Electricity Emissions Offset at College of the Atlantic
College of the Atlantic (COA) in Bar Harbor, Maine has one major: human ecology. This academic commitment is reflected in its practices. On Earth Day, April 22, 2004, for example, COA President, Steven Katona, signed a contract to purchase green tags from Native Energy and the Rosebud Sioux Tribe’s St. Francis Wind Farm to offset 100 percent of the greenhouse gases associated with the generation of electrical energy for the COA campus. On the same day, Dr. Katona signed a letter of agreement with the Reddington Mountain Wind Farm LLC to purchase 100 percent of the electrical energy needs for the COA campus and Beech Hill Organic Farm (an anticipated 1,040.08 MWh for 20 years) when that new facility comes on line. COA may be the first campus in the country to make a multi-year commitment to becoming entirely powered by safe, clean and renewable energy. Organizers note that researching the green tag and other renewable energy options took longer than expected, and that while much of the community was supportive, they did have to confront a small, but vocal opposition from people concerned about the aesthetics of wind turbines on ridge lines and bird populations. College of the Atlantic was one of a handful of colleges and universities in the US to receive Campus Recognition from the National Wildlife Federation in 2004 and their project is described in detail in the 2003-2004 edition of NWF’s Campus Ecology Yearbook.