In April 2007, former President Boren signed the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment, making OU the first institution in Oklahoma to sign the commitment. As one of 152 college and university presidents or chancellors who became charter signatories of the commitment, it is fitting -- given the history of our state -- that OU has a pioneering role in pledging to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In the fall of 2015, the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment transitioned to Second Nature's Carbon Commitment.
“It is our patriotic duty as Americans to help our country achieve energy independence and to be sound stewards of the environment. All of us as Americans should unite in this effort. OU is uniquely situated for leadership in this area not only because of the conservation steps being announced today, but because of our academic leadership in fields related to advanced oil and gas production, enhanced recovery of fossil fuels, weather and climate research, biofuels research and other areas,” said former OU President David L. Boren
Recognizing the unique responsibility that institutions of higher education have as role models for their communities and in training the people who will develop the social, economic and technological solutions to reverse global warming, the commitment provides a framework and support for colleges and universities to become climate neutral. The framework includes completing an emissions inventory, establishing a framework and interim milestones for becoming climate neutral, taking immediate steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, integrating sustainability into the curriculum and making it part of the educational experience, and making the action plan, inventory and progress reports publicly available. OU is committed to integrate tangible and cost-effective steps for campus sustainability.