PSU receives national Climate Leadership Award for innovation in sustainability

Lauren Williams's picture

Portland State University (PSU) received e a 2013 Climate Leadership Award announced today by Second Nature, a national nonprofit that works to create a healthy, just and sustainable society by transforming higher education.

The awards are presented annually to institutions that have signed on to the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment and demonstrated innovative and advanced leadership in education for sustainability and climate mitigation and adaptation.

The award caps an academic year studded with sustainability accomplishments including PSU President Wim Wiewel receiving the U.S. Green Building Council’s Center for Green Schools President awards; Portland State University being named to the Princeton Review’s Guide to Green Colleges for the fourth year in a row; a Gold Bicycle Friendly University rating from the League of American Bicyclists; and the designation as a “Changemaker Campus” by social entrepreneurship group Ashoka.

Portland State was named a finalist for the Climate Leadership awards in January and in April participated in an online showcase of videos. The video highlighted PSU’s sustainability assets including the Bike Hub, the Solutions Generator program and the school’s Climate Action Plan. (Video:

“I think we will look back on this academic year as the time when Portland State University raised the bar on sustainability,” said PSU President Wim Wiewel. “Innovation spans the campus from operations to the classroom, and our research and work in the community is supporting the region’s efforts to address the causes and mitigate the effects of climate change."

PSU is one of 10 institutions and one of three doctoral granting institutions to be recognized by Second Nature for its climate leadership.

“These exemplary institutions have shown us that bold action on climate is not only possible but pragmatic,” said David Hales, president of Second Nature. “Their operational, educational, and community initiatives are fueling the thought behind what is both necessary and achievable in addressing climate change, and the labors of these leading institutions will benefit all of society.”

About Portland State University 
Located in Portland, Oregon, PSU has about 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students. PSU’s motto is “Let Knowledge Serve the City,” and we provide every student with opportunities to work with businesses, schools and organizations on real-world projects. Our downtown campus exhibits PSU’s commitment to sustainability with green buildings, while sustainability is incorporated into much of the curriculum.

About Second Nature 
Second Nature works to create a healthy, just, and sustainable society beginning with the transformation of higher education. Second Nature is the support organization of the organization of the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC). The ACUPCC is a partnership among 669 colleges and universities to accelerate the education, research, and community engagement to equip society to stabilize the earth’s climate while setting an example by eliminating net greenhouse gas emissions from their own operations. ( and