Empower students to engage in all forms of environmental activism on campus, in New Haven, and beyond. Foster a sense of community around people and Earth at Yale, uniting networks of environmentalists as well as providing opportunities for students of all backgrounds to engage and share their perspectives on environmental issues.
Founded in 1986, The Yale Student Environmental Coalition (YSEC) is the umbrella organization for 7 undergraduate environmental groups in Yale College. This diverse and passionate set of groups includes Project Bright: Yale Undergraduate Renewable Energy Initiative, Fossil Free Yale, Bee Space, GREEN, Environmental Education Collaborative, Students for Carbon Dividends, and Yale Animal Welfare Alliance.
YSEC strives to (1) promote an awareness of the environment and climate justice, (2) educate and engage the Yale community in environmental debates and activism, (3) advocate for ambitious university policy on sustainability, and (4) foster an energetic environmental community on campus. Key goals for the 2019-20 school year include working alongside the New Haven Climate Movement, hosting sustainability-themed events and study breaks, expanding clean energy on campus, rolling out an Innovation Grant funding initiative, sending a delegation to the UNFCCC COP 25, starting an environmental humanities publication, and engaging in intersectional environmental and political activism.
Since 1986, YSEC and its constituent groups have worked to build an environmental community on campus, improve campus sustainability, encourage activism, hold Yale accountable, and carry out various environmental initiatives. It was a YSEC report authored at the turn of the 20th century, the Yale Green Plan, which led to the creation of the Yale Office of Sustainability. The president of Yale University, Peter Salovey, has credited work of the Yale Student Environmental Coalition as being “very influential in helping to establish the kinds of sustainability policies and organized effort around sustainability that we see on campus today.”
YSEC partners and networks with local and campus organizations, other colleges and universities, non-profits, and major international initiatives in order to carry out its mission at Yale, within New Haven, and around the world. YSEC connects students to opportunities, institutions, groups, and activities related to environment, at Yale and at large.