Sustainability and Climate Resilience

Today, we face a number of challenges relating to climate, land use, and sustainability. At the CLUS, we aspire to foster healthy, vibrant and sustainable communities – which is why we support transformative scientific research. Our team of passionate scientists study sustainable methods and solutions to tackle complex issues, while working with students to train the next generation.

Watch the video above to learn more about the Campus Climate Commitment, or visit Shippensburg University’s website.

Campus Climate Commitment 

On the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, Shippensburg University President Laurie Carter signed the Climate Commitment, one of the Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitments through Second Nature. This community focused plan will integrate carbon neutrality planning with climate adaptation and capacity-building to promote regional planning efforts. We have partnered with the South Mountain Partnership through the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to maximize our impact. 

The CLUS will play a key role in this initiative, which will include setting a target date for achieving carbon neutrality on campus, opportunities to reduce greenhouse gases, and a resilience assessment to identify initial indicators and current areas of vulnerability in the community. Dr. Claire Jantz (CLUS Director) and Dr. Russ Hedberg (CLUS Affiliate Scholar) are leading this effort through 2023.

Campus Climate Commitment 

On the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, Shippensburg University President Laurie Carter signed the Climate Commitment, one of the Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitments through Second Nature. This community focused plan will integrate carbon neutrality planning with climate adaptation and capacity-building to promote regional planning efforts. We have partnered with the South Mountain Partnership through the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to maximize our impact. 

The CLUS will play a key role in this initiative, which will include setting a target date for achieving carbon neutrality on campus, opportunities to reduce greenhouse gases, and a resilience assessment to identify initial indicators and current areas of vulnerability in the community. Dr. Claire Jantz (CLUS Director) and Dr. Russ Hedberg (CLUS Affiliate Scholar) are leading this effort through 2023.

Watch the video above to learn more about the Campus Climate Commitment, or visit Shippensburg University’s website.

Delaware River Basin

With funding from the William Penn Foundation, the CLUS established the Delaware River Basin Project- Land Use Dynamics in 2015 to support the Delaware River Watershed Initiative (DRWI). From 2015-2017, the research focus was on developing “A Land Cover Mapping, Modeling and Monitoring System for the Delaware River Basin in Support of Maintaining and Restoring Water Resources.” A second grant was later awarded by the Delaware Watershed Research Fund (2017-2020), expanding the focus to more widely consider climate change: “How will forest ecosystems and hydrologic processes in the Delaware River Basin be affected by climate change and land cover change?”

Deliverables through this project include projections of future land use change and models to inform climate resilience planning, such as assessments of flood risk, storm surge and sea level rise risk, and how climate change will impact hydroclimatology and forest ecosystems. The CLUS also provides technical expertise through the DRWI Data, GIS, & Modeling Workgroup, the DRWI Technical User Group, and additional mapping support.

Visit the Delaware River Basin Project website to learn more.

Antrim Township

Many communities are interested in utilizing renewable energy sources to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and long-term energy costs for community residents and businesses. From 2018-2019, the CLUS partnered with Antrim Township to evaluate solar resources relative to current electricity demand. CLUS Student Fellows developed an online mapping tool to estimate solar electricity production by land parcel. A further study was conducted to evaluate regional solar insolation, electricity demand for the prior year, total land area for solar infrastructure necessary to meet current community demands, and electricity storage capacities required to overcome short and long term fluctuations in solar radiation, relative to seasonal demand.

The information from this study will support planning for the development of a community microgrid to support resilience and energy independence for this community.

Read the final report, view the presentation slides, or learn about other community research we support

Read the final report to learn more or view the presentation slides.

Antrim Township

Many communities are interested in utilizing renewable energy sources to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and long-term energy costs for community residents and businesses. From 2018-2019, the CLUS partnered with Antrim Township to evaluate solar resources relative to current electricity demand. CLUS Student Fellows developed an online mapping tool to estimate solar electricity production by land parcel. A further study was conducted to evaluate regional solar insolation, electricity demand for the prior year, total land area for solar infrastructure necessary to meet current community demands, and electricity storage capacities required to overcome short and long term fluctuations in solar radiation, relative to seasonal demand.

The information from this study will support planning for the development of a community microgrid to support resilience and energy independence for this community.

The Center for Land Use and Sustainability is involved in a variety of Student and Research Projects related to land use.