The mission of the Facilities Services Division is to proactively support Saint Louis University's mission of teaching, research, health care and service by anticipating customer needs and working innovatively and collaboratively with stakeholders to enhance and sustain the campus environment. Accordingly, "Environmental Resource Optimization" is a key pursuit in Facilities Services' Strategic Plan.
SLU introduced single-stream recycling in the Fall of 2009, and since then has seen a steady increase in recycling on campus. However, as Saint Louis University progresses in the pursuit of creating a more sustainable campus environment, the need to develop a fresh comprehensive recycling plan became evident. To help make access to recycling easier and universal, Facilities obtained recycling receptacles for exterior use and placed them in strategic locations throughout campus during the fall of 2012. In addition, Facilities developed numerous educational tools for single-stream recycling such as brochures, presentations, signage, and magnets. The division is currently working on updating the signage and placement of bins inside campus buildings to help enhance the program and provide consistency in signage. Ultimately, these improvements should help SLU to achieve a recycling rate of 30%.
SLU is committed to reducing its energy and water consumption on campus. Facilities Services' Energy and Utilities Strategies Action Team finalized reduction goals for energy and water consumption on campus and endorsed by SLU's Sustainability Advisory Council. The team set a goal of a 20% reduction in potable water consumption (gallons per campus acre) by 2020 over a 2013 baseline equating to a reduction of over 250,000 gallons per campus acre. For energy reduction, the team set an aggressive goal of a 20% reduction in energy intensity (BTU per gross square feet) by 2020 over a 2013 baseline equal to a reduction of over 25,000 BTUs per gross square feet. Find out more about our energy and water strategies.
Facilities Services aims to establish collaborative relationships whereby the division supports the community in SLU's ongoing sustainability efforts. The process of collaborative discussion, action and input from multiple stakeholders in the university community will lead to an unyielding, cohesive charge focused on the integration of strategic thinking to advance our sustainable pursuits.
To this end, the University has organized a campus Sustainability Advisory Council. The advisory council consists of faculty, staff and students who organize and discuss SLU's sustainability initiatives.
The Sustainability Advisory Council utilizes the AASHE STARS' framework to measure progress in sustainability efforts. The framework offers a way to track, assess and benchmark ourselves on operational metrics. In addition, it provides guidance by outlining those aspects that will help to make the SLU campus environment more sustainable. SLU's first submission, in October 2011, earned the University a bronze rating. Following the announcement the Sustainability Advisory Council implemented a strategy to achieve a silver rating in their next submission. Due to all the hard work, from the entire campus community, in February 2015, SLU achieved its goal and was awarded a silver rating.
With the campus being located in an urban setting, alternative transportation options can play a vital role of how the community travels to and from campus. The interest in programs for alternative transportation is unknown at this time and investigation is underway with a committee under the Sustainability Advisory Council, specifically focused on the University's alternative transportation options and the viability of such programs. Currently, the University offers a variety of transportation options and the University community is encouraged to get informed and choose the right program that meets their environmental, social and economic needs.
Facilities Services and the Center for Sustainability have joined forces to help engage and educate the SLU community on opportunities to learn about and contribute to sustainability at SLU. A variety of initiatives generate a buzz about what we can do to be green on campus. To nurture a sense of shared stewardship, new students and employees learn about sustainability at SLU as part of their orientations. This assures that sustainability grows as SLU's community grows.
Sustainability is a journey and it takes the whole community to propel sustainability forward at SLU. Whether you are a student, staff or faculty member we need your help! Check out this google doc for the latest initiatives you could help us work towards.
Partner with us on these initiatives and get involved with any of the groups that promote sustainability on campus.
Have questions or feedback for us on these initiatives? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.