Sustainability Staff
Sustainability Staff at the “Running Out of Steam” event to celebrate shutting off steam on the east side of campus as part of the Utility Master Plan- for good!


Environmental Advisory Committee

The Environmental Advisory Committee (EAC) is the governing body of environmental action at Carleton. Its role is to advise the Vice President and Treasurer of the college, as well as engage and support student sustainability projects. It is composed of three faculty, three staff and four student members (three students-at-large, one senator liaison). The EAC meets bi-weekly in the facilities conference room. Meetings are open to the public, and are a great way to stay informed on the environmental decisions being made at Carleton.

For more information, visit the Environmental Advisory Committee’s website.

Sustainability Office

The Sustainability Office was founded in 2010 to oversee the creation of the 2011 Climate Action Plan and its various action items and initiatives. The Manager of Campus Energy and Sustainability Program Coordinator work with student Sustainability Assistants in the areas of food, waste, energy, transportation, events & outreach, and environmental justice.

To contact the Sustainability Office, email

Sustainability Office Staff & Students

Center for Community & Civic Engagement Environmental Systems Cohort

The Center for Community & Civic Engagement offers a wide array of opportunities for students to deepen their learning, broaden their knowledge, and create reciprocal partnerships by engaging with local, national, and global communities. The CCCE encourages students to pursue their passions by participating in co-curricular programs, academic civic engagement courses, and paid student work positions. Some programs specific to sustainability include:

Environmental Carls Organized (ECO)

ECO is a student organization dedicated to promoting environmental awareness and activism at Carleton and in the greater Northfield community. Every week we meet Wednesday night at 8pm in Sayles 253 for discussion and action while working towards our goal of helping to increase environmental stewardship and sustainability in the world around us.

Divest Carleton

Divest Carleton aims to change the way the public, governments, and investors view fossil fuel companies in order to create a political atmosphere where large-scale climate action is possible. In an effort to achieve this, Divest Carleton calls upon Carleton College to remove its direct holdings in the top 200 fossil fuel companies. Continuing to hold fossil fuel stocks is a tacit statement of support for the industry’s extractive practices, political agenda, and egregious misinformation campaigns. Divest Carleton works to change public sentiment about the fossil fuel industry and to bring attention to the disproportionate impact that climate change has on marginalized communities. By joining the 60 educational institutions that have committed to fossil fuel divestment, Carleton can work to uphold its institutional values and become a true leader in the transition towards a sustainable future.

Carleton Association of Nature and Outdoor Enthusiasts (CANOE)

The Carleton Association of Nature and Outdoor Enthusiasts (CANOE) is a group of students who love the outdoors and want to share that experience with other students. We are one of the largest student organizations on campus, with hundreds of students going on trips every year.


Utility Master Plan

The last time Carleton College made a major shift in its campus utilities was over 100 years ago with the construction of the central plant in 1910. Before that, each individual building was heated by a coal furnace or fireplaces. Now the college is embarking on its utility plan for the next 100 years.

Our two wind turbines (installed in 2004 and 2011) have been a big help to our sustainability efforts, but we need to do more to reduce carbon emissions. Our Utility Master Plan furthers the concepts outlined in our 2011 Climate Action Plan which is the guiding document supporting our goal of making Carleton’s campus carbon free by the year 2050. Our new utility system will utilize four forms of renewable energy – wind, solar photovoltaic, solar thermal, and geothermal – and is flexible enough to take advantage of future advancements in renewable energy technologies.

When all phases of the Utility Master Plan are complete, Carleton’s plant emissions will be reduced by over 35 percent.

For more information about the Utility Master Plan, explore this website and watch this webinar from Martha Larson, the project manager for the UMP. 

Climate Action plan

Carleton’s Climate Action Plan (CAP) was approved by the Board of Trustees in 2011. The CAP has a goal of becoming a carbon-free campus by the year 2050, with a variety of action items and initiatives to help achieve that goal.

Circulation Plan

A committee of faculty, staff, and students worked hard over the 2019-2020 academic year to develop a draft plan for campus circulation (traffic flow for bikes, cars, and pedestrians, parking and deliveries, and accessibility). View the entire plan.

Black Lives Matter Statement

Over the past few years, the Sustainability Office has been working on environmental justice issues. In the wake of George Floyd’s murder in Minneapolis in the summer of 2020, we realized we needed to do more and pivot our work. We continue to learn and advocate for our community. See our message of solidarity.