Oregon State University has taken yet another step towards campus sustainability.
From OSU News:
Oregon State University has joined a growing number of universities around the United States in an initiative to make its campus â€œclimate neutralâ€? by establishing policies to limit greenhouse gas emissions and reduce its energy usage.
OSU is engaged in several other energy-reducing projects:
* A project in Bexell Hall, home of the College of Business, will reduce the amount of energy consumed by lighting by approximately 50 percent.
* Lighting typically represents about 25 percent of the energy used in an office building. Bexell also is implementing new computer use policies and practices that could contribute to a goal of reducing energy use in the building by 50 percent.
* The university is exploring new software products that would reduce the energy used by campus computers. The idea, Trelstad said, is to adjust the power settings on individual computers to match the needs of users.
* OSU has a successful sustainability audit program for campus buildings that not only looks at energy consumption, but water and paper use, and even office furniture.
* The university also is conducting an audit of its outdoor lighting to make sure that lighting is safe for pedestrians at night, but that lights donâ€™t come on too early â€“ especially since the change to daylight savings.
* Recent campus buildings have been constructed in a more environmentally sustainable manner, exemplified by the 153,000-square-foot Kelley Engineering Center. Designed to be extremely energy efficient, and constructed using sustainable materials and techniques, it received a â€œGoldâ€? LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
â€œOregon State also has been recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency as a â€˜Best Workplace for Commutersâ€™ because we have great support for a variety of alternative transportation modes,â€? Trelstad said. â€œSince transportation has an obvious and significant impact on global warming, this is important to us as a university â€“ and weâ€™ve been a leader in this area for a long time.â€?
OSUâ€™s faculty are actively involved in a number of research efforts related to sustainability, including the development of wave energy, passively safe nuclear power, biofuels and other new forms of energy under the Sun Grant initiative; and incorporating these and other new findings into sustainability education throughout the curriculum.