Pratt Institute has become the first Brooklyn-based university to pledge to reduce its ozone-depleting, asthma-inducing greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent in the next 10 years.
The greening of the Clinton Hill institution was such a big deal that Mayor Bloomberg rushed to the college on Wednesday to hype Pratt’s tacit approval of his PlaNYC environmental agenda.
Pratt — which actually has a job called “Sustainability Coordinator for Facilities and Operations” — will inspect its campus this fall to find out which buildings are emitting the most gasses. The college also committed to using “green” practices in all of its future construction projects.
This is only the latest in a neighborhood-wide effort to turn Fort Greene and Clinton Hill into environmentally friendly communities.
Rev. David Dyson, of the Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church, has committed to transforming his 147-year-old house of worship into a green beacon, and the Fort Greene Association, under the leadership of attorney Jed Marcus (Fort Greene’s own Mr. Green) is developing a plan to encourage environmentally friendly practices in the neighborhood.
He, for one, was thrilled by Pratt’s announcement.
“I think it’s fabulous,” said Marcus. “It’s great that people set goals and try to figure out how to do them. And it’s good to set ambitious goals — 30 percent is an ambitious goal.”
For its part, Pratt sees going green as part of its mission.
“As a college of art, design, and architecture, Pratt has a responsibility to innovate and teach sustainable practices and to model the city’s sustainable lifestyle through the buildings, interiors, and products our students, faculty, and alumni create,” said Pratt Institute President Thomas Schutte.
Pratt is one of nine higher-learning institutions citywide to commit to the drastic greenhouse gas reductions. The other schools are Columbia University, Barnard College, Cooper Union, all 23 campuses of the City University of New York, Fordham University, New York University, St. John’s University, and the New School University.