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UC Wins California Environmental Leadership Award

June 10, 2010

June 10, 2010

Global Green USA is honoring the University of California for
the environmental commitment the university has demonstrated
through its academic, research and sustainability practices.

The California Environmental Leadership Award recognizes the UC
system for its 32

green-certified buildings, more than any other university
in the country, and its leadership in research and educational
programs focused on climate change, clean energy and other
sustainability issues.

UC President Mark Yudof said winning the award is a “tremendous
honor” that recognizes students, faculty and researchers who are
transforming the University of California into a national leader
for sustainable development.

“We view the university as a living laboratory,” Yudof said.
“Not only are we generating the research into sustainable ways of
living, we are finding culture-shaping ways to apply it.”

Yudof is accepting the award on behalf of UC at
Global Green’s annual
Millennium Awards ceremony on Saturday (June 12) in Santa Monica at
the Fairmont Miramar Hotel.

Global Green advocates for smart solutions to climate change. It
is the American arm of
Green Cross International, an
organization former Soviet Union President Mikhail Gorbachev
founded to foster a global value shift toward a sustainable and
secure future.

“Inspired by their students, the UC system has demonstrated
increasing leadership on climate change — as one
manifestation of that growing commitment, the UC campuses have more
certified green buildings than any other university in the
country,” said Global Green President Matt Petersen. “Constructing
a green building is not enough — thankfully, the UC system
has supported sustainability practices and academic initiatives on
climate change and clean technology at each and every campus,
becoming a significant part of student life, campus operations and
extracurricular offerings.”

UC’s systemwide

sustainability policy
includes mandates on energy efficiency,
use of renewable resources, recycling, waste reduction,
environmentally friendly construction methods and campus
foodservice guidelines.

UC is a leader in the sustainability movement in higher
education. Along with its LEED buildings, UC is at the forefront of
green practices such as using clean energy sources, cutting carbon
emissions, trayless dining halls and composting programs that
divert waste from landfills. UC campuses are routinely in the top
of green university rankings by organizations such as the Sierra
Club and Princeton Review.

Research in areas such as developing biofuel made from algae,
super energy-efficient LED lighting, next generation solar cells
and other solutions that can mitigate climate change is being
conducted on all UC campuses. Hundreds of classes and academic
programs at UC are training the next generation of sustainability experts.

This is the 14th year for the Millennium Awards, which
acknowledge people and organizations that exemplify Gorbachev’s
call to reconnect humanity to the environment. The awards ceremony
raises funds to support the Global Green’s initiatives to rebuild a
green New Orleans, to create green affordable housing and green
schools across the country and to advocate for policy initiatives
to combat climate change.

Actors Leonardo DiCaprio and Salma Hayek are among the co-chairs
of the 2010 Millennium Awards, and DiCaprio is also a member of the
Global Green board of directors.

Other Millennium Award honorees are:

  • Filmmaker James Cameron and Suzy Amis Cameron, who will receive
    the Entertainment Industry Environmental Leadership Award.
  • The Environmental Protection Agency, which will receive the
    International Environmental Leadership Award marking its 40th
    anniversary as a federal agency.
  • The W Hollywood Hotel & Residences, which will receive the
    Green Building Environmental Leadership Award for opening the first
    LEED certified hotel in Los Angeles.
  • Matt Petersen, president and CEO of Global Green USA, who is
    receiving the Founders Award for his 15 years of service.