Yale is working to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from all sources, however, certain emissions are inevitable. For example, thousands of students and scholars from around the globe rely on air travel to study or research at Yale, and GHGs are an unavoidable consequence of these trips. Carbon offsets provide a way to balance out such activities by funding programs that reduce GHGs elsewhere. Renewable energy generation, energy efficiency upgrades, and tree planting are just a few examples of carbon offset projects.
The Yale Community Carbon Fund (YCCF) allows Yale community members to calculate the climate impact of various activities and mitigate the effects. YCCF partners with local non-profits to use the donations for offset projects in the City of New Haven.
Connections to Broader Sustainability Goals
The YCCF meets several objectives within Yale’s broader sustainability goals, outlined in the Yale Sustainability Plan 2025. Though the amount of emissions reduced through the YCCF represents only a small fraction of the Yale community’s total emissions, the calculator is an invaluable tool. It connects to the Plan’s Empowerment Ambition by giving Yale community members the agency to determine, understand, and take responsibility for their carbon emissions by donating and finding ways to reduce emissions in the future. For example, you can use the YCCF to see the emissions you could prevent by choosing to purchase an efficient car rather than a large SUV for your daily commute, or how choosing a smaller venue can reduce emissions from your events. The emphasis on local carbon mitigation projects also provides collaborative and educational partnerships around sustainability in our community.
How it Works
- Calculate your personal or departmental travel emissions or emissions associated with an event using the YCCF online calculator.
- Select from the three donation options to help mitigate your emissions. Donations can be made by debit or credit card through the YCCF website.
If you prefer to donate through a Yale cost transfer, please make note of your donation and contact the Office of Sustainability at email@example.com. Departments making donations should use spend category SC295 Subsidies (DR) for transfers or when preparing budgets.
Connecticut Children’s Healthy Homes Program: a non-Yale affiliated organization that helps low-income New Haven residents remediate health, safety, and energy efficiency issues in their homes (unverified offsets).
Urban Resources Initiative (URI): a Yale affiliate that plants trees in the City of New Haven while offering green job training to Yale and local high school students, as well as to adults with a history of incarceration (unverified offsets).
Nexus: a non-Yale affiliated organization that identifies and supports Gold Standard verified carbon offset projects in developing countries.