BATON ROUGE – LSU has been selected as a university that demonstrates a strong commitment to sustainability in terms of campus infrastructure, activities and initiatives in “The Princeton Review’s Guide to 322 Green Colleges: 2013 Edition.”
Developed in collaboration with the Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council, or USGBC, “The Princeton Review’s Guide to 322 Green Colleges: 2013 Edition” profiles 320 schools in the U.S. and two in Canada that demonstrate notable commitments to sustainability in their academic offerings, campus infrastructure, activities and career preparation.
“Our students, faculty and staff are heavily involved in making LSU a more sustainable campus, and we are discovering that this issue is growing in importance when prospective students make the decision on where they will attend college,” said Tammy Millican, assistant director of LSU Facility Services.
In its 2013 listing, the guide highlights LSU’s numerous programs and progress in creating a more sustainable environment.
“Louisiana State University – Baton Rouge is committed to the issues of sustainability on campus, and its Campus Committee for Sustainability is leading the charge,” the guide reads.
LSU’s Campus Committee for Sustainability was established in 2008 to prepare a comprehensive inventory of the campus’ existing carbon footprint, document LSU’s existing efforts toward achieving sustainability, develop an action plan to improve LSU’s sustainability efforts and promote public awareness of those efforts.
The Campus Committee for Sustainability pursues a 13-point plan that looks at the following issues:
• Energy conservation
• New construction
• Campus planning and design
• Hazardous waste management
• Solid waste reduction and recycling
• Energy purchasing
• Water conservation and waste management
• Disaster management
• Campus ground and land use
• Food and food service
• Teaching/research/public education
• Purchasing and administrative services
Other LSU efforts highlighted in the “Guide to 322 Green Colleges” include employing a sustainability officer and providing guidance on green jobs; development of programs that reduce the number of vehicles on campus, including a bus service study, restricted parking, a guaranteed ride home program and a bike share/rent program; and having 44 percent of food expenditures directed toward local, organic or otherwise environmentally responsible food.
Also, the guide notes, LSU students are able to take advantage of course offerings that focus on sustainability, work on sustainability research projects and volunteer in student-run organizations, such as the Environmental Conservation Organization, or ECO@LSU.
According to the guide, 70 percent of all campus grounds are managed organically and all building upgrades must meet energy performance standards beyond code requirements, which include the use of Energy Star appliances. Strict new guidelines are being developed for all new construction and renovation projects.
“It was actually a group of students who approached LSU administration several years ago and requested the creation of a sustainability manager position on campus. Through their efforts, as well as the efforts of faculty and staff, we are offering more sustainability courses to students and increasing sustainable practices at LSU,” said Millican.
“LSU is honored to be recognized for its continued efforts in increasing sustainability practices,” said Interim LSU Chancellor William Jenkins. “As a university, we strive to not only do our part as an institution to help lower our overall carbon footprint, but to also educate our students and the community on ways they can make a difference in preserving our environment for future generations to enjoy.”
The Princeton Review, one of the nation’s best known education services companies, first published this one-of-a-kind resource in 2010 in collaboration with USGBC. That year, USGBC – widely known for developing the LEED green building rating system – launched the Center for Green Schools at USGBC to increase efforts to drive change in how campuses and schools are designed, constructed, maintained and operated, so that all educational facilities can enhance student learning experiences.
More information on “The Princeton Review’s Guide to 322 Green Colleges,” including a free downloadable PDF version of the publication, is available online at www.princetonreview.com/green-guide.aspx or at www.centerforgreenschools.org/greenguide.
To learn more about LSU’s sustainability efforts, visit http://sustainability.lsu.edu.