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It’s Good to Be Green!

It’s Good to Be Green!. An Examination of the Green Campus Movement. It’s Good to Be Green! An Overview. Introduction to Green Campuses: What makes a campus green? So now that you know what a green campus is … why should you care? Some great examples of effective green campuses.

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It’s Good to Be Green!

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  1. It’s Good to Be Green! An Examination of the Green Campus Movement

  2. It’s Good to Be Green! An Overview • Introduction to Green Campuses: What makes a campus green? • So now that you know what a green campus is…why should you care? • Some great examples of effective green campuses. • BSU turns green…sort of. • Room for improvement, but how?

  3. What does it mean to be green?

  4. The campus community, -- including faculty, staff, administration, students and trustees-- work together to develop policies, attitudes and behaviors that support environmental sustainability. • The campus is actively trying to reducethe impact that it has on the environment–including resources consumed and waste produced. • Specific examples later on…

  5. So, why should you (and I) care what a green campus is?

  6. Environmental Issues • Quick facts and statistics…

  7. Environmental Issues: Water Usage • If the world’s water were 26 gallons, the usable freshwater supply would be one teaspoon. • (Harper, Charles. Environment & Society, Human Perspectives on Environmental Issues, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson Education, Inc., 2004.) • People need a minimum of about 26.5 gallons per day to assure adequate health. • (Harper, p 90.)

  8. Environmental Issues: Water Usage • Americans use, on average, 123 gallons per day. • (“Trivia.” University of Florida, Water Conservation website,, April 5, 2004.) • In 2000, the World Health Organization estimated that 1.1 billion people were not able to meet their needs for safe water. • (Harper, p 90.)

  9. Environmental Issues: Water Usage • Between 1950 and 2000, global annual freshwater availability per person has decreased from approximately 16, 800 cubic meters per person to approx. 7,000 m^3 / person. • (“Water.” Environic Foundation International website, p://, April 5, 2004.) • It is projected that, by the year 2025, water use by humans will increase 40 % and that 2 out of every 3 people will live in water-stressed conditions. • (“Water.” Environic Foundation Intl.)

  10. Environmental Issues: Water Usage • Putting together the facts… • American consumption • Growing water problems • Decreased availability, increased usage

  11. Environmental Issues: Water Usage • Campus Connections… • Global / local • Our actions and what water is used for on campus

  12. Environmental Issues: Waste • Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to power a TV for 3 hours. • (“CU Recycling Facts.” U of Colorado at Boulder website., April 5, 2004.) • In the late 1990s, Americans threw away enough aluminum to rebuild the country’s entire commercial airline fleet every three months. • (Harper, p 113.)

  13. Environmental Issues: Waste • In 1999, only 30 % of municipal solid wastes (what we commonly refer to as our garbage or trash) were recycled or composted. • (Harper, p 113.) • The remaining 57 % of municipal solid waste (MSW), the amount not burned or recycled, is stored in landfills. • (“Summary of the EPA municipal solid waste program.” US EPA website., April 5, 2004.)

  14. Environmental Issues: Waste • In a lifetime, the average American will generate 600 times his or her adult weight in garbage. This means that each adult will leave a legacy of 90, 000 lbs of garbage to her or his children. • (“CU Recycling Facts.”) • The per capita generation rate in America (of MSW) in 1999 was 4.6 lbs/person/day, up from 4.3 lbs/person/day in 1994. • (“Summary...” EPA website.)

  15. Environmental Issues: Waste • Putting together the facts… • The trash has to go somewhere… • Campus connections… • Reduce/reuse/recycle

  16. Environmental Issues: Energy • One American consumes as much per capita energy as do 3 Japanese, 14 Chinese, 38 Indians, 168 Bangladeshis, 280 Nepalis, or 531 Ethiopians. • (Harper, p 230.) • By the turn of the 21st century, three nonrenewable fossil fuels (natural gas, oil and coal) supplied 75 % of the world’s commercial energy needs. • (Harper, p 229.)

  17. Environmental Issues: Energy • Coal is the dirtiest, most toxic fuel to burn, and it releases 1000s of times more radioactive particles into the atmosphere per unit of energy produced than does a normally operating nuclear power plant. • (Harper, p 232.) • Burning oil products produces carbon dioxide, nitrous and sulfur dioxides that damage people, crops, trees, fish, and other species. • (Harper, p 232.)

  18. Environmental Issues: Energy • Consider the facts… • Campus Connections • What sources do we get our energy from? • How do we use this energy?

  19. Environmental Issues • Other environmental issues to consider that are linked to our actions on campus include use/abuse of forests, use/abuse of soils (agriculture), and hazardous wastes, to name a few.

  20. Environmental Issues • After reviewing the evidence…I still don’t see the need for greening my campus • Enter – the precautionary principle

  21. Environmental Issues: Precautionary Principle Action No action Right   thank goodness uh-oh Wrong /  no losses generally no problems, no problems, however, unless major costs ensued most environmental problems have evidence backing them

  22. Examples of Green Campuses Case Studies in Environmental Sustainability

  23. Northland College • Located at Ashland, Wisconsin • 4-year private environmental liberal arts college • About 800 students • Many efforts on campus to promote environmental sustainability

  24. Northland College • McLean Environmental Living & Learning Center (ELLC) • Residence hall housing up to 114 students • “One of the most environmentally advanced residence halls in the world.” • (Betts, Kellyn S. “Greening the Campus.” Environmental Science & Technology, May 1, 2001, p 198-202.)

  25. Energy generated by windmill and 3 photovoltaic solar arrays High energy efficiency fixtures and appliances 50 % greater energy efficiency level compared to other residence halls Low flow water saving fixtures Two waterless composting toilets Flooring is organic- based linoleum Furniture is made from recycled milk jugs and steel Attic insulated with recycled paper cellulose And… Environmental Living & Learning Center

  26. Northland College • In addition to the green dorm, Northland has a pesticide-freelandscapingpolicy, uses eco-safe cleaning products, and offers an organicfare as part of food services on campus, to name a few things. • (“Northland Students Live in ‘Laboratory’” from Northland College website,, April 5, 2004.)

  27. Sterling College • Located at Craftsbury Common, Vermont • 4-year private college • Student body size – small (around 100 students)

  28. Two solar powered barns Glass greenhouse Acre of organic gardens, orchard, sustainable farming practices Local/organic food included in food service options Environmental curriculum (“Campus Facilities,” Sterling College website,, April 5, 2004.) Sterling College

  29. U of Massachusetts-Amherst • Located at Amherst, Massachusetts • Public land-grant institution • About 26,000 students

  30. Composting Program • Recognized by National Wildlife Federation’s Campus Ecology Program • Composts food waste from 5 dining halls, 2 restaurants, a co-op, and farm-animal bedding • 7-10 tons of food composted a week • 700 tons processed a year, of which 300 would’ve otherwise ended up in a landfill • Results in a savings of $19,250 a year • (“Campus Ecology: Composting,” National Wildlife Federation Campus Ecology Program website,, April 5, 2004.)

  31. U of Massachusetts-Amherst • In addition to the composting program, the campus has switched to recycled, chlorine-free paper and educates office staff about environmentally sustainable practices

  32. Macalester College • Located at St. Paul, Minnesota • 4-year private liberal arts college • About 1800 students

  33. Macalester College • Installed a wind turbine on campus, and is committed to purchasing 10 % of its power from “green” sources • Mac Bike—the focus of this group lies in promoting the bike as an alternate form of transportation

  34. Ball State University • Located at Muncie, Indiana • 4-year liberal arts university • About 19,000 students

  35. Ball State University • Added three hybrid electric vehicles to the university’s fleet of cars in 2003 • Environmental curriculum is incorporated into other disciplines such as history and English • Made 30 % and 100 % post-consumer recycled paper available for purchasing for departments and 30 % recycled paper the default purchase • Carry out composting on campus and use products for lawn maintenance • Council on the Environment is very active is campus policy concerning the environment

  36. Examples of Green Campuses • Feasibility and costs are an issue…

  37. A Cleaner, Greener BSU • Again, recognizing the impact…BSU’s Environmental Policy Statement

  38. Environmental Policy Statement • BSU… • Enjoys a high quality natural setting… • Is committed to excellence and leadership in protecting the natural environment • Affirms the belief that faculty, staff and students are responsible to provide this leadership—environmental stewardship/awareness, local action and global thinking

  39. Environmental Policy Statement • BSU… • Will endeavor, as far as resources allow, to improve our stewardship roles in the areas of • Education • Operations • Communication

  40. The Greening of BSU • Environmental curriculum—People and the Environment (Education/Awareness) • Motion light sensors (Energy) • Native wildflower and grasses incorporated into landscaping at American Indian Resource Center (Require less water, fertilizer, pesticides)

  41. The Greening of BSU • Recently switched to 30% recycled paper (same cost as non-recycled) and offer post-consumer paper options (Waste reduction/pollution prevention) • Replacement of fluorescent and incandescent lights with compact fluorescent lighting. Est. annual savings is $8100 in addition to over $13,000 in rebates. (Energy)

  42. The Greening of BSU • Water conservation devices installed. A reduction in water use of about 2 million gallons/year. Cost = $133,000. Savings = $12,500/year. (Waterusage) • Lakeshore restoration • Purchase of battery powered maintenance vehicles to replace full-size van. Annual fuel savings of $200-250/year, and initial savings of $5000-$6000. • (BSU State Agency Pollution Prevention Summary Report, FY 2003.)

  43. The Greening of BSU • Cost/benefits • Figure in Externalities

  44. The Greening of BSU: Possibilities • What actions can be taken to continue to decrease the impact of our campus on the environment? • 1st need to consider 3 roles of university

  45. The Greening of BSU: Roles of the Campus • As a reflection of society: • “Colleges and universities are microcosms of society’s systems to house and feed people, conduct research, and administer programs, so their operations have many of the same consequences and opportunities for the environment…” • (Creighton, Sarah Hammond. Greening the Ivory Tower, MIT 2001, p 1.)

  46. The Greening of BSU: Roles of the Campus • 2. As a functioning part of society: • Campuses are not institutions isolated from the rest of society, rather they play important roles. • “Universities represent a ‘large economic engine’ with an annual operating budget of over 200 billion dollars,” • (Betts, “Greening the Campus.”)

  47. The Greening of BSU: Roles of the Campus • 3. As a center for change/innovation/progress • High concentration of well-educated individuals. • Role model or leader for community.

  48. The Greening of BSU: The Next Step • Before we can act, we must assess… • Individual • Campus

  49. The Greening of BSU: Assessment • Actions of the individual -- as part of the campus community • Pop can, collective thinking… • Actions of the campus as a community

  50. The Greening of BSU: Campus Assessment • Campus Ecology, by April A. Smith, useful assessment tool • Also, Green Lives, Green Campuses, by Jane Heinze-Fry • Both of these assessment tools focus on same general areas

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