Climate Action


In 2007, Duke University signed the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment and set the goal to become climate neutral by 2024. This commitment led to the development of Duke's first Climate Action Plan in 2009. This plan provided recommendations to reduce emissions from energy used on campus and emissions from transportation-related activities (employee commuting, air travel, and Duke-owned vehicles). It also provided recommendations on carbon offsets, which led to the creation of the Duke Carbon Offsets Initiative. Lastly, the CAP also focused on ways to improve sustainability across Duke by creating recommendations for education and campus-community outreach.

Since 2009, Duke has made significant progress on these recommendations leading to a total emissions reduction of 24%, development of alternative transportation programs, an experiential Certificate in Sustainability Engagement, and a strong communications and outreach plan that engages thousands of students, staff, and faculty every year.

Climate Action Plan 2018 Update draft

Nearly a decade since 2009, Duke University began updating its Climate Action Plan to assess progress to-date, review assumptions that may have changed and consider new strategies that could push Duke towards carbon neutrality in 2024. The CAP Update draft has involved input from the Campus Sustainability Committee and other stakeholders on campus, an Energy Needs Analysis developed by an external consultant, and research done by Duke University.

The University is now seeking input from additional internal and external sources through an open comment period. This comment period will be open until December 17th. If you have any comments on either the CAP Update draft or the Energy Needs Analysis, please provide them through the link below.

Climate Action Plan 2018 Update draft

2018 Duke University Energy Needs Analysis


Climate Action Plan 2018 Update Timeline

November 2018

  • November 2, 2018 - beginning of open comment period
  • Public forum during Energy Week
  • Meetings with internal and external stakeholders

December 2018

  • Meetings with internal and external stakeholders
  • December 17, 2018 - end of open comment period

January 2019

  • Summary and response to comments and feedback from open comment period and stakeholder meetings

Spring 2019

  • Finalize Climate Action Plan Update