Carbon Clinic

Carbon Clinic
arial of seacoast

60+

Hours per student spent engaged in experiential learning each semester


100%

Hands-on learning


 

SIMAP

UNH hosted carbon and nitrogen tracking tool


What is the Carbon Clinic?

 

SIMAP logo and sample graphs

Piloted in spring of 2022, the new Carbon Clinic is an exciting opportunity for students to gain expertise and experience in sought-after environmental reporting skills by working in teams to complete carbon footprint analyses for leading regional businesses, nonprofits and communities. The Clinic leverages the Sustainability Institute’s expertise and investment in the Sustainability Indicator Management and Analysis Platform (SIMAP), an online platform used by more than 500 organizations worldwide to understand, communicate, and manage their carbon and nitrogen footprints. The Carbon Clinic is designed to extend the established and successful B Impact Clinic model to the pursuit of emissions reductions.  Learn about the details of the program below.

New Hampshire and Maine are special places for us. We have pristine oceans, farms that families have relied upon for generations, mountains, and rivers that fish and other animals need to remain healthy. Few of us understand the environmental impact we are having, but through UNH’s Carbon Clinic, we are able to evaluate our carbon inventory and work towards our goal of being carbon neutral. Businesses are made up of people and technology and as such have a significant carbon footprint, the business community must lead by example in understanding their footprint and minimizing its impact. 

— Bradford C. Paige, President & CEO, Kennebunk Savings and Carbon Clinic pilot client

Thank you the Henry David Thoreau Foundation for their generous support of the Carbon Clinic.

Henry David Thoreau Foundation logo
Important Dates & Reminders

Application Dates:

We accept applications on a rolling basis for future semesters.
Spring Participation Application Deadlines:
October 15: Priority / November 1: Final
Fall Participation Application Deadlines:
March 15: Priority / April 1: Final
Apply

Prospective Client Organizations
Applications accepted on a rolling basis. Fall 2022 is full - now booking for Spring 2023!
Apply

QUESTIONS?
Contact Alley Leach for more information at Allison.Leach@unh.edu

More Details for Students

The Clinic is a real-world learning opportunity for students to step out of the traditional classroom to work with local businesses, non-profits, and municipal entities and gain first-hand experience in organizational carbon and nitrogen benchmarking.

Participants will meet weekly to collaborate on their project, and participate in lectures and activities focused on the core concepts of carbon accounting and carbon footprint managements. You will:

  • Experience working with businesses, non-profits, or municipal entities on a project that will contribute to the organization’s climate leadership and capacity to address global sustainability challenges 
  • Experience working with peers from all years and different majors, helping build an understanding of the need for collaboration across disciplines and sectors to advance sustainability 
  • Gain invaluable career skills: project management and professional client communication 
  • Build your resume with concrete skills in carbon accounting and climate action planning 
  • Expand your professional network to regional sustainably minded organizations 
  • Earn course credit: This opportunity is available for students to receive two independent study credits 

Upon completion of this course, you'll be able to: 

  • Understand the benefits and uses, as well as the limitations and challenges, of entity-level greenhouse gas accounting, and be able to critically assess the fundamental underpinnings of organizational carbon reduction goals and carbon neutrality claims 
  • Understand and be able to apply the standard protocols and core concepts of greenhouse gas accounting to contribute to corporate transparency and accountability, stakeholder engagement, and business planning 
  • Understand how carbon management practices manifest across a wide range of industries, and be able to apply these concepts to critically analyze individual companies in terms of their carbon management practices. 
  • Meet weekly with clients, and with the full Carbon Clinic cohort 
  • Spend approximately 1 hour outside of weekly meetings to prepare and complete follow-up work 
  • Attend and prepare for four major events of the semester:
    • Student Orientation - First week of classes. 
    • Client Kick-Off - Second week of classes. Clients present their organization and goals for the semester and students are able to rank their organization preference).
    • Mid-Semester Check-In A chance to meet in person with your clients to reflect on, and share with the cohort what you’ve completed thus far and your plan of action for the rest of the semester.
    • Final Presentation Showcase Each team shares the work they completed and lessons they learned from the Clinic in a 10-minute presentation to clients, UNH faculty and staff, family, and friends. 

More Details for Client Partners

Small teams of motivated, cross-discipline, UNH students serve as consultants for regional businesses, non-profits and local governments seeking to elevate their climate leadership and help them calculate their SIMAP carbon and nitrogen footprint.

Client requirements:

  • Identify a single point person within your organization to serve as a primary contact with the student team and commit at least 1 hour per week to the Carbon Clinic. This person must commit to weekly video calls with their student consultants. 
  • Collect activity data sets for all relevant activities. We recommend calculating a baseline footprint for 2019 and 2021 including all direct emissions (scope 1), public utility indirect emissions (scope 2), and, if possible, some indirect emission sources (scope 3: business travel and commuting). The data sets required for this calculation include the following: 
    • Scope 1: Quantities of all stationary fuel consumption (e.g., natural gas), mobile fuel use for leased/owned vehicles, on-site fertilizer application, and refrigerant/chemical use. 
    • Scope 2: Total purchased electricity, steam, and chilled water; and any market transactions associated with purchased electricity (e.g., renewable energy credits). 
    • Scope 3: Employee commuting information (e.g., number of commuters, commute mode, trip distance), and business travel information (e.g., travel mode, distance by trip). 
       
  • In order to participate fully, partner participants are expected to have a representative participate in person or virtually at each of the semester’s three key events: 
    • Client Kick-Off  - Second week of classes. Clients present their organization and goals for the semester and students are able to rank their organization preference.
    • Mid-Semester Check-In  A chance to meet in person with your clients to reflect on, and share with the cohort what you’ve completed thus far and your plan of action for the rest of the semester. 
    • Final Presentation Showcase Each team shares the work they completed and lessons they learned from the Clinic in a 10-minute presentation to clients, UNH faculty and staff, family, and friends.

A carbon footprint analysis helps an organization understand how much greenhouse gas pollution it is producing and what activities are driving that pollution – thereby empowering the organization to target cost-effective reduction strategies. Carbon footprint management was a $9 billion global industry in 2020, and is expected to grow significantly in the coming years. This means carbon accounting expertise is an increasingly marketable professional skill, and one needn’t be a scientist or mathematician to learn it! Carbon footprints are also referred to as “greenhouse gas inventories.”