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Sustainability at ESF
Carbon Sequestration

ESF is committed to a comprehensive approach to mitigating the College's carbon footprint. Projects include energy conservation and efficiency, green building, building controls, clean energy systems, virtual power purchase agreements, electrification, and deep decarbonization. ESF continually evaluates ways to further monitor and mitigate the College's carbon footprint and strives to actively contribute to positive climate action including:

  • Quantifying and including additional GHG sinks, sources and fluxes in the ESF carbon budget, such as belowground forest biomass;

  • Research on remote sensing of continuous forest inventory plots;

  • Visualizations of forest regeneration and carbon sequestration over time;

  • Second Nature Carbon Offset Network projects, such as community tree plantings;

  • Forest carbon policy and management strategies;

  • Application of PAVER metrics to offset and sequestration projects;

  • Outreach and curriculum integration.

ESF Forest Properties manages 25,000 acres of College forest properties that sequester carbon from the atmosphere in the form of standing biomass in the forest. ESF staff and students monitor forest growth across a series of permanent plots each year and the data are publicly available open access on the web. The GHG emissions, or metric tons of CO2 equivalent (MTCO2e), sequestered in standing forest biomass is calculated by ESF Forestry professors for comparison with institutional GHG emissions.

Through sustainable forest management, forests can continue to grow, sequestering additional carbon in standing biomass each year, while also providing a range of other goods, ecosystem services and opportunities for teaching and research.