BHSU recently hosted a forum to discuss current and future sustainability efforts on campus. Some of the items President Kay Schallenkamp highlighted include:
- Installation of solar panels at two of the BHSU stone entry signs to provide lighting.
- An environmentally beneficial swale in the new student parking lot. The swale recaptures storm water from the parking lot and uses it for irrigation rather than filling up the storm sewers.
- The possibility of the addition of a wood-fired boiler to campus.
- The decision to take interim actions to reduce greenhouse gases while working toward climate neutrality by ensuring that all new campus buildings will be built to at least the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver Standard or equivalent.
- Purchase energy efficient appliances.
- Encourage all faculty, staff, and students to consider the impact on the environment before printing materials and print double-sided when possible.
- Movement toward a comprehensive recycling program to include paper, plastic, aluminum, cardboard and glass.
- Continue to incorporate energy efficiency components into building projects, including several pending projects at the residence halls which will replace windows, install a more efficient thermostat system; and renovate bathrooms to decrease water usage.
- The addition and remodeling project of the Student Union at BHSU earned a Gold LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Certification. It was the first state building to earn this standard. The Student Union is used as a model for demonstration of energy efficiencies and an educational tool for BHSU students and others in the community. Some of these energy efficient components include a garden roof, a vertical wind turbine, solar panels, and other energy efficiencies.
Schallenkamp noted that BHSU has had a successful longstanding effort to reduce energy costs throughout campus.