Campus Sells Carbon Units to Fund Further Sustainability Efforts

As part of its ongoing dedication to reducing its environmental footprint, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has sold more than 37,000 Verified Carbon Units (VCUs) from 2017 as part of its continued participation in Second Nature’s Carbon Credit and Purchasing Program (C2P2). Proceeds from this sale exceed $236,000.

Second Nature is a Boston-based nonprofit, and money raised through C2P2 has provided the spark for a number of major campus sustainability initiatives. The single largest investment to date was a contribution of $750,000 to help increase the campus Revolving Loan Fund (RLF), an internal funding source for utility conservation projects with payback periods of less than 10 years. The RLF has gone on to provide crucial financing for efforts ranging from major LED retrofits and retrocommissioning projects to supporting a new biomass boiler at the Energy Farm.

Other activities financed through these sales of carbon credits include the Certified Green Office Program, which has enrolled more than 50 offices and hundreds of staff in effecting change at a departmental level, and the Campus Tree Inventory, which makes a significant impact in the University’s commitment to maintaining and expanding a healthy tree population as a three-time Tree Campus USA designee.

“Continued participation in the C2P2 program has been a major win for our ability to pursue new and cutting-edge methods to reduce our environmental impact,” said Ximing Cai, iSEE’s Associate Director for Campus Sustainability. “Through the sale of Verified Carbon Units, we’re able to reinvest our current energy savings into programs that may not have happened otherwise. Resources for sustainability initiatives can sometimes be scarce, and having dedicated funding through this program is vital to our continued success as a campus.”

For more information about past carbon credit sales, please visit iSEE’s campus sustainability funding page.