Campus News

Oberlin in Photos: The Green Side of Oberlin

April 22, 2020

Yvonne Gay

Students plant a tree.
Students plant trees in Tappan Square in 2012. The group’s Carbon Offsetting Initiative was inspired by the Board of Trustees’ pledge to bring the college to carbon neutrality by 2025.
Photo credit: Sela Miller '15

As Oberlin continues to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day with virtual lectures, workshops, and panel discussions, we look back at some of the sustainable programs and milestones that support the college’s commitment to the challenging goal of carbon neutrality by 2025.



A colorful light in a round glass orb.
Energy orbs on campus let us know how much energy is being consumed. The orbs are part of the Environmental Dashboard project developed by Professor John Petersen '88 and environmental studies students. The project went citywide in 2013. In the summer of 2018, Oberlin College was awarded a $120,000 grant from the Cleveland Foundation to implement Dashboard technology at the Great Lakes Science Center and to incorporate real-time energy usage data from the Cleveland metro region. Photo credit: Lilly Day ’15
Students cut hair in a library.
In 2015, students donated hair through a project sponsored by the Resource Conservation Team and the Office of Environmental Sustainability. Donations were given to the Hair for Oil Spills program, which used the locks to make hair booms to be used in oil cleanups. Photo credit: Sela Miller ’15
A person scatters seed while another person rakes.
Oberlin College students, along with local residents, worked to restore prairie land in Oberlin Great South Woods with the Western Reserve Land Conservancy in 2017. Photo credit: Anna Norris
A solar array field
The 2.27MW solar array near the college’s North Athletic Fields was erected in 2012. The array produces around 3,000,000 kWh per year and or about 12 percent of the college’s electricity usage. Photo credit: Courtesy of Office of Communications
A room of people sift threw clothes and items.
Each year, the Resource Conservation Team collects various essentials—lamps, fans, hangers, bedding, school supplies, kitchen utensils, and wastebaskets—from students leaving campus each May. The items are made available, free of charge, to incoming students during Fresh Swap. Photo credit: Yevhen Gulenko


View more photos on Oberlin Flickr


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