Sustainable Study Abroad

Attention Study Abroad Students!

Did you know:

·Traveling 2,000 miles in an airplane emits ONE TON of C02 per passenger

·During the academic year each Middlebury student is responsible for nearly THREE TONS of CO2 emission for energy use

As you may know, Middlebury College has made a commitment to becoming carbon neutral to help address global warming. This page outlines several important steps you can take to Green your study abroad experience:

· Resources for Sustainable Travel Information - Review our Resource list to learn about steps you can take to reduce your energy consumption and live a sustainable life.

· Sustainable Study Abroad Grants of up to $500 will be made available to students studying abroad through Middlebury College. Undergraduates studying at the C.V. Starr Middlebury Schools Abroad, as well as Middlebury students studying abroad on approved non-Middlebury programs, are eligible for these grants.

Grants may be used for research projects or participation in events or projects related to sustainability issues; this may include projects or research that look at ways of reducing the human impact on the environment, enhancing social well-being, or economic development that addresses the environment and/or social well-being.

More information, application, and a list of current grant recipients.

· Global Partnerships for Sustainability - Middlebury College’s (MC) Global Partnerships for Sustainability (GPS) is creating opportunities for students to leave a sustainability legacy to the countries where they study. GPS is developing long-term partnerships between MC’s schools abroad and in-country organizations working on sustainability-related issues. GPS creates opportunities for successive cohorts of students to advance the work of partner organizations and their sustainability agendas. Through involvement in GPS students gain significantly greater understanding and proficiency in the language and culture and contribute to a more sustainable future for their host country. The GPS is a collaborative effort between MC’s C.V. Starr Schools Abroad, Environmental Affairs and the Office of Sustainability Integration. Read about Projects in Chile, China, and Japan.

· Green Passport Program - Green Passport was created to help students take into account the social and environmental consequences of studying abroad.  Green Passport helps students improve these aspects of their study abroad experience by minimizing impact on the environment, acting in culturally appropriate ways, and engaging with and giving back to host communities. More information: 

· Purchase carbon offsets
When you study abroad your air travel produces a tremendous quantity of greenhouse gases, contributing greatly to climate warming. In 2006-07, Middlebury led the way in the field of education abroad by creating one of the first organized study abroad carbon offset programs. Through this program, Middlebury worked with Native Energy, a Vermont carbon offsets company, to facilitate the purchase of carbon offsets for study abroad travel. These offsets supported many of Native Energy’s projects, such as renewable energy at schools, methane digesters on family farms, household water filters in rural Kenya and even the first large scale Native American-owned wind turbine in the U.S. Though Middlebury no longer facilitates the purchase of carbon offsets for study abroad travel, students are encouraged to purchase carbon offsets independently through Native Energy or another carbon offset provider (more information and research on carbon offset providers can be found here). 

· - is a global initiative launched by Middlebury graduates to spread a particular idea: 350 -- the safe parts per million level of CO2 in the atmosphere. We believe 350, a benchmark for where we need to move as a planet, may just be the most important number in the world. Our goal is to bring people all across the globe together and with our collective voice move this number 350 to the very heart of public consciousness.

You can help build this movement while you study abroad!

We encourage you to get involved in local 350 groups, or local divestment campaigns. There you can search for a group in your area. Becoming a part of a group could mean participating in an action, or an ongoing campaign. Also, we encourage you to connect with the various channels online that 350 represents, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and most recently, Snapchat. These are also great ways to learn about what's happening related to climate change, and also get active.


You CAN make a difference!