Olivia Charles’ ISR is an assessment of Millbrook’s current carbon footprint and a detailed plan for how to further decrease campus environmental impact. Olivia’s work builds on the legacy of environmental stewardship at Millbrook and provides a roadmap for future progress.
Millbrook’s solar field generates 68% of the electricity used on campus and the school purchases carbon offsets to mitigate the environmental impact of the remaining purchased electricity. Fossil fuels are still widely used for heat and to power equipment on campus, requiring additional spending for carbon offsets. In 2020, Millbrook spent close to $20,000 on carbon offsets to maintain a zero-emissions rating. Using data from the business office and the physical plant, Olivia examined Millbrook’s carbon footprint and was able to formulate a carbon action plan that, if enacted, would greatly decrease spending on carbon offsets.
As she compiled the greenhouse gas inventory for her action plan, Olivia created a manual for future assessments, hopefully demystifying the process and providing a roadmap for the project. Olivia’s plan calls for all of Millbrook’s electricity to be solar-derived by 2025 and for a steep decrease in fossil fuel usage by replacing traditional oil heating with geothermal and the conversion of the maintenance fleet to electric power by 2030.
Environmental stewardship has always underpinned Millbrook’s thoughtful growth but there is always more to be done. “Nothing happens to a carbon footprint unless you do something about it,” said Olivia. Her ISR calls for greater awareness among students about the role they play in carbon neutrality. Olivia’s climate action plan considers Millbrook’s past, present, and future.