Pace Accepts Bloomberg Challenge, Announces First Climate Change Track in Environmental Law Masters

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Cara Halstead Cea, 914-906-9680, chalstead@pace.eduGreen university gets three ways greener


NEW YORK, NY, October 23, 2008 – Pace University today accepted Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s Challenge for reducing its emissions of greenhouse gasses by 30 percent in the next ten years. At the same time, the University, which is widely recognized for its environmental activities, announced that it has joined the Climate Initiative of former President Bill Clinton, and that it is launching the nation’s first climate change track in a Masters of Environmental Law curriculum.

“As a university known as a national leader in environmental research, policy advocacy and environmental law, we at Pace are committed to being a 2030 Challenge Partner,” said Pace president Stephen J. Friedman. “We thank Mayor Bloomberg for giving us the opportunity to participate in this aggressive plan for reducing carbon emissions, providing us concrete goals on which to focus existing sustainability initiatives.”

Pace’s Challenge commitment spans all campuses of the university, including its New York City campuses downtown and in midtown as well as those in Westchester – White Plains, Pleasantville and Briarcliff.

Friedman added: “Institutions of higher education have a responsibility to lead on challenging issues like climate change.”

Clinton Initiative. Pace’s environmental activity will be further enhanced through its participation in the Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI). This program helps implement large scale energy saving building retrofits, in part through relationships with private sector energy service companies, manufacturers, and financial institutions. CCI projects help lower project costs while lowering energy bills and achieving greenhouse gas reductions, and without using capital budgets or increasing operating expenses. CCI leverages the buying potential of organizations to achieve favorable pricing on energy-efficient and clean energy products and technologies.

Climate change law degree. The announcement of the nation’s first Masters of Environmental Law (LLM) with a concentrated track focused on climate change law came from the Pace Law School, in White Plains, which will launch the new track in the spring semester of 2009. For many years, the school’s environmental law program has been consistently ranked among the nation’s top three. The new concentration will provide students the opportunity to focus their studies on cutting-edge climate topics, including eco-markets and trading, climate and insurance, disaster management, and coastal adaptive management. The climate change concentration complements innovative work being done at the Law School’s Energy & Climate Center, formerly the Pace Energy Project. The Center has a 21-year history of training sustainable energy advocates and is known for expertise in the social and environmental costs and benefits of electricity and fuel production alternatives, including their impact on climate change. As a member of New York City’s Energy Policy Task Force, the Center will be actively working with municipal officials to tackle the Mayor’s Challenge.

Accelerated deadline. The Bloomberg challenge commitment to reductions by the year 2018 is 12 years more aggressive than the goal of New York City’s “PlaNYC,” a set of recommendations announced in April 2007. That document calls for reducing citywide greenhouse gas emissions 30 percent by 2030.

“We are indeed excited to participate in the Mayoral Challenge,” said William McGrath, Senior Vice President for Administration at Pace. “We look forward to sharing project ideas and energy management best practices with our colleagues at other universities and institutions through the seminars and programs.”

Pace will begin addressing the goals in the Challenge by taking an inventory of greenhouse gas emissions and then will implement additional projects to improve energy efficiency and reduce emissions. These projects will complement existing initiatives that have come about in part due to a longstanding consciousness of environmental issues and the efforts of a university-wide sustainability committee that has been at work since August.

Recent greening. In the last few years, Pace has concentrated efforts to improve sustainable practices in areas like energy efficiency, water conservation, recycling and reducing waste. A few of them include:

• Replacing 10,000 light bulbs and 600 ballasts in 2007. As a result, Pace uses a third less energy for lighting these areas.

• Piloted SOMS Technologies’ LLC microGreen™ filters on Pace’s fleet vans. The filters have been shown to keep oil cleaner, extending its life by 21,000 miles and saving Pace (and the environment) 650 gallons of oil in a 12 to 18 month period.

• A recent commitment by Pace Law School to become the second school to participate in the “Law Office Climate Challenge,” an initiative created by the American Bar Association’s Section of Environment, Energy & Resources and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to promote environmental sustainability.

• A student-run vegetable community garden at the Law School.

Pace spearheaded and continues to serve as host institution for the Environmental Consortium of Hudson Valley Colleges and Universities, now comprising 50 institutions. For more on Pace’s sustainability initiatives, visit

“These are exciting and challenging times,” said McGrath. “We see the Mayoral Challenge as a catalyst for our participation in other programs to help secure a sustainable environment for future generations.”

Professional education. For 102 years Pace University has produced thinking professionals by providing high quality professional education resting on a firm base of liberal learning, amid the advantages of the New York metropolitan area. A private university, Pace has campuses in New York City and Westchester County, New York, enrolling more than 13,000 students in bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs in its Lubin School of Business, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, Lienhard School of Nursing, School of Education, School of Law, and Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems.

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