Middlebury College, Middlebury, VT (2,400 students) The school that spawned the national Step It Up protests against global warming is all about energy — in both senses of the word. Students lobbied hard for the $11 million biomass plant now being built, which will be a big player in making Middlebury College carbon neutral by 2016. They’ve also convinced residence halls to lower their thermostats two degrees in the winter; exchanged more than 2,000 incandescent lightbulbs for energy-efficient ones; and worked with the college’s ski facility, the Snow Bowl, to offset its carbon dioxide emissions. Wood used in on-campus construction comes from sustainable, local forestry operations, and a ten-kilowatt wind turbine provides power to Middlebury’s recycling facility, which has helped divert more than 55 percent of the college’s waste since 1994.
For those high school juniors and seniors looking for a place to expand their minds, there is a new list of “green” colleges out, and thankfully one of them was from our home state of Vermont—Middlebury College. Middlebury College students, and some key professors like Bill McKibben (ever heard of him?), launched a little program called Step it Up! In any event, we present a little hometown pride below with an excerpt about Middlebury, but everyone should read the full article here  to find a green institution of higher learning near you!