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SUST 4000

ESS Capstone Class

Students work in multidisciplinary groups with community partner organizations to identify real problems and develop meaningful strategies to address them. Groups work with advisors and experts and create detailed plans of action based on strong research and analysis.

This class uses interdisciplinary teamwork to develop strategies to address specific, real-world environmental problems. Students spend three to six contact hours per week in studio/workshop sessions, plus seminars and special lectures. During the first term students and instructors together identify environmental problems and/or opportunities and appropriate community partners; form interdisciplinary student teams; develop broad strategic approaches; undertake research and develop preliminary action plans. During the second term, action plans are refined into specific activities, in concert with the community partners; research is extended in an iterative manner; final recommendations are publicly presented and published; and lessons and opportunities for future projects and methods are identified.

Summary of the clients and projects in the past few years



Credit Union Atlantic (CUA)

Baseline Assessment of CUA’s Environmental Footprint





Boyne Clark LLP

Sustainability Assessment (Baseline to Benchmark)

AC Covert Distributors

Analysis of Sustainable Aquaculture/Business Practices

Green Schools NS

Environmental Leadership: High School Elective Credit Increasing Youth Engagement

Teachers’ Plus Credit Union (TPCU)

Community, Consumption, and Conference Calls

NS Association of Regional Development Authorities (NSARDA)

Intersections of Community and Business Retention





Wyse Road Community Association

Wyse Decisions: Community-owned Planning

Minas Energy

Watt’s Up: An exploration of the potential for renewable energy in Canada

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)

Encouraging Sustainable Consumers Research Study

Sink or Swim: An investigation of barriers to MSC certification of Halifax peninsula retailers

Black and MacDonald

Developing a Template of Sustainable Building Components

NS Economic & Rural Development & Tourism (NSERDT)

A Sustainable Procurement Tool for NS Provincial Government Departments

Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM)

Community Energy Network: Video and Sustain-a-Stories





NS Environment

Visualising Environmental Success in Nova Scotia

HRM Solid Waste

Waste Management in Apartment Buildings

Quality Urban Energy Solutions of Tomorrow (QUEST)

Transforming the Cogswell Interchange: An Opportunity for District Energy

Environmental Noxiousness, Racial Inequities & Community Health (ENRICH)

Time to Clear the Air: Environmental Injustice in Nova Scotia

Common Roots Urban Farm (CRUF)

Sowing Seeds for Success: Development Evaluation of CRUF
Hospice Halifax Community Awareness, Respect & Engagement for Hospice in Halifax





Trade Center Limited (TCL)

Corporate Social Responsibility

Green Catering and Events

Ecology Action Centre (EAC)

Carbon Pricing in Nova Scotia

Membership Strategies and Youth Engagement

Investing in Local Food Infrastructure





Village on Main Business Improvement District (VOM-BID)

Transformation Toolkit for Sustainable Development

Active Urban Transportation: The Road to a Complete Community

Mersey-Tobeatic Research Institute (MTRI)

Outreach Strategies or University Students in Halifax

Bras d’Or Lake Biosphere Reserve Association (BLBRA)

Marketing Plan for a Circumnavigating Walking Trail

Circumnavigating the Bras d’Or Lake: A comprehensive Trail Implementation Toolkit

Dartmouth North Community Food Centre (DNCFC)

Get Growing: A Community Gardening Guide