, the committee raised about $40,000. These “green funds” will be applied to several sustainability-focused projects at Wesleyan that otherwise would not be possible. The Green Fund Committee already has granted funds for composting equipment on campus.

“We hope that the fund, over time, will benefit the entire Wesleyan community,” says Green Fund Committee member Josh Levine ’12. “It is likely that most projects will be completed within a year of being proposed so that students will be able to see the direct benefits from their donation.”

The idea for the Green Fund stemmed from Julia Michaels ’12 and Julia Jonas-Day ’12, who attended the 2009 Power Shift Conference in Washington D.C. Levine, the Wesleyan Student Assembly sustainability coordinator, teamed up with Michaels and Jonas-Day and proposed that Wesleyan have a Green Fund. The WSA and Board of Trustees approved the campaign prior to the Fall 2010 semester.

Green Fund committee members apply for their position. The 2010-11 group includes Levine, Sophie Ackoff ’11, Evan Weber ’13, Bingxin Wu ’13 and Delphine Starr ’14. Joyce Topshe, associate vice president for facilities, serves as the Green Fund staff advisor.

The Green Fund Committee will advise and assist applicants on early project planning and research. For more information or to submit an application, visit https://sites.google.com/a/wesleyan.edu/green-fund/.